Ovum, the independent analyst and consultancy firm specialising in global coverage of IT, and telecommunications industries, has published a report on the Storage Made Easy File Fabric™ as part of its series of research called ‘On the Radar’.
The SME EFSS white paper gave a good view of the Enterprise File Share and Sync Market for 2014 and below we lay out our top 5 predictions for the Sync, Share and Collaboration Market for 2015:
1. Enterprises will look to adopt hybrid cloud services that aggregated on-premise and cloud services:
Enterprises, and most companies, use a myriad of on-premise and on-cloud services. Almost all of these services now store data either in the form of attachments or direct use of storage. Companies will embrace solutions that work with what they have.
2. Solutions that can be deployed on premise as well as in a range of clouds will be attractive to strategically thinking companies.
Not everything will end up on Cloud and for bigger companies they will act as their own service providers so companies want the choice of private, hybrid or public implementations.
Research by the Enterprise Strategy Group pinpointed 97% of the organizations that use public cloud-based File Share and Sync had an interest in storing some of their file data using their on-premises storage.
3. Security and control will be top of IT’s agenda amidst the well publicised Sony Hack
The Sony hack was the enterprise’s Snowden moment, when all those doubts and thoughts about their own security policies around files bubbled to the surface. This has resulted in data security and control becoming even more of a concern for IT departments who are tasked with protecting corporate data.
4. Remotely stored data will have an encryption first policy
Enterprises will force an encryption first policy for sync and share data to mitigate disaster for data breaches of service infrastructures outside of their control.
5. Vendors will continue to be acquired or die as the drive to zero pricing affects all
There is no doubt the Enterprise File Share and Sync space is crowded with backup vendors, gateway vendors, collaboration vendors and content vendors all looking to add some form of sync and share to their features set. Coupled with this the price war that has raged throughout 2014 between Google, Amazon and Microsoft is likely to continue driving some vendors out of business and causing others to look at acquisition as an early exit.
About Storage Made Easy:
Storage Made Easy is the trading name of Vehera LTD who has offices in the UK, USA and Switzerland.
The SME solution allows IT to regain control of “cloud data sprawl” by unifying private/public company data and privately used employee cloud data solutions into a single converged infrastructure. This can easily be managed and be used to set and enforce governance and audit controls for file access and sharing in addition to providing deep content search of indexed data.
This approach provided a solution to the “shadow IT” conundrum and makes it possible for companies to find a balance between the protection of corporate data and employee data by allowing businesses to monitor, secure and audit all data silos, be they private or cloud or company or employee, from a single access point.
Further information can be found at www.StorageMadeEasy.com
The proliferation of Cloud Storage and Cloud SaaS Services is both a blessing and a curse for businesses. In the past IT was able to control and lock down which applications and services could be used, but today services such as Box.net, and DropBox, and a host of others gives IT at best a headache and at worst a challenge that is a constantly moving target.
End users are also driving for use of such tools as they strive to increase personal productivity which the various SaaS services provide, and which IT would like to ban or lock down so they become the antithesis of what they were intended to be.
Even tools that are authorised by IT are not necessarily immune to this problem. What happened to that file link a user shared from SharePoint? Who opened it? Was it supposed to be shared?
Recent research commissioned by Opsview reveals 67 percent of UK IT decision-makers worry about how easy it is for their staffs to sign up and install cloud services. The survey also found that 76 per cent of IT directors admitted employees are likely to flout IT policies in order to make use of cloud services. This research was backed up by separate research conducted by Global Technology Provider Avanade in which it revealed the emergence of Cloud sprawl had 67% of 600 executives interviewed in the UK were worried that the rapid adoption of publicly-available cloud services was putting their company at risk.
What is required is some form of Cloud Governance to give back control to IT whilst still enabling users to use tooling that makes them productive.
This is just one of the many things we’ve built into our cross Cloud File Server, the ability to govern and control Cloud Sprawl:
The ability for IT to take back control means that they can more effectively control data compliance issue challenges presented by Cloud Services, as well as those more broadly presented by e-compliance. Widespread use of digital communication technology has led to companies facing a new types of challenge with regards to the management of privacy, consumer protection, Intellectual Property, and content governance.
Compliance issues are of course not the only issue companies face when it comes to distribution of digital informtion across Cloud Services. Information visibility is required across all these services when, for example, doing something as simple as a document search.
The SMEStorage Cloud File Server can be used as either a SaaS service or an onsite Cloud Appliance to address these issues. Firstly any Clouds or SaaS services added to the File Server have information indexed and recorded, and made available from a single unified explorer view. As users create anew content and upload it to any of the Cloud and SaaS services that have been added to the Cloud File Server, each service’s API is used to securely capture, store and index the files. Note that no content needs to be copied. All this is stored and accessed from the original repository.
File event logging can be set at a micro or macro level to record any file event from any user with related IP addresses and GEO Location information. This information provided an audit trail that can be filtered and stored:
Also The Cloud File Server Admin can control which ‘private’ individual user clouds can be used or added within the Organisation. For example the Admin may decide to enable each user to add a Google Apps Docs Account and restrict all others, or may also enable users to add personal DropBox accounts also. Any personal user Clouds that are added in this way can also be indexed, audited and file events recorded:
In addition to this any file uploaded has the GEO location recorded as to where it was uploaded from and where it was uploaded to, again for audit and compliance purposes. The integration of geolocation technology can also helps organizations restrict access to files or SaaS applications appropriately dependant on any data privacy or e-compliance law that differs or is required to be supported on a cross border basis.
The ability to index and record information from different Cloud Stores as described above also results in a powerful cross-cloud search capability, in which searches for content are made against all the Clouds that have been added, with results returned instantly.
In summary, unmanaged usage by company staff can not only lead to security issues for IT, such as incomplete or lost data, but can also lead to potential breaches of corporate governance and regional data legislation rules. In addition it prevents companies from fully leveraging the cost savings that are associated with cloud computing, and ultimately can undermine such infrastructure adoption by IT departments.
The SMEStorage Cloud File Server provides features that enable IT to:
- Capture and Index SaaS and File Cloud Services
- Provide event auditing with downloadable audit trail across all services added
- Provide GEO restriction monitoring and filtering
- Search across Clouds and Services for e-discovery needs and to promote information visibility and access
- Use CloudSafe to backup content repositories to another Cloud for retention or backup purposes