Data Center vs. Cloud: 4 Things to Keep in Mind

Data Center vs. Cloud: 4 Things to Keep in Mind

Every successful modern business relies on data to provide products or services. Across all industries, access to real-time customer data can help business owners make important decisions about everything from inventory management to marketing, and beyond. There are two primary options for today’s business owners when it comes to storing that data. Read on to find out about four things business owners need to keep in mind about data centers vs. cloud-based services to get help with choosing the right one.

Server Ownership

Companies that use on-premises data centers store their information on local servers, while cloud-based data storage requires using another company’s hardware and infrastructure. Both of these models have some advantages. With data centers, business owners will have complete control over their equipment and the information it is used to store. It’s also easier to make customizations since there’s no need to seek permission from the vendor or to set up an environment that caters to legacy systems.

Cloud-based solutions require companies to give up a good deal of control. Since business owners will be using a vendor’s servers, networks, and equipment, it’s more difficult to implement custom solutions.

Cost Concerns

Buying the servers and network equipment to start a data center on-site requires a much greater upfront investment than enrolling in a cloud-based data storage program, but it cuts out the recurring monthly costs of paying a third-party provider for storage. Business owners who want the best of both worlds when it comes to both control and cost savings can also lease a data center. This allows them to minimize their up-front investments and avoid the need for storing servers and network equipment on-site while retaining complete control over their data.

The Question of Security

Both data centers and cloud-based storage are generally secure. Business owners who use data centers have more control over security protocols, access restrictions, and maintenance of the servers and infrastructure. This gives companies that need to ensure an optimal level of data protection the ability to make whatever changes are required to keep everything secure.

With cloud-based storage, some aspects of data storage are also entrusted to the vendor. They typically have teams of experts who handle not just security, but also management and infrastructure maintenance. Cloud-based storage is getting better all the time, but it’s not always as secure as vendors lead their customers to think.

Ultimately, business owners are still the ones who are ultimately responsible for protecting sensitive data. If a breach occurs, they’re the ones who will suffer. Some business owners feel that if they’re the ones who will be paying the price if anything goes wrong, they should also have full control over security protocols.

Data and Server Access

Cloud-based data storage solutions allow information to be accessed from anywhere with an Internet connection. Some see this as a benefit, while others see it as a potential risk. Easier access to data simplifies things like working with remote employees. It also makes it impossible for anyone to access the data should the Internet go down, though, which can be a huge problem.

The Bottom Line

There’s no one right solution when it comes to deciding between traditional data storage solutions and cloud-based alternatives. Business owners need to investigate all their options and determine which of them will best fit the company’s unique needs in terms of security, accessibility, cost efficiency, and infrastructure control.

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