Comparatively, cloud networking features more security than
traditional networking. Some of the security benefits include the option
to encrypt data, provide multi-factor authentication, install
firewalls, and enable data loss prevention.
Researchers identifies the following four principles of network security in cloud computing:
Isolation between multiple zones should be guaranteed using layers of firewalls.
Network controls for traffic to and from their applications.
End-to-end transport level encryption should be used by applications.
Standard secure encapsulation protocols such as IPSEC, SSH, SSL should be used when deploying a virtual private cloud.
In addition to these four principles, it’s essential to hold public cloud service provider accountable to their service level agreements (SLA). According to one of them “an SLA by itself is not enough to guarantee that your organization receives the level of service promised. Since it is not in the provider’s interest to inform a client when its quality of service fails, we must rely on an independent view of WAN link connections.” Investing in network performance management (NPM) tools gives enterprises access to monitor network performance and ensures that the cloud service provider is fulfilling requirements.
The newest cloud trend dominating IT strategy discussions? Multi-cloud. Tired of data lock-in and the reduced value of one-size-fits-all services over niche alternatives, tech-savvy companies are turning to a mix of cloud providers rather than simply cloud types. Yet with one cloud vendor for security, a mix of solutions for new and legacy applications, separate dev and testing environments, and several overlaps for storage and backup, how do businesses make sure they’re getting the best value for their budget?
Here’s a look at tackling the top multi-cloud challenges.
Multi-Cloud Challenge No. 1: Unique Portals
One of the greatest benefits of
multi-cloud also presents one of its greatest challenges. Multi-cloud
allows organizations to deploy the environment for each and every
critical business applications, but in doing so, adds several layers of
management complexity. Every vendor deployment comes with its own
unique portals and processes that companies need to manage. Consider
that even something as seemingly simple as Identity and Access
Management can be complicated if different providers demand differing
password complexities or authentication measures.
The simplest solution here? A
multi-cloud management platform that brings unique resources under a
single umbrella, and helps avoid problems with platform and process
sprawl. While a good start, such platforms typically are never a
one-stop shop. Meaning, you might find great multi-cloud monitoring
platform, but still rely on manual security patching or provider portals
for advanced configuration.
Multi-Cloud Challenge No. 2: Cloud Skills Gap
The exponential growth of AWS and Azure is fueling huge demand for admins and architects who’ve mastered the platforms. In fact, AWS-certified IT professionals are commanding 28 percent higher salaries than their peers. Companies looking to harness the public cloud as a major pillar of their multi-cloud strategies must account for these unique skill sets, and be prepared to make the necessary investments, or alternatively, partner with a managed service provider with a proven track record of multi-cloud expertise.
Multi-Cloud Challenge No. 3: App Sprawl
Multi-cloud environments make it easier than ever to lose track of which applications are running, where and how much this costs you day to day. For example, employees may be partial to a particular cloud for certain workloads, but across your entire staff, this choice may not be consistent. This means you could end up with three, four or more of the same app, open across multiple clouds. The solution? According to Tech Republic you’re well served following apps to the cloud, rather than trying to push apps into the cloud based on falling storage or compute prices.
Multi-Cloud Challenge No. 4: Migration
How do you get from “here” to
“there?” If you’re moving apps and services from an existing hybrid
deployment of public and private cloud solutions and spreading them out
across multiple clouds, you’re facing a migration problem: How do you
ensure that the result matches expectations and doesn’t simply pad
expenses? The right multi-cloud management solution can help you prepare
automatic deployment of existing standards and policies across your new
cloud network, rather than forcing you to complete this task one
deployment at a time.
Multi-Cloud Challenge No. 5: Compliance
HIPAA. PCI DSS. FISMA. SOX. For most
companies, multiple compliance requirements apply to some or all of
their data — and these requirements don’t disappear in the cloud. As a
result, you need to ensure that specific providers are able to meet
compliance needs before making
them part of your multi-cloud infrastructure. Verify that they can
satisfy compliance needs and are willing to sign all necessary business
associate or other agreements, or consider the help of a cloud service
brokerage (CSB) to find your best fit.
Multi-Cloud Challenge No. 6: Security
No discussion of multi-cloud is complete without mentioning secure environments for the cloud. As noted by Computer Weekly, it’s critical to have a detailed security discussion with your potential vendor prior to signing any SLA — find out what’s covered under provider responsibilities along with its specific response in the case of a security breach or data loss: Is the vendor prepared to help with remediation efforts or does it simply shell out a set penalty? Both options are viable, but it pays to know before you start moving data.
Multi-cloud offers businesses the
ability to create powerful and secure cloud environments outside the
traditional compute framework. Maximizing the impact of multi-cloud,
however, means tackling the challenges of unique portals, app sprawl,
migration, compliance and security head-on.
Additionally, IT is confronted with
the fact that business unit owners know longer need to go through IT to
acquire compute resources. Referred to by many as “Shadow IT,” the trend
opens organizations to significant vulnerabilities due to a lack of
oversight and adherence to standard security protocols. To bring rogue
infrastructure out of the shadows, IT leaders must build relationships
with business units and define clear policies for self-service IaaS
Multi-Cloud Challenge No. 7: Controlling Costs
Mastering multi-cloud economics is perhaps the greatest challenge of all. Each platform has its own unique set of variables that make optimization a full-time job – billing systems, pricing models, instance/VM sizing differences, data egress fees, etc. The multi-vendor sprawl of billing itself can induce budgeting nightmares for IT management. Partnering with a managed multi-cloud provider to consolidate billing and provide application-specific cost analysis, however, can simultaneously ease a lot of this burden and keep IT’s relationship with the finance department healthy. (Always a good idea!)
Here we go with a brief overview of each individual cloud Security services.
is a Hardware and Software Security Company that provides co-ordinated
security between firewalls and the endpoints with real-time aptitude.
Sophos Cloud has now been termed as Sophos Central.
Sophos Central offers services like modernized plan or aim, improved safety, locating the threats more rapidly and exploring them, simplified enterprise-level security solutions etc.
Sophos also offers few other security solutions that include email, web, mobiles, servers, Wi-Fi etc.
Sophos was established in 1985, and as per the 2016 annual report, there are about 2700 employees in the company
Sophos Central is available for a 30-day free trial
As per the financial reports for 2016, the yearly revenue of Sophos was $478.2 million
is a Cloud Security Automation company that has automated the security
controls related to networking, computing etc through which it attained
the maximum point of visibility and data protection.
Hytrust offers various services like cloud and virtualization security, cloud encryption, encryption key management, automated compliance etc.
Hytrust’s main motto is to facilitate reliable communications across public and private clouds
Few of the Chief clients of Hytrust are IBM Cloud, Cisco, Amazon Web Services, and VMware etc.
Hytrust Company was established in 2007 and presently they have around 51 – 200 employees in their organization.
#3) Cipher Cloud
is a privately held leading cloud security company that protects your
data flawlessly and more effectively by incorporating data monitoring
& protection, risk analysis, and cloud detection.
has extended its services across various sectors like financial,
healthcare & pharmaceutical, government, insurance and
This Company offers a wide range of
services like cloud computing and security, data loss prevention,
tokenization, cloud encryption gateway etc to the above sectors as
mentioned in the previous point
CipherCloud was founded in 2010, and now there are approximately 500 employees in that company
CipherCloud protects Google drive, Dropbox, OneDrive, Office 365, SAP etc.
is a foremost security and Compliance Company that offers enterprise
and corporate level cloud-based encryption solutions.
Proofpoint protects the sensitive data related to business through cloud-based email security and compliance solutions
Using Proofpoint solutions one can stop the attacks through attachments to a maximum extent
The solutions offered by Proofpoint are a bit complex and it includes more modules. Such numerous modules may cause few problems for smaller companies
This company was established in 2002 and it has around 1800 employees at present
Proofpoint’s total revenue for the year 2016 was $375.5 million.
is a chief cloud security company that uses some patented technology to
provide security over various networks like remote, corporate, mobile
Netskope’s cloud security is trusted by many of the larger enterprises or organizations because of its rough security policies, advanced cloud technologies, unique cloud-scale architecture etc.
Few of the leading clients of Netskope are Toyota, Levi’s, IHG, Yamaha etc.
Netskope is the only Cloud Access Security Broker (CASB) that provides complete sophisticated threat protection for cloud services by some multi-level risk discovery
Netskope is a privately held American based software company established in 2012 with 500 employees approximately
is a privately held Information Technology and Services company that
provides uninterrupted and end-to-end security for containerized
Twistlock’s sophisticated, highly developed
intelligence and centralized platform protects the environment from
next-generation threats, malware, exploits, etc.
Twistlock extends its services to few of the reputed customers like Amazon Web Services (AWS), Aetna, InVision, AppsFlyer etc.
The safety solutions offered by Twistlock are Automated Runtime defense, Vulnerability Management, Proprietary Threat feeds etc.
Twistlock was established in 2015 with present staff count of around 200 employees
is the world’s foremost Computer Software and Cyber Security Company
that safeguards the vital data of the organizations. To characterize the
potential of cybersecurity, Symantec has acquired Blue Coat Systems
(Leader in highly developed enterprise security) in 2016.
the acquisition of Blue Coat by Symantec they became the leader in data
loss prevention, cloud generation security and website security, email,
Symantec and Blue Coat together are solving the
greatest challenges faced by their customers like Safeguarding the
mobile labor force thereby avoiding the advanced threats etc.
of the incorporated products by Symantec which offer supreme protection
to minimize the risk are Messaging Security, Endpoint & Hybrid
Cloud Security, Information protection and Secure Web gateway (SWG) etc.
Symantec is a Public Company that was launched in 1982. Approximately there are 11,000 employees in that organization at present
is a Computer and Network Security Company that develops and promotes
firewalls, anti-virus, security gateways and also other cybersecurity
software to safeguard your Public, Private and Hybrid Cloud.
FortiCASB (Fortinet Cloud Access Security Broker) is an important module of Fortinet’s Cloud Security Solution
FortiCASB is planned to afford data security, visibility, threat protection and compliance for the cloud data of all sized enterprises
Few of the Featured Customers who are utilizing the services of Fortinet are Panasonic, Edward Jones, Harley Davidson Dealer Systems (HDDs), and Cash Depot etc.
This company was established in the year 2000. And now the company size has extended up to 5000 employees
Revenue of Fortinet for the year 2016 was $1.28 billion.
#9) Cisco Cloud
is world’s foremost Computer Networking Company that makes, expands and
sells high technology products & services, networking hardware,
domain security etc.
Cisco Cloud Security helps its users to
protect their data and application by blocking the threats in advance,
extending its protection wherever the user goes and access the internet
It also enables the compliance and protects it against malware, data breaches etc.
Cisco Cloudlock is a CASB that uses automated approaches to handle the threats in the cloud app security eco-system
Cisco was established in the year 1984. And presently there are around 71,000 employees in the company
#10) Skyhigh Networks
Networks is the leader in Cloud Access Security Broker (CASB) that
helps enterprises to tackle data security challenges in the cloud by
enforcing data security policies and defending against the threats.
With Skyhigh cloud data security, the organizations can spot and rectify the confidential user threats, insider threats, unofficial cloud entries etc.
Using Skyhigh data encryption approach one can protect the data that is already uploaded to the cloud and the data that is to be uploaded
Few of the customers who have adapted Skyhigh Networks cloud security are Western Union, HP, Honeywell, Perrigo, Directv, and Equinix etc.
Skyhigh Network is a Computer and Network Security Company which started in 2012 with a present staff count ranging from 201 to 500 employees
First on the list is data breaches. To illustrate the potential magnitude of this threat, CSA pointed to a research paper from last November describing how a virtual machine could use side-channel timing information to extract private cryptographic keys in use by other VMs on the same server. A malicious hacker wouldn’t necessarily need to go to such lengths to pull off that sort of feat, though. If a multitenant cloud service database isn’t designed properly, a single flaw in one client’s application could allow an attacker to get at not just that client’s data, but every other clients’ data as well.
The challenge in addressing this threats of data loss and data leakage
is that “the measures you put in place to mitigate one can exacerbate
the other,” according to the report. You could encrypt your data to
reduce the impact of a breach, but if you lose your encryption key,
you’ll lose your data. However, if you opt to keep offline backups of
your data to reduce data loss, you increase your exposure to data
The second-greatest threat in a cloud computing environment, according
to CSA, is data loss: the prospect of seeing your valuable data
disappear into the ether without a trace. A malicious hacker might
delete a target’s data out of spite — but then, you could lose your
data to a careless cloud service provider or a disaster, such as a fire,
flood, or earthquake. Compounding the challenge, encrypting your data
to ward off theft can backfire if you lose your encryption key.
Data loss isn’t only problematic in terms of impacting relationships
with customers, the report notes. You could also get into hot water with
the feds if you’re legally required to store particular data to remain
in compliance with certain laws, such as HIPAA.
The third-greatest cloud computing security risk is account or service traffic hijacking. Cloud computing adds a new threat to this landscape, according to CSA. If an attacker gains access to your credentials, he or she can eavesdrop on your activities and transactions, manipulate data, return falsified information, and redirect your clients to illegitimate sites. “Your account or services instances may become a new base for the attacker. From here, they may leverage the power of your reputation to launch subsequent attacks,” according to the report. As an example, CSA pointed to an XSS attack on Amazon in 2010 that let attackers hijack credentials to the site.
The key to defending against this threat is to protect credentials from
being stolen. “Organizations should look to prohibit the sharing of
account credentials between users and services, and they should leverage
strong two-factor authentication techniques where possible,” according
Fourth on the list of threats are insecure interfaces and APIs. IT
admins rely on interfaces for cloud provisioning, management,
orchestration, and monitoring. APIs are integral to security and
availability of general cloud services. From there, organizations and
third parties are known to build on these interfaces, injecting add-on
services. “This introduces the complexity of the new layered API; it
also increases risk, as organizations may be required to relinquish
their credentials to third parties in order to enable their agency,” the
Denial of service ranks as the fifth-greatest security threat to cloud
computing. DoS has been an Internet threat for years, but it becomes
more problematic in the age of cloud computing when organizations are
dependent on the 24/7 availability of one or more services. DoS outages
can cost service providers customers and prove pricey to
customers who are billed based on compute cycles and disk space
consumed. While an attacker may not succeed in knocking out a service
entirely, he or she “may still cause it to consume so much processing
time that it becomes too expensive for you to run and you’ll be forced
to take it down yourself,” the report says.
No. 6 on the list is malicious insiders, which can be a current or former employee, a contractor, or a business partner who gains access to a network, system, or data for malicious purposes. In an improperly designed cloud scenario, a malicious insider can wreak even greater havoc. From IaaS to PaaS to SaaS, the malicious insider has increasing levels of access to more critical systems and eventually to data. In situations where a cloud service provider is solely responsible for security, the risk is great. “Even if encryption is implement, if the keys are not kept with the customer and are only available at data-usage time, the system is still vulnerable to malicious insider attack,” according to CSA.
Seventh on the list is cloud abuse, such as a bad guy using a cloud
service to break an encryption key too difficult to crack on a standard
computer. Another example might be a malicious hacker using cloud
servers to launch a DDoS attack, propagate malware, or share pirated
software. The challenge here is for cloud providers to define what
constitutes abuse and to determine the best processes for identify it.
Eight on the list of top security threats to cloud computing is
insufficient due diligence; that is, organizations embrace the cloud
without fully understanding the cloud environment and associated risks.
For example, entering the cloud can generate contractual issues with
providers over liability and transparency. What’s more, operational and
architectural issues can arise if a company’s development team isn’t
sufficiently familiar with cloud technologies as it pushes an app to the
cloud. CSA’s basic advice is for organizations to make sure they have
sufficient resources and to perform extensive due diligence before
jumping into the cloud.
Last but not least, CSA has pegged shared technology vulnerabilities as
the ninth-largest security threat to cloud computing. Cloud service
providers share infrastructure, platforms, and applications to deliver
their services in a scalable way. “Whether it’s the underlying
components that make up this infrastructure (e.g. CPU caches, GPUs,
etc.) that were not designed to offer strong isolation properties for a
multi-tenant architecture (IaaS), re-deployable platforms (PaaS), or
multi-customer applications (SaaS), the threat of shared vulnerabilities
exists in all delivery models,” according to the report.
If an integral component gets compromised — say, a hypervisor, a shared
platform component, or an application — it exposes the entire
environment to a potential of compromise and breach. CSA recommends a
defensive, in-depth strategy, including compute, storage, network,
application, and user security enforcement, as well as monitoring.
Securing the cloud starts with the cloud architecture. The critical piece to building the cloud computing security architecture is planning the visibility portion, aka the performance management strategy, of the cloud network. Visibility provides insight into potential flaws, traffic blockages, or locates suspicious activities in the network. SAN Org states it best: “Visibility is the key takeaway here, because you cannot protect systems you cannot see.”
Cloud security falls into a shared cloud responsibility model, meaning that both the provider and the consumer possess responsibility in securing the cloud. The best practice is for enterprises to carefully review the cloud service provider’s (CSP) service level agreement (SLA) to understand the enterprise’s responsibility of enforcing security measures. For all cloud service models, ResearchGate recommends these items for a secure cloud architecture:
Apply Single Sign-On for multiple accounts with various service
providers to make it easier on the IT administration staff to monitor
Use virtual firewalls instead of first-generation firewalls
Incorporate data loss prevention tools
In addition to the advice from ResearchGate, enterprises should further protect the cloud by implementing a Security Information and Event Management (SIEM), a Denial-of-Service (DDoS) Attack Protection, and Anti-Virus Software.
How the Cloud Computing Security Architectures Vary Based on Cloud Service Models
While all cloud architecture models require performance management tools and strategy, the security architecture varies based on the type of cloud model — software-as-a-service (SaaS), infrastructure-as-a-service (IaaS), or platform-as-a-service model (PaaS). It’s important to distinguish the different service models, as The Cloud Security Alliance notes: “IaaS is the foundation of all cloud services, with PaaS building upon IaaS, and SaaS in turn building upon PaaS.”
Source: Cloud Security Alliance
IaaS Cloud Computing Security Architecture
This infrastructure provides the storage and networking components to cloud networking. It relies heavily on application programming interfaces (APIs) to allow enterprises to manage and interact with the cloud. However, cloud APIs tend to be insecure as they’re open and readily accessible on the network.
The CSP handles the security of the infrastructure and the
abstraction layers. The enterprise’s security obligations include the
rest of the stack, including the applications.
Deploying network packet brokers (NPB) in an IaaS environment provides the visibility into security issues within a cloud network. NPB’s direct traffic and data to the appropriate network performance management (NPM) and security tools. Along with deploying NPB to gather wire data, enterprises should log wires to view issues occurring at the endpoints in a network.
IaaS cloud computing service models require these additional security features:
Virtual web application firewalls placed in front of a website to protect against malware.
Virtual network-based firewalls located at the cloud network’s edge that guards the perimeter.
Intrusion Detection Systems and Intrusion Prevention Systems (IDS/IPS)
SaaS Cloud Computing Security Architecture
SaaS centrally hosts software and data that are accessible via a
browser. The enterprise normally negotiates with the CSP the terms of
security ownership in a legal contract.
Cloud Access Security Brokers (CASB) play a central role in
discovering security issues within a SaaS cloud service model as it
logs, audits, provides access control, and oftentimes includes
Other security features for the SaaS cloud environment include:
PaaS Cloud Computing Security Architecture
CSA defines PaaS as the “deployment of applications without the cost and complexity of buying and managing the underlying hardware and software and provisioning hosting capabilities.”
The CSP secures a majority of a PaaS cloud service model. However,
the security of applications rests with the enterprise. The essential
components to secure the PaaS cloud include:
For detail on security reference model refer the link
Cloud computing is used for enabling global access to mutual pools of
resources such as services, apps, data, servers, and computer networks.
It is done on either a third-party server located in a data center or a
privately owned cloud. This makes data-accessing contrivances more
reliable and efficient, with nominal administration effort.
cloud technology depends on the allocation of resources to attain
consistency and economy of scale, similar to a utility, it is also
fairly cost-effective, making it the choice for many small businesses
But there are also many challenges involved in cloud
computing, and if you’re not prepared to deal with them, you won’t
realize the benefits. Here are six common challenges you must consider
before implementing cloud computing technology.
computing itself is affordable, but tuning the platform according to
the company’s needs can be expensive. Furthermore, the expense of
transferring the data to public clouds can prove to be a problem for
short-lived and small-scale projects.
Companies can save some
money on system maintenance, management, and acquisitions. But they also
have to invest in additional bandwidth, and the absence of routine
control in an infinitely scalable computing platform can increase costs.
2. Service Provider Reliability
capacity and capability of a technical service provider are as
important as price. The service provider must be available when you need
them. The main concern should be the service provider’s sustainability
and reputation. Make sure you comprehend the techniques via which a
provider observes its services and defends dependability claims.
is a significant shortcoming of cloud technology. No seller can promise
a platform that is free of possible downtime. Cloud technology makes
small companies reliant on their connectivity, so companies with an
untrustworthy internet connection probably want to think twice before
adopting cloud computing.
4. Password Security
password supervision plays a vital role in cloud security. However, the
more people you have accessing your cloud account, the less secure it
is. Anybody aware of your passwords will be able to access the
information you store there.
Businesses should employ multi-factor
authentication and make sure that passwords are protected and altered
regularly, particularly when staff members leave. Access rights related
to passwords and usernames should only be allocated to those who require
5. Data privacy
Sensitive and personal information
that is kept in the cloud should be defined as being for internal use
only, not to be shared with third parties. Businesses must have a plan
to securely and efficiently manage the data they gather.
6. Vendor lock-in
a cloud computing agreement is easier than leaving it. “Vendor lock-in”
happens when altering providers is either excessively expensive or just
not possible. It could be that the service is nonstandard or that there
is no viable vendor substitute.
It comes down to buyer
carefulness. Guarantee the services you involve are typical and
transportable to other providers, and above all, understand the
Cloud computing is a good solution for many
businesses, but it’s important to know what you’re getting into. Having
plans to address these six prominent challenges first will help ensure a
In the wake of economic slowdown, organizations are aiming to make the most of their existing resources—to make every input a viable source. In such a strategy, modern technologies such as Cloud Services and Business Intelligence (BI) are regarded to be prerequisite platforms. Such technologies not only prepare companies to become efficient but also make them ready to maintain a competitive stance. BI and cloud work in sync to form hypotheses and predictions to be prepared for market competition. Researchers believe that the future of BI will be very bright when it is used on existing cloud platforms; it may also exhibit computing advantages based on daily data accumulating of large volumes.
Cloud-based BI is different from traditional BI in the sense that it
implements expensive and complicated software on-site; it is accessible
anywhere on any device in a so-called software-as-a-service model. Cloud
BI doesn’t require additional hardware or software nor a strict
restriction on space. The system can also auto-select storage according
to current computing needs – this elastic scaling and ever-ready
availability are the perks that make cloud-based BI so powerful.
BI involves making better decisions through the use of people, data,
processes, and related tools and methodologies. Recently, BI has come to
rely on near real-time operational data of systems such as ERPs, CRMs,
supply chains, and so on. Operational BI is often tied to performance
management and business process management with natural undertones of
maintaining data quality, consistency, and the monitoring of these two.
BI prompts intelligent reports based on a market analysis which may also
involve geography based investment decision for MNCs or buying behavior
of consumers for producers.
The ability to operate on BI involves intensive data management and computationally expensive data analysis. With the help of the cloud, BI bypasses these hurdles without impacting the quality of the processes negatively. Instead, it improves efficiency, reduces error, and expenditure.
The analytics performed on the cloud platform will affect BI in the following ways:
• Accelerating the adoption of BI services due to rising lucrative intents involved.
• Easier evaluation of the data and analytics through real-time analysis at lightning-fast speed.
• Increased short-term ad-hoc analysis through avoiding data marts
spawning. The data mart can be created whenever needed, and after the
job, it can be eliminated from a cloud cluster without causing
• BI will also make the process very flexible through avoidance of
long-term business commitments. The companies will be autonomous in
catering to the needs of data usage.
• Consideration of probable growth through ongoing analysis of data
staged on an architecture functionally efficient, elastic and platform
such as cloud.
BI in the cloud also has some benefits that might be
instrumental in transforming its future, especially in its broad
adoption. These benefits include:
• Fast, easy and inexpensive deployment resulting from non-requirement of infrastructural setup.
• No extra expenditure on hardware and software setup, which will inevitably result in low Total Cost of Ownership (TCO).
• Higher reliability will be extended as cloud computing can be used
at reliable and secure locations for data storage against the threat of
accidental data loss.
• Multi-tenancy environments where the resources could be better
exploited to their optimum usage will result in cost reduction and
higher customer reach.
• Free automated software upgrades and maintenance would attract wise brains in adopting the cloud for BI.
• Flexibility and scalability of the cloud needed are not just smart
but also economical. Reduction in a waste of cloud space will help save
both energy and money.
• Cloud types such as SaaS allow the consumers to pay for only what
is used; this would result in the elimination of waste and reduced
• Specific cloud solutions come with personalized needs for data
handling. From large numbers of simultaneous users to a minimal amount
of users, the consumer will indulge in fast and easy scalability.
• Cloud computing allows easy cross-location data sharing and remote
data access even when they are deployed outside a company’s firewall.
With such astounding benefits, it seems convincing to agree with the
researchers who proclaim a rapid growth of cloud-based business
intelligence in the near future. As the world is progressing and
advancing towards the betterment of the technology, it wouldn’t be
entirely wrong to predict the improvement of current benefits of
cloud-based BI. Cloud-based BI enhances efficiency and productivity of
business intelligence. In the future, BI will be further assisted by web
3.0 technology, making its future even brighter.
BI(Business Intelligence) is a
set of processes, architectures, and technologies that convert raw data
into meaningful information that drives profitable business actions.It
is a suite of software and services to transform data into actionable
intelligence and knowledge.
BI has a direct impact on
organization’s strategic, tactical and operational business decisions.
BI supports fact-based decision making using historical data rather than
assumptions and gut feeling.
BI tools perform data analysis and create reports, summaries, dashboards, maps, graphs, and charts to provide users with detailed intelligence about the nature of the business.
Why is BI important?
Measurement: creating KPI (Key Performance Indicators) based on historic data
Identify and set benchmarks for varied processes.
With BI systems organizations can identify market trends and spot business problems that need to be addressed.
BI helps on data visualization that enhances the data quality and thereby the quality of decision making.
BI systems can be used not just by enterprises but SME (Small and Medium Enterprises)
How Business Intelligence systems are implemented?
Here are the steps:
Step 1) Raw Data from corporate databases is extracted. The data could be spread across multiple systems heterogeneous systems.
Step 2) The data is cleaned and transformed into the data warehouse. The table can be linked, and data cubes are formed.
Step 3) Using BI system the user can ask quires, request ad-hoc reports or conduct any other analysis.
Examples of Business Intelligence System used in Practice
In an Online Transaction Processing (OLTP) system information that could be fed into product database could be
add a product line
change a product price
in a Business Intelligence system query that would beexecuted for the
product subject area could be did the addition of new product line or
change in product price increase revenues
In an advertising database of OLTP system query that could be executed
Changed in advertisement options
Increase radio budget
Correspondigly, in BI system query that could be executed would be how many new clients added due to change in radio budget
In OLTP system dealing with customer demographic data bases data that could be fed would be
increase customer credit limit
change in customer salary level
in the OLAP system query that could be executed would be can customer
profile changes support support higher product price
hotel owner uses BI analytical applications to gather statistical
information regarding average occupancy and room rate. It helps to find
aggregate revenue generated per room.
It also collects statistics
on market share and data from customer surveys from each hotel to
decides its competitive position in various markets.
By analyzing these trends year by year, month by month and day by day helps management to offer discounts on room rentals.
bank gives branch managers access to BI applications. It helps branch
manager to determine who are the most profitable customers and which
customers they should work on.
The use of BI tools frees
information technology staff from the task of generating analytical
reports for the departments. It also gives department personnel access
to a richer data source.
Four types of BI users
Following given are the four key players who are used Business Intelligence System:
1. The Professional Data Analyst:
data analyst is a statistician who always needs to drill deep down into
data. BI system helps them to get fresh insights to develop unique
2. The IT users:
The IT user also plays a dominant role in maintaining the BI infrastructure.
3. The head of the company:
CEO or CXO can increase the profit of their business by improving operational efficiency in their business.
4. The Business Users”
Business intelligence users can be found from across the organization. There are mainly two types of business users
Casual business intelligence user
The power user.
difference between both of them is that a power user has the capability
of working with complex data sets, while the casual user need will make
him use dashboards to evaluate predefined sets of data.
Advantages of Business Intelligence
Here are some of the advantages of using Business Intelligence System:
1. Boost productivity
a BI program, It is possible for businesses to create reports with a
single click thus saves lots of time and resources. It also allows
employees to be more productive on their tasks.
2. To improve visibility
BI also helps to improve the visibility of these processes and make it possible to identify any areas which need attention.
3. Fix Accountability
system assigns accountability in the organization as there must be
someone who should own accountability and ownership for the
organization’s performance against its set goals.
4. It gives a bird’s eye view:
system also helps organizations as decision makers get an overall
bird’s eye view through typical BI features like dashboards and
5. It streamlines business processes:
takes out all complexity associated with business processes. It also
automates analytics by offering predictive analysis, computer modeling,
benchmarking and other methodologies.
6. It allows for easy analytics.
software has democratized its usage, allowing even nontechnical or
non-analysts users to collect and process data quickly. This also allows
putting the power of analytics from the hand’s many people.
BI System Disadvantages
intelligence can prove costly for small as well as for medium-sized
enterprises. The use of such type of system may be expensive for routine
drawback of BI is its complexity in implementation of datawarehouse. It
can be so complex that it can make business techniques rigid to deal
3. Limited use
Like all improved
technologies, BI was first established keeping in consideration the
buying competence of rich firms. Therefore, BI system is yet not
affordable for many small and medium size companies.
4. Time Consuming Implementation
takes almost one and half year for data warehousing system to be
completely implemented. Therefore, it is a time-consuming process.
Trends in Business Intelligence
The following are some business intelligence and analytics trends that you should be aware of.
Artificial Intelligence: Gartner’
report indicates that AI and machine learning now take on complex tasks
done by human intelligence. This capability is being leveraged to come
up with real-time data analysis and dashboard reporting.
BI software combined with collaboration tools, including social media,
and other latest technologies enhance the working and sharing by teams
for collaborative decision making.
Embedded BI: Embedded
BI allows the integration of BI software or some of its features into
another business application for enhancing and extending it’s reporting
Cloud Analytics: BI applications
will be soon offered in the cloud, and more businesses will be shifting
to this technology. As per their predictions within a couple of years,
the spending on cloud-based analytics will grow 4.5 times faster.
It is the part of the private cloud that manages the virtual
machines, i.e. it is the part (program) that enables multiple operating
systems to share the same hardware. Each operating system could use all
the hardware (processor, memory) if no other operating system is on.
That is the maximum hardware available to one operating system in the
Nevertheless, the hypervisor is what controls and allocates what
portion of hardware resources each operating system should get, in order
every one o them to get what they need and not to disrupt each other.
Virtualization is changing the mindset from physical to logical.
What virtualization means is creating more logical IT resources,
called virtual systems, within one physical system. That’s called system
virtualization. It most commonly uses the hypervisor for managing the
resources for every virtual system. The hypervisor is a software that
can virtualize the hardware resources.
Virtualization, changing the mindset from physical to logical.
There are two types of hypervisors:
Type 1 hypervisor: hypervisors run directly on the system hardware – A “bare metal” embedded hypervisor,
Type 2 hypervisor: hypervisors run on a host operating system that
provides virtualization services, such as I/O device support and memory
how type 1 and type 2 hypervisors differ
Type 1 hypervisors:
1. VMware ESX and ESXi
These hypervisors offer advanced features and scalability, but require licensing, so the costs are higher.
There are some lower-cost bundles that VMware offers and they can
make hypervisor technology more affordable for small infrastructures.
VMware is the leader in the Type-1 hypervisors. Their vSphere/ESXi
product is available in a free edition and 5 commercial editions.
2. Microsoft Hyper-V
The Microsoft hypervisor, Hyper-V doesn’t offer many of the advanced features that VMware’s products provide.
However, with XenServer and vSphere, Hyper-V is one of the top 3 Type-1 hypervisors.
It was first released with Windows Server, but now Hyper-V has been
greatly enhanced with Windows Server 2012 Hyper-V. Hyper-V is available
in both a free edition (with no GUI and no virtualization rights) and 4
commercial editions – Foundations (OEM only), Essentials, Standard, and
3. Citrix XenServer
It began as an open source project.
The core hypervisor technology is free, but like VMware’s free ESXi, it has almost no advanced features.
Xen is a type-1 bare-metal hypervisor. Just as Red Hat Enterprise
Virtualization uses KVM, Citrix uses Xen in the commercial XenServer.
Today, the Xen open source projects and community are at Xen.org.
Today, XenServer is a commercial type-1 hypervisor solution from Citrix,
offered in 4 editions. Confusingly, Citrix has also branded their other
proprietary solutions like XenApp and XenDesktop with the Xen name.
4. Oracle VM
The Oracle hypervisor is based on the open source Xen.
However, if you need hypervisor support and product updates, it will cost you.
Oracle VM lacks many of the advanced features found in other bare-metal virtualization hypervisors.
Type 2 hypervisor
1. VMware Workstation/Fusion/Player
VMware Player is a free virtualization hypervisor.
It is intended to run only one virtual machine (VM) and does not allow creating VMs.
VMware Workstation is a more robust hypervisor with some advanced features, such as record-and-replay and VM snapshot support.
VMware Workstation has three major use cases:
for running multiple different operating systems or versions of one OS on one desktop,
for developers that need sandbox environments and snapshots, or
for labs and demonstration purposes.
2. VMware Server
VMware Server is a free, hosted virtualization hypervisor that’s very similar to the VMware Workstation.
VMware has halted development on Server since 2009
3. Microsoft Virtual PC
This is the latest Microsoft’s version of this hypervisor technology,
Windows Virtual PC and runs only on Windows 7 and supports only Windows
operating systems running on it.
4. Oracle VM VirtualBox
VirtualBox hypervisor technology provides reasonable performance and
features if you want to virtualize on a budget. Despite being a free,
hosted product with a very small footprint, VirtualBox shares many
features with VMware vSphere and Microsoft Hyper-V.
5. Red Hat Enterprise Virtualization
Red Hat’s Kernel-based Virtual Machine (KVM) has qualities of both a
hosted and a bare-metal virtualization hypervisor. It can turn the Linux
kernel itself into a hypervisor so the VMs have direct access to the