One area of cloud computing that is widely used, but often not as noticeable as the software side, is cloud storage. Storing files in the cloud for easy access and sharing from anywhere was one of the very first uses of the cloud to be adopted by many users.
With advances such as automation and artificial intelligence in other types of cloud services, such as team communications and business applications, cloud storage is not falling by the wayside. The industry is also evolving to make storing data in the cloud less complex, more reliable, and better secured.
It is estimated that 50% of all enterprise data will be stored in the cloud by 2021. That's a 15% increase from just five years earlier. With today's hybrid teams, who may work from home and be hundreds or thousands of miles away from their colleagues, it's important to store files centrally in cloud systems that everyone can access.
What can you expect to see in the cloud storage market this year? Here are some of the most interesting trends to keep an eye on.
Ransomware can impact data no matter where it's stored. Whether it's on a computer, a server, or in a cloud storage platform, this malware can encrypt the information and make it unreadable to the company that owns it.
In 2021, average ransomware payments increased by 82%, and ransomware incidents increased by 64% in the first half of the year. A survey of CISOs found that 98% of organizations have been affected by a cloud data breach in the last 18 months.
To combat ransomware, more cloud storage services will offer ransomware protection. These include sophisticated systems that can prevent files from being encrypted by code and those that make a copy of the files and keep them safe so that the files can be restored at the touch of a button.
Given that ransomware shows no signs of stopping, this is a welcome addition to the cloud storage space.
One of the new buzzwords in recent years is "edge" or "edge computing." This means bringing data applications and storage resources geographically closer to the user who needs to connect to them.
As the use of cloud storage and other cloud applications has increased, so has the need to improve response times between users and servers. When data needs to be transferred over long distances, it becomes more difficult to provide the best user experience quickly and cost-effectively. As a result, cloud service providers have moved to an edge computing model.
For you, this means greater reliability and faster response times when accessing or searching for files, as your provider works to deliver your service from one of the company's cloud servers that is geographically closer to your location.
For companies with offices across the country or around the world, this means you should keep the location of the service in mind when signing up for cloud storage and talk to the provider about distance and the importance of edge computing.
Artificial intelligence and machine learning are making almost every area of technology smarter. Microsoft Word and text messaging apps can now predict what you might type to help you fill in the blanks and type faster. Programs like Photoshop can use AI to crop a person in a picture in seconds.
AI will also become more prevalent in cloud storage this year. You can expect help organizing your files automatically based on your cloud storage behavior.
Look for features that eliminate manual or repetitive tasks to free up more time. This includes AI helping to automate things like provisioning, retrieving and importing data (called "ingesting"), managing data retention and more.
In 2022, there will be more cloud storage options offered by legacy technology providers. For example, Hewlett-Packard Enterprise recently introduced a new Data Services Cloud Console, and Dell Technologies just announced a new APEX multi-cloud design that the company is working on to improve its cloud ecosystem.
More cloud storage options mean you may need more help deciding which model is best for you, as prices vary widely. You do not want to get away with more storage than you need or pay a lot for little storage.
It pays to keep up to date with new offerings and understand that not every new cloud storage option is right for your organization's specific data storage needs. HELP OPTIMIZING YOUR CLOUD STORAGE & BACKUP ENVIRONMENT
Your business data is the lifeblood of your organization, and it needs to be stored securely and accessibly. Find out how we can help you optimize your cloud storage and improve cost efficiency.
Article used with permission from The Technology Press.