Oh data, where art thou?


There are many questions about data being asked in boardrooms across Australia. Unfortunately, simple questions aren’t getting straightforward answers. 

According to an article featured in Business Spectator by Wayne Goss, regional vice-president, Asia-Pacific & Japan at software company SugarCRM, answers to questions regarding the location and control they of data may be greeted with a long and frustrating answer.

Goss warns that not knowing where your data is, or how it is managed, is a cause for concern. He adds that while advancements like “ubiquitous broadband, commodity storage, virtualisation, internet protocols and low cost compute power have enabled corporates to strip out technology and management costs while simultaneously improving service delivery”, such developments have come with a trade-off.

Goss states that the conversation among board executives has now started to change, especially around data management when using cloud services. He adds that while corporate boards have been happy to sign off on new cloud services that deliver better services at lower cost, “many are now starting to better understand the resulting loss of control.”

He says this shift in attitude demonstrates that there is a big re-think underway as boards look to gain more control and a better understanding of their companies’ data.

In the same way that many consumers are starting to re-think what apps they allow on their mobiles, the corporate world is taking a good look at cloud services to better understand the status of their data.

He adds that the high-profile data breaches of the past two years are driving this change, citing Target, Home Depot and Sony Pictures as examples of costly catastrophes that have brought the issue closer to home for many directors.

Goss adds that aside from security risks, there are equally important regulatory issues at play with cloud computing, with some companies holding data and applications with local cloud providers now finding their data is being held offshore – perhaps contrary to the regulatory environments in which they operate.