Addressing the common concerns over Cloud Computing - Hosted Desktop

There are numerous cost and agility benefits associated with cloud computing, but the contradictory information out there can make it difficult to grasp what making the switch to the cloud really means.

Check out our concern busting guide to the cloud from the Cloud Services team at HDUK.

1. Security of Data – Data stored in the Cloud is actually stored in a data centre.  These data centres house enterprise level servers and equipment to store your data.  The security of a data centre cannot normally be matched in a business office environment. For example, a data centre will have 24-hour security, fire suppression systems and visual verification of all persons entering the data floor.  As well as top level physical security, cloud providers use virtual security such as cutting edge security tools, an intrusion prevention system and encryption to protect data.  Transmissions over the Internet are encrypted using, for example, SSL encryption, the same as is used for online banking and secure payments. The biggest source of data loss or leaks is as a result of misplaced USB sticks, stolen laptops, unsecure internet connections and careless employees.

2. Internet speed and connection –  In May 2020 Ofcom found that the average Internet Speed in UK is 64 megabits per second (Mbps), up from 54.2Mbps the year before. The 18% boost is in line with growth in previous years. City locations are much higher than this on average, and speeds are increasing all the time with investment backed by government. The Internet is also now consistently reliable in the UK.  If yours is not, it could indicate towards a fault with internal equipment or cabling.  Some cloud based services such as a hosted desktop do not require high speed internet connections as no actual processing of data or data is transmitted over the Internet. The data is stored in data centres and the hosted desktop allows you to remotely access it.

3. Location of Data – Some businesses are concerned that they do not know where their data is stored.  Our answer to this would be to check who your supplier is before signing up. Under the Data Protection Act 1999, storage of data remains the responsibility of the data controller (i.e. you), so you must ensure that the data processor (cloud provider) maintains good practice in terms of security. This means that you need to check that your data is fully compliant with the latest GDPR laws.

4. Cloud Provider – In our online world, there are new cloud providers setting up every week, but it takes a large amount of investment and planning to set up the infrastructure.  Our advice would be to research providers and do your homework. The first thing to check is who they really are, i.e. are they are reseller or not. A good provider will give you all the reassurances you need regarding who they are and how they operate. Some questions to ask are:

  • Do they provide all support, and are there support team technically capable?
  • What is included in their pricing and what do they charge as extras?
  • Are their data centres based in the UK, and if not, where is your data going to be stored?
  • What is their backup and disaster recovery procedure?
  • What is the lock in period?
  • What is there standard licencing agreement (SLA) and downtime record? A good provider will give at least 99.9% uptime with service credits for downtime.

5. Changing the way you work – A less tangible concern but none the less one we frequently encounter is the ‘fear of change’ factor. Staff worry that moving to the cloud will change the way they work, business owners worry that training will be required – costing time and money.  As an example, a hosted desktop system looks, feels and behaves the same as a normal desktop or laptop. A business can move to a hosted environment with no re-training required. IT staff fear redundancy and unfortunately this is inevitable, but we have found that in some cases the IT manager actually welcomes less time spent on IT maintenance, allowing them to spend more time on planning and strategy.

For more information about our cloud and hosted desktop services, contact us at or speak to one of our team on 020 3239 6181.

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