Now that experts, researchers, analysts and even IT professionals have had time to analyze cloud computing and virtualization technology, business leaders need to get over their fears and get on board with both, according to IT expert Daniel Burrus.
The author of six books on technology and the founder and CEO of IT consulting firm Burrus Research, Burrus wrote in a recent contribution to Sys-Con Media that the IT industry just knows better now about virtualization and cloud computing security.
"In the recent past, it was common for individuals within major organizations to use virtualized services or cloud computing when at home, but at work they weren't using those services at all," Burrus wrote. "Why? Because corporate IT didn't trust the lack of security of the cloud and they weren't sure it was a hard trend – something that was definitely here to stay. Today, we know better."
Some have caught on to this, Burrus added. In fact, citing research across the industry, Burrus noted that 30 percent of all enterprise servers are currently virtualized, and he predicted that this number will reach 50 percent in the next few years.
However, Burrus said this number should grow even higher, as many of the latent companies continue to cite security issues that have been or are going to be addressed.
In the next few years, the trend to virtualize certain aspects of IT will grow and consume the entirety of the enterprise IT department, Burrus said. At that point, with private cloud computing the standard rather than a rarity, IT professionals will have accrued such a familiarity with the technology that security and uptime will no longer be significant concerns to those investing in it. Burrus referred to this as IT-as-a-Service, going so far as to call the format a "game changer."
"Because you now have components of the IT department existing in the cloud, you're freeing your in-house IT staff to shift from a maintenance mode to an innovation mode," he wrote. "It allows the IT department to really look at the industry trends unfolding so your company can give customers the products and services they'd ask for, if they only knew what was possible."
Virtualization security has been a hot topic of discussion in IT in the past few years, with even the PCI Security Standards Council shifting its focus toward the technology. Earlier this year, the PCI SCC announced new guidelines for sensitive payment information stored on virtual servers, citing the growing need for standardization in the sector.