As Cloud Computing becomes the new platform for many aspects of our lives, from Google Mail to iTunes to banking and more, the discussion specific to security tends to focus on the What. It may be helpful to look at the Why.
Security Cloud Computing (SCC) is changing the very fabric of how security is sold, delivered, used and as a result, valued. While SCC is nothing new to the security monitoring business model, SCC may benefit your security program. You will hear concerns that the cloud is not secure. But that is not our cloud. Securing the cloud is important, and very smart people are working to ensure that happens. Our opportunity is to use the cloud to secure our organizations, not to secure the cloud.
As a definition, any security related application (video, identity, access, fire, intrusion, life safety) that is traditionally purchased, installed and managed can become a cloud-based service with recurring payments as the model versus capital expenses.
What is driving Security Cloud Computing, and is it time for an upgrade to your plan?
WHAT is Changing?
Three technology trends are combining to enable successful cloud computing models and the layering of applications on the cloud. In our case, security is the application on the cloud platform.
Digitalization has occurred, as the move from analog to IP is in full force with more than 65 percent of all DVRs sold including Ethernet connections. IMS Research identifies that more than 50 percent of all 32 or more camera installations are now IP (with analog dominating the under 16 camera installations).
Software as a Service (SaaS) is logical, efficient and now technically practical. The days of buying and installing software that ages quickly and requires upgrades/replacement by users are in the rear view mirror. SaaS changes the way we live our lives and access information from music on iTunes, to customer information on Salesforce.com to books from Amazon to entertainment via on demand video at home. Those failing to meet this call will go the way of Blockbuster and Borders. Having the latest version of software each time you log in and having subject matter experts upgrade and maintain that software is a good thing. The move to virtualization is in full force.
Mobilization, especially the 2-4 billion smart phone devices where people want to get their information, video and the latest issue of Securitymagazine is changing where we work and how we live. This information has to be collected in and distributed from a cloud platform with the latest software in place.
Combined, this tsunami of change is impacting every business, including security.
“There are some very powerful technologies available today. And those that are not using them are running out of excuses,” notes Bud Broomhead, CEO of Intransa.
WHY it is Changing
Enterprise goals have moved from event response to risk management. The goal is to achieve situational awareness and event prevention as well as provide an effective response to unforeseen events. Organizations like yours are demanding access to all business information when, where and how you want it, and that includes security-related information.
At the same time, organizations are more focused on putting resources into strategic initiatives and outsourcing non-strategic activities. For example, an investment company will outsource payroll to ADP but not the development of algorithms that create a competitive advantage on their trading floor. SaaS for security fits perfectly into that goal.
SCC delivers powerful information to achieve a broader array of business goals. Customer metrics, including people counting at stores or crowd control in public venues, are enabling both business and security decisions during fluid situations that benefit all your stakeholders.
Even more, SCC is being adopted due to internal corporate responsibilities, legislation, insurance and risk management. For example, drug treatment facilities are required to host video content offsite. The value in the physical security application must transcend security and create broader business value to be justified. For your consideration, these are the WHYs of SCC.