Events and News Detail
Ordinary to Extraordinary
Initiating change. Creating a better future.
SaaS Still Scary?  [ IT World ]
July 25, 2008 08:32 PM
by James Gaskin

July 25, 2008, 01:56 PM — 

I hear from some vendors that their small business customers claim to still be scared of “The Cloud” or SaaS (Software as a Service) products. Of course, those vendors tend to sell onsite storage and server tools, competing with SaaS and The Cloud. But I don't believe those statements about small business owners running in fear from The Cloud like it was a Stephen King novel. You know, an update to The Mist.

Many enterprise CIO and security managers have told me that physical and data security for major “cloud” vendors match or exceed the best corporate security level. Since many far too many small business owners believe computer security means the Windows screensaver password, I'm willing to bet dollars to donuts every vendor in “The Cloud” provides much better security than any small business in “The Real World.” Especially since I've seen many a small business server sitting under a table, with the monitor and keyboard still attached and the administrator still logged in, meaning no physical security whatsoever.

Could a SaaS vendor, say Google with their mail service, read your data? Probably, but it would take some amount of trouble. Should you, as a Fortune 100 CEO, store secret merger and acquisition documents on a random SaaS vendor's site? No. Should you, as a small business owner or manager, worry about your data and e-mail at a hosted service? Absolutely not.

Look back at the news about data leaks and loss of customer data. Just over half the time, the data leak stems from a lost or stolen portable device, like the famous VA laptop with 26 million personal records. The rest of the time, losses and leaks come from insiders, poor network security, and bone-headed mistakes.

How about a contest? The first person who sends me evidence of data loss from a SaaS vendor gets a free copy of my humor book, Poser's Guide to the Internet and World Wide Web. Remember the Poser's credo: If they don't know, your answer's right!