Cloud Computing: When to Make It Private

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Should you make your cloud computing choice private? Perhaps—but it all depends on your understanding of “private cloud.” The definitions of “private cloud” vary widely across this industry. One of our previous posts, Getting Beyond the Public/Private/Hybrid Cloud Labels, sheds a little light on this topic.  But for this article, when talking about private cloud, I’m referring to a true private cloud solution—one that’s delivered privately “in the cloud”—not one that provides shared internal access on your own private network behind a corporate firewall.

Private cloud provides hosted infrastructure and software provisioned for use by a single organization with all the advantages of cloud-based Internet access and the security of dedicated, single tenant assets—like Windstream’s hosted private cloud solutions. Of course, all three cloud options—private, public and hybrid—all offer security, but private cloud provides the absolute highest level.

So what should be taken into consideration when deciding if your cloud computing solution should be private? 

You have heightened concerns with security and privacy. The dedicated infrastructure, hardware and software of a private cloud solution with single tenant access (not shared) adds a higher level of security that many businesses need to ensure mission-critical applications and data remain secure.

You’re in a highly regulated industry with heavy regulatory compliance requirements. A private cloud solution helps ensure compliance with privacy and security requirements, such as HIPAA, SOX, GLBA, PCI DSS, SOC Audits, as well as other legislation and regulations for healthcare, finance and other highly regulated industries.

You have specialized hardware, OS or software licensing requirements. A private cloud solution keeps these assets secure and ensures that the provisions of licensing agreements are met. 

You need network reliability and scalability. Private clouds offer flexibility in terms of hardware, software, security and network performance. Resources are easily and quickly distributed on an as-needed basis, able to scale up or down on demand to meet business requirements. Dedicated hardware and load balancing ensure reliability and uptime, while multiple servers, backup, redundancy and disaster recovery solutions lock in the business continuity aspect.

You need a customized solution. Private clouds can be custom-configured to meet your specific business requirements. This cloud design can be built around your organization’s needs, ensuring it meets your specifications, with the flexibility to change as your business does.

You want the cost advantages and efficiencies of the cloud. In a hosted private cloud environment, CapEx investments and costs associated with operating your own data center, such as infrastructure, servers and network equipment, are avoided. Without the need to hire a dedicated IT staff to manage the solution, your costs are even further reduced.

When weighing the pros and cons of cloud solutions, spend some time with a Windstream advisor who can walk you through the details of private cloud, public cloud and hybrid cloud solutions. Contact us to learn more about public cloud, private cloud, hybrid cloud and other data center solutions