Choosing a Cloud Service Provider

In this final instalment of our Cloud Backup article series, we guide you through the process of choosing a cloud service provider.

When choosing a cloud service provider, the reliability and capability of the cloud service provider are crucial. A recent study by IT industry association CompTIA found that very few companies conduct a comprehensive review of their cloud service providers before sealing the deal. According to Tim Herbert, CompTIA VP, “only 29 percent of the companies in the study said they engage in a heavy or comprehensive review of the cloud service providers’ security practices”. Understanding your business objectives and how cloud computing services can help you to achieve them, will give you a good idea of the type of service you will require.

Below we list some considerations when choosing a cloud service provider:
  • Storage space

Private cloud services (also known as an internal or enterprise cloud) are used by one organisation and are not exposed to the public. The cloud itself is situated inside the organisation and is protected by a firewall to ensure only the organisation and its users have access to the data.

  • Backup frequency

Many businesses underestimate the time it takes to restore normal business operations (the recovery time objective, or RTO) and the cost associated with the downtime to do so. You should choose a cloud service provider that backs up your data at regular intervals (this is referred to as the RPO, or, the amount of time between backups) to ensure your business operations remains intact. You should ensure that your cloud service provider of choice could meet your RTO and RPO needs. When evaluating the services of a potential cloud service provider, “consider whether it offers rapid recovery functionality such as the ability to run operations on the backup server or in the cloud while primary servers are restored

  • Uptime

Uptime is crucial when, for example, your business runs online and you customers need to obtain information or engagement via your website. If your website experience and outage, it not only affects your business but also your customers. If this is your setup, you need to consider factors such as your potential cloud service provider’s uptime history. Do they often experience outages? And, when they do experience an outage, how do they handle it? Some providers commit to 99.9 percent uptime combined with a financial commitment should they fail to be meet the uptime standard. In this regard, your cloud provider’s uptime history should guide your decision.

  • Security and support

Security and privacy are imperative when it comes to cloud hosting. Your cloud service provider should therefore provide firewalls, antivirus, user authentication, data encryption, security audits and regularly scheduled updates. Not only should your cloud service provider be able to guarantee the security, confidentiality and integrity of your data, it should also ensure that, where applicable, your organisation’s industry needs are met.

The above points should guide you in choosing the best cloud storage and backup provider suited to your specific business needs.

As Canada’s Premier Private Cloud Solution Provider, we provide Cloud Backup services that give you the freedom to outsource your data storage needs with confidence and cost efficiency. Your data will be safe and secure as all Stage2Data backups are protected

For more information on the cloud services offered by Stage2data contact us today.