The financial sector is overwhelmingly adopting cloud computing, but not without concern over the risks of doing so.
Google, together with Harris Poll, conducted one of the most comprehensive polls of the financial sector, surveying some 1,300 leaders in the financial services industry in the US, Canada, France, Germany, the UK, Hong Kong, Japan, Singapore and Australia.
A whopping 83% of companies are already using cloud computing. Interestingly, hybrid cloud was the most popular option, at 38%. Single cloud deployment came in second at 28%, and multicloud deployments came in third at 17%. Of those institutions not already using multicloud deployments, 88% were considering adopting it in the next 12 months.
One of the biggest challenges financial institutions face are regulatory issues.
The research also points to steps that regulators could take to provide additional clarity and guidance, such as aligning regulatory reviews across agencies to avoid fragmentation; developing regulatory “safe harbors” for cloud adopters based on adherence to accepted standards and best practices; training regulatory staff on emerging tech; and advancing data reporting requirements via cloud and related technologies.
Similarly, security is a major factor when considering cloud computing. Many organizations once viewed security as a downside, but now see the benefits for data and IT protection. Despite this, at least one in three admitted to shortcomings in their organizations, with data and security being one of the top ones.
“While many banks have already deployed hybrid cloud environments, others are still in various stages of planning and deploying,” said Jerry Silva, research vice president for IDC Financial Insights. “Clearly, hybrid infrastructure is a reality, and financial institutions must focus not only on leveraging the modern infrastructure model to gain efficiencies, resilience and agility, but also on taking the necessary steps to manage such environments, including the security and compliance of cloud services.”
Google’s poll provides valuable insights into the financial sector’s transition to the cloud and is well worth a read in its entirety (PDF).