Compliance remains the key cloud security challenge, according to CipherCloud report

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Almost two thirds of organisations in a CipherCloud survey on cloud data protection say compliance and auditing privacy is the biggest security challenge associated with cloud computing.

CipherCloud, which has released its inaugural “Global Cloud Data Security Report”, found a number of interesting findings in the research, and the challenges associated with data security for Global 2000 companies.

Compliance and data protection concerns continue to remain the top barriers for cloud adoption. Compliance (64%) was seen as the biggest cloud security challenge, followed by unprotected data for documents (32%). Malware protection for documents (2%) and a lack of secure collaboration and file sharing methods (2%) were relatively inconsequential in comparison.

The number one concern identified was a regulation that a country imposes upon an industry or organisation, often referencing the collection of data on their citizens and utilising cloud apps to process and store the information.

Increasingly in Europe, as this publication has previously reported, cloud service providers are building data centres in countries closer to their customer base to get around issues of data sovereignty and latency – yet the concern still pervades. 58% of respondents cited this as a main issue, while 31% were concerned about internal security adherence and 11% cited a lack of data residency.

“Several organisations are proactively instituting self-imposed data security regulations for any cloud-based application,” the report notes. “These internal regulations are extensions of existing enterprise data security policies and best practices. The primary concern associated with self regulation is the lack of data classification standards.”

Compelling events that drove cloud adoption decisions included the opportunity to introduce new cloud tools and services (47%), replacing legacy applications (22%), and information collaboration (11%). Despite this Pravin Kothari, CipherCloud CEO, remains optimistic.

“Organisations are harnessing cloud computing to more effectively compete in the global economy with faster time to market and cost efficiencies,” he said in a statement. “At the same time, the headwinds of privacy legislation in North America, Europe, South America and Asia Pacific make the case for data-centric protections in the cloud.”

He added: “Our research indicates that compliance factors are galvanising organisations, particularly in healthcare and finance, to fortify their data defences in the cloud.”

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