Business trust in data security in the cloud at an all-time low

Risk of security breaches as 50 per cent of large organisations opt for mass market ‘consumer’ cloud services 
Data security and trust in cloud-based services are a rapidly growing concern for IT decision makers within large organisations, according to a new global study from BT. 

While 70 per cent of those surveyed are adopting cloud storage and web applications within their business, their confidence around cloud security is at an all-time low. 

Yet despite this, 50 per cent say they have adopted mass market ‘consumer’ cloud services, rather than those designed specifically for the enterprise. 

The new study explores the attitudes to, and use of, cloud-based services of IT decision makers from enterprise organisations in 11 countries and regions around the world 

It reveals that three quarters of IT decision makers (76 per cent) say security is their main concern about using cloud-based services. Half of respondents (49 per cent) admit that they are ‘very or extremely anxious’ about the security implications of these services. This is a substantial increase of 10 per cent from previous research in 2012. 

On opting for consumer solutions over cloud offerings tailored to the enterprise, 48 per cent of respondents have the impression that enterprise cloud applications and services are too expensive and 44 per cent hold the belief that mass market public cloud applications and services are as effective as using those designed specifically for enterprise users. 

For more than half (54 per cent) of IT decision makers, trusting a third party is also a concern. 41 per cent of respondents have the impression that all cloud services are inherently insecure and 26 per cent of those surveyed said that they had experienced a data breach incident where their cloud service provider was partly at fault. 

Mark Hughes, president of BT Security, said: “The adoption of cloud services has increased rapidly across the globe. Organisations are looking to reap the numerous benefits - such as scalability, fast deployment and ubiquitous network access – these services can offer. It is an interesting paradox that the survey has exposed – on the one hand decision makers are concerned about the security implications of using public cloud services but on the other, their buying decisions seem to be driven by short term cost perceptions. We invite these decision makers to also weigh up the reputational cost and impact on their brand of a cloud security breach. Enterprise cloud applications and services are designed to help businesses realise the possibilities in the cloud while substantially decreasing risk. For example, our own BT Cloud Compute portfolio can provide security around cloud storage, while our BT Assure portfolio brings powerful cloud based security and risk management to the network. This can end up providing very substantial savings. 

“I would suggest organisations undertake a thorough risk analysis before opting for mass market cloud services. Every organisation has a different appetite for risk and these need to be factored into the buying decision equation. Our security specialists can help them make the right assessment for the optimal solution to limit their risks, and deliver a great performance, whatever their needs may be.” 


Notes to editors: 
BT Cloud Compute is available across 20 countries in Europe, the Americas, the Middle East and Africa and Asia Pacific. More information onhttp://www.globalservices.bt.com/uk/en/products/cloud_compute

The BT Assure portfolio of security services is available globally and supported by highly qualified professional services specialists. More information onhttp://www.globalservices.bt.com/uk/en/products_category/security_and_risk_management 
About the research 
The research was completed by Vanson Bourne for BT in July 2014. Interviews were carried out with 640 IT decision makers in medium to large sized organisations (1000+ employees) across eleven countries and regions – UK, France, Germany, US, Spain, Brazil, Middle East, Hong Kong, Singapore, South Africa and Australia – and in a range of sectors including finance, retail and public sector. 

BT Security BT Security is building on 70 years’ experience of helping organisations around the globe and across all sectors get ahead of the threat curve and reduce the uncertainty and complexity of security. We provide an end-to-end capability to help organisations enjoy higher levels of security at a time when security budgets are not keeping pace with the threat landscape. 

The sophistication of our security operations means that we think about the assets, the people, and the processes, and combine these with both network and security intelligence to help our customers stay ahead of the security risks. BT Security protects both BT and its customers. These customers are advised by a global team of 1,300 security practitioners, 600 global security specialists and a professional services team of approximately 4,000. The BT Security Assure portfolio covers: 

• Assure Managed Firewall 
• Assure Web Security 
• Assure Intrusion Prevention 
• Assure Message Scan 
• Assure Denial of Service Mitigation 
• Assure Cyber 
• Assure Managed Cloud 
• Assure Threat Monitoring 
• Assure Vulnerability Scanning 

To find out more about BT Security, visit www.bt.com/btassure/securitythatmatters.