Importance of Cloud Assurance for a Successful Cloud migration

If there is one prime factor that is causing a disruption in the technological landscape, uprooting legacy mindsets and their ways of working, it is the Cloud. It is becoming synonymous with agility, flexibility, cost optimization and faster time to market.

Gartner predicts end-user spending on public cloud services is expected to reach over $482 billion in 2022, up from $396 billion in 2021, Additionally, by 2026, Gartner forecasts that the cloud market will take over 45% of overall IT spending on system infrastructure, and application software, up from less than 17% in 2021.

Table 1. Worldwide Public Cloud Services End-User Spending Forecast (Millions of U.S. Dollars)

  2020 2021 2022
Cloud Business Process Services (BPaaS) 46,066 51,027 55,538
Cloud Application Infrastructure Services (PaaS) 58,917 80,002 100,636
Cloud Application Services (SaaS) 120,686 145,509 171,915
Cloud Management and Security Services 22,664 25,987 29,736
Cloud System Infrastructure Services (IaaS) 64,286 91,543 121,620
Desktop as a Service (DaaS) 1,235 2,079 2,710
Total Market 313,853 396,147 482,155

BPaaS = business process as a service; IaaS = infrastructure as a service; PaaS = platform as a service; SaaS = software as a service
Note: Totals may not add up due to rounding.

Organizations, to stay relevant in the current dynamic markets, need to continuously innovate and deliver a differentiated value to their customers. With the adoption of the cloud, businesses can focus on innovation by harnessing the benefits of the digital environment, scalability, faster time to market and cost efficiency.

While there are various stated benefits of migrating applications to the cloud, there are inherent challenges as well if due diligence is not done.

Challenges in cloud adoption:

Data security: Security is of paramount importance considering the ever-increasing threat vectors. Additional security measures are needed and due planning is required before migrating to the cloud. The user credentials, cloud services provider’s security controls, and patch management play an important role in ensuring cloud security.

Following are key enablers to achieve security in your cloud journey.

  • Designing base security controls to develop secure landing zones on the cloud service provider platform.
  • Creation of reusable templates with integrated security controls for a platform as a service
  • Integrate operational processes & procedures with enterprise security tools combining platforms and services.
  • Create role-based access control and define what access to be provided to each role
  • Design policies on monitoring, configuring and change management for platform security controls.

While organizations are adapting their cloud implementations and there are true benefits in terms of making it lighter, faster and more accessible from customer point of view, security risk are also huge. In order to balance the security and speed, companies should continuously work to develop their capabilities on:

  • Know your security posture and review it regularly
  • Automate native security
  • Be proactive with compliance and bring automation in it
  • Employ comprehensive security monitoring and response

Service Quality: Organizations put Disaster Recovery systems in place where on-premise systems are involved.  We have seen in the recent past, where major cloud service providers have experienced outages and applications such as Facebook have suffered globally. Hence, we firmly believe it is the cloud provider’s responsibility to move the application to the cloud and assure on availability. Service quality of cloud services can be analyzed on the parameters of autoscaling, performance, latency, availability and responsiveness.

SLAs are to be defined and agreed with cloud service providers on key aspects such as:

  • Data privacy
  • Data ownership and control
  • Service availability
  • Quality of service parameters and their monitoring
  • Change management process to modify SLAs

Performance: While cloud services are available everywhere to everyone, the experience is not the same for all users, it can differ due to internet speed, network fluctuations and the application architecture design. Performance tuning and configuration play a vital role in achieving optimal application performance generating a great user experience.

Performance-related issues include the geographical proximity of data to the end-user, network speed within the cloud to the external interfaces, speed between computation later and various data stores as well as to the end-users.

Governance: Cloud-based systems provide scalability, agility and faster time to market, on the other side they provide limited control on how infrastructure is provided and operated. Strict governance measures are to be used with agreed upon policies and procedures with cloud service providers, in order to safeguard organizational interests.

Few points to consider for cloud governance:

  • Organizations to focus on governing how their employees are using cloud services intending to reducing cloud spending, improving auditability and optimizing security risks
  • Perform risk analysis on what can be controlled in agreement with the cloud services provider
  • Implement risk controls for cloud service provider vendor management program by continuously monitoring an action plan for identified quality levels.

Cloud adoption is beneficial if augmented with cloud assurance services: With carefully designed cloud adoption and migration assurance covering performance, user experience, and security aspects, cloud migration can be a smooth operation paving the way to achieve digital transformation, innovation as well as agility of operation for the organizations.

IGT’s migration assurance platform provides comprehensive testing services across the cloud migration lifecycle.

Connect with our cloud migration assurance experts to understand more about  achieving  cloud transformation without worrying about the challenges of security, performance and user experience.

Source: Gartner

Author:

Yatender has 20+ years of experience in software test engineering. As the head of Testing Practice at IGT Solutions, Yatender is actively involved in innovations related to test engineering covering new tools, technologies, and solutions, and enabling IGT’s clients to achieve faster time to market quality improvement, and optimization of developer efforts in overall SDLC. A result-oriented leader, proficient in delivering high customer value and achieving excellence in service delivery management with proven skills in consulting and managing large and complex test programs. When away from work, he enjoys reading on a variety of topics and spending time with kids.