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The perks of adopting a multi-cloud strategy in business operations

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By Ramakrishnan Jonnagadla, Vice President, Engineering, Ascendion

Today’s global business landscape requires dynamic scalability for rapid business expansion, with minimal associated risks. This need has propelled cloud to the forefront of IT strategies. As organisations recognise the risks associated with single cloud vendor lock-in, a multi-cloud approach has emerged as a pivotal strategy. Businesses can select and combine the best services from various providers, leverage unique strengths, avoid compromising on quality or functionality, and stay at the forefront of technological advancements across multiple domains.

Enhancing operationality with multi-cloud strategy
To maximize the effectiveness of multi-cloud strategy, organisations need to embrace and adopt it across domains
Engineering services, being the core function of any business/IT organisation, can deliver the most impactful results through a robust multi-cloud implementation in areas like managing Data Pipelines, AI services and Scalability services. All modern cloud hyper-scaler providers are well equipped to deliver on this demand.

 Google Cloud Platform (GCP), with its advanced data processing and analytics capabilities, can be a great enabler in efficient handling of big data workflows, and so excels in establishing and running Data pipelines.

 Microsoft Azure, with advanced ML and cognitive services, can facilitate seamless integration and / or infusion of AI into various business processes and systems. With leading-edge AI tools in its armory, and Microsoft being a core enterprise platform in many organizations, this is well suited for provisioning AI services across the board.

 Amazon Web Services (AWS), provides its niche on robust auto-scaling capabilities, enables seamless handling of varying workloads and hence dominates in providing scalability services across the globe.

For domain/business centric services, adopting Azure’s business functions-as-a-service is a good starting point for provisioning specialized tools tailored for specific business operations. It also enables ability for rapid deployment of domain (or industry) specific solutions. For Business continuity and reliability, a sound multi-cloud strategy operationalized within organisation, does deliver on high-impact parameters like high availability, reduced downtime risk, improved redundancy, enhanced disaster recovery and reduced impact due to regional outages.

To summarize, enhanced operationality of multi-cloud services drives outcome benefits like cost optimization, debt reduction and seamless business operations. In addition, it provides the IT units with some more flexibility to become efficient, by choosing the most cost-effective services, leveraging spot instances and reserved capacities, and finally, optimize spending.

Enhancing connectivity across borders
When organisations adopt to not-so-modern cloud implementations across countries, they can potentially expose vulnerable spots and an underserved ability to respond and recover from a potential attack. A solid multi-cloud strategy empowers organizations with seamless-yet-closed connectivity across borders and offers other advantages in terms of geographic flexibility, improved latency and compliance management.

For organisations operating at a global scale, the processing proximity is a clear differentiator for the speed of business & experience of end consumers. Hosting applications & data closer to end-users, tremendously reduces latency and provides faster data access. Hosting the right applications and data, on the right cloud service, on the right shores, enables – improved performance, data sovereignty, and disaster recovery.

In addition, many of the compliance and data protection laws like GDPR in Europe, CCPA in California, are facilitated by the provider ecosystems, thereby giving the necessary cover for global organizations. These enable businesses to store data in compliance with local data residency requirements, implement region-specific data handling and privacy practices and adapt quickly to changing regulatory landscapes in different countries.

In summary, the impact of multi-cloud strategy on cross-border connectivity enables business with global reach, equips with regulatory agility, facilitates rapid market expansions, entices global collaboration and supports localisation to tailor services & content for specific regional markets.

Mitigating risks of data leaks and authentication
The cloud revolutionised data storage and access, but security concerns remain a top priority. “While the world is shrinking by the day”, the risks associated with data & privacy grow exponentially. A multi-cloud strategy eliminates the single point of failure inherent in traditional setups. If a single provider experiences a security breach, the entire data and authentication system aren’t compromised.

With authentication features like Enhanced authentication protocols, Granular access control and Encryption diversity, the business can continue operations without much trouble. It also renders well for “hardening hardware – refers to implementing robust security measures at the infrastructure level for enhanced physical security, hardware level encryptions, secure boot and trusted platform modules and custom hardware security modules (HSM).

By distributing resources across multiple providers, some of risk-mitigation strategies like avoidance of single point of failure, isolated environments, diverse security measures, and data segmentation, are provided by default, reducing the impact of outages or security breaches.

In a multi-cloud setup, a data breach in one system exposes only a fraction of the data, limiting the damage. This compartmentalization, achieved through distributed data storage, reduces the impact of a potential leak. As data is often replicated across geographically dispersed data centers, safeguarding against outages or localized attacks, is much easier.

Furthermore, each cloud provider offers robust security features, employing different technologies. A multi-cloud approach enables organisations to leverage this diversified, multi-layered security perimeter – attackers face a complex puzzle with multiple solutions to bypass, vastly reducing their success rates. Enhanced monitoring is a crucial benefit. Leading cloud providers offer advanced threat detection tools. Organisations gain access to the combined monitoring capabilities of different platforms, providing a more comprehensive view of potential threats and suspicious activities and establish anti-hack protocols accordingly.

In conclusion, while absolute security is a goal, a multi-cloud strategy makes it significantly harder for attackers to infiltrate. It’s a strategic move for every organisation seeking a robust security posture in the ever-evolving threat landscape.

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