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Surveying healthcare cloud encryption options, strategies

 healthit Surveying healthcare cloud encryption options, strategiesHealthcare organizations are mainly attracted to cloud computing for its flexibility, elasticity and the pay-as-you-go economic model. But since these features attracted them to the cloud in the first place, they don’t want to sacrifice any of these advantages for increased security. Security concerns and fears that cloud encryption would reduce productivity may be some of the reasons so many these organizations are still on the fence.

2013 IDG Enterprise Cloud Computingstatistics point to clear trends in the cloud computing world, specifically in the realms of cloud security and cloud encryption. There is definitely an upward trend in cloud computing purchases due to increased confidence, ease of deployment and lower costs for cloud in comparison to traditional hardware-based IT. But when making decisions about cloud security, it is important to invoke best practices such as asking for input from trusted advisors before choosing a cloud security provider.

Organizations will naturally be most concerned with procuring a solid security policy, compliant with government regulations such as HIPAA and PCI DSS. In maintaining compliance, however, healthcare organizations should avoid draconian security policies that stifle creativity and innovation. Leaders of cloud projects should balance security and compliance needs to come up with a solution that allows for work flow flexibility while maintaining maximum private data security.

Cloud security is not one-size-fits- all

One way to do so is to review security products that are specifically built for the cloud and is adequate for an organization’s volume. A small or medium-sized organization may want a solution that allows it to focus on its product or service. Cloud encryption and security providers should offer a quick, easy solution that scales well. And IT concerns such as security, maintenance, backup and support should be done by the cloud security provider. And as the organization grows, it will likely need elasticity for additional storage capacity, more geographical regions and other services.

Large organizations will want the ability to run only some of their applications in the cloud. Even if they plan to move everything over to the cloud, it will likely be a gradual process, so they need the option to keep some portions of their workflow offline for a while. One option may be picking a cloud encryption solution that spans both private and public clouds.

Private cloud security vs. Public cloud security

Both the private and the public cloud offer the advantages of speed of deployment, savings on capital expenditures (CAPEX), lower total cost of ownership (TCO), enabling business continuity and greater flexibility to react to changing market conditions. But when considering private cloud security vs. public for an organization, take into account the differences.

Today, both models can be made secure, as cloud encryption can span both private and public clouds. Private clouds may make sense, for example, as a transitional strategy where an organization only moves some of its existing IT resources into the cloud to allay concerns about jumping into the cloud too fast. Some may end up opting for a hybrid cloud strategy, allowing them to optimally address their organizational concerns.

New breakthroughs in technology can help contribute to healthcare organizations’ increasing confidence in cloud security. Encryption is advancing to the point where organizations and their vendors can maintain maximum control over their sensitive data and management keys so they can be fully confident that security has not been sacrificed to productivity.

The post Surveying healthcare cloud encryption options, strategies appeared first on Porticor Cloud Security.

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More Stories By Gilad Parann-Nissany

Gilad Parann-Nissany, Founder and CEO at Porticor is a pioneer of Cloud Computing. He has built SaaS Clouds for medium and small enterprises at SAP (CTO Small Business); contributing to several SAP products and reaching more than 8 million users. Recently he has created a consumer Cloud at G.ho.st - a cloud operating system that delighted hundreds of thousands of users while providing browser-based and mobile access to data, people and a variety of cloud-based applications. He is now CEO of Porticor, a leader in Virtual Privacy and Cloud Security.

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