Security will displace cost and agility as top reason government agencies will move to cloud: Gartner

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Public cloud options now offer the scalability, computing power, storage and security to better enable digital government platforms and meet rising expectations for performance and value, reports Gartner.

The analyst firm predicts that by 2018, increased security will displace cost savings and agility as the primary driver for government agencies to move to public cloud within their jurisdictions.

"Many cloud service providers, such as Amazon Web Services, Microsoft and Google, invest heavily in incorporating higher levels of security into their products to continue building confidence that their data is more secure," says Neville Cannon, research director at Gartner. "Many of these providers can invest more than what most nations could afford, let alone the average government agency."

Many of these providers can invest more than what most nations could afford, let alone the average government agency.Neville Cannon, Gartner

Gartner recommends government CIOs to use the public cloud in a controlled manner; experience it first hand and develop necessary skills. “Continuing to not do so is not an option,” says Gartner in the report Predicts 2016: Government Continues to Adapt to the Digital Era.

The report notes web-scale infrastructure as a service (IaaS) cloud service providers now incorporate higher levels of security in their products than many government agencies do for data at low and medium classifications.

Subject to appropriate analysis of the risks involved, the provider's capabilities and the technologies chosen to protect the data, public sector CIOs should also look to use public cloud as a secure platform for hosting both public and low to medium levels of sensitive data, the report states.

“Identify all the issues with building a private government cloud, and understand what limitations it may represent, in conjunction with the ongoing levels of investment needed to maintain its functionality and security."

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Copyright © 2016 IDG Communications, Inc.

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