Security Experts:

Organizations Confident in Sending Sensitive Data to the Cloud Despite Security Fears

According to the results of a cloud security survey conducted by Ponemon Institute, sponsored by Thales, a growing number of organizations are pushing sensitive and confidential data into the cloud. This movement of data happens with confidence, the study says, despite concerns over data protection.

Earlier today, SecurityWeek posted tips on cloud security policy creation, so the Thales study seems to align well here. Based on the numbers, more than 50 percent of the respondents (4,000 organizations) confirmed that their organizations store sensitive or confidential data to the cloud, which is an increase of about 10 percent when compared to last year’s study.

Of those who transfer this type of data to the cloud, 60 percent said that they believe the cloud provider has the primary responsibility for data protection, and 22 percent said the consumer was responsible. Yet, when it comes to IaaS deployments, these figures are reversed. However just over half of respondents say they don’t know what their cloud provider actually does to protect their data.

Yesterday, in a report dealing with a separate study of 798 IT professionals from Ponemon, it was revealed that more than 80 percent of them did not know how much of their organization's data is stored on cloud file sharing services or mobile devices. Further, most organizations did not have technical controls in place to protect regulated data on mobile devices.

"Staying in control of sensitive or confidential data is paramount for most organizations today and yet our survey shows they are transferring ever more of their most valuable data assets to the cloud. In this, our second year of conducting this survey, we wanted to dig a little deeper and explore the difference in attitudes about the most common types of cloud services – IaaS, PaaS and SaaS,” commented Larry Ponemon, chairman and founder, Ponemon Institute in a statement.

“Perceived responsibility for data protection, awareness of security measures, confidence and impact on overall security posture illustrate important regional and service type differences but overall the trend is positive. Respondents generally feel better informed, more confident in their cloud service providers and more positive about the impact on their security posture compared with last year.”

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Steve Ragan is a security reporter and contributor for SecurityWeek. Prior to joining the journalism world in 2005, he spent 15 years as a freelance IT contractor focused on endpoint security and security training.