Don't get too used to VPNs and unencrypted data. According to some, we’ll see start to see the end of both in 2014.
Last week, we shared some bold 2014 predictions for the cloud-based file sharing space courtesy of Ted Hulsy of eFolder. Among them, that MSPs would begin to block consumer-grade file sharing services; that the need to scale to thousands of users would become a priority, as well as the growing importance of multi-tenant admin features. Give it a read if you haven’t already.
Tis the season for bold predictions of course, and the folks over at the Sky High Networks recently got into the action as well. In their latest post, they highlighted 11 Cloud Computing Predictions for 2014, and two predictions in particular caught our attention. Those predictions:
- The disappearance of unencrypted data
- The end of the VPN as we know it
We wanted to offer our own take on these predictions, as they will have a big impact on the MSP landscape if they indeed become a reality. Let’s take a closer look.
First, the disappearance of unencrypted data. They write:
Ask any digital security professional for tips on how to better secure anything from the cloud to mobile end points to social media, and every single one will mention encryption at some point. In 2014, data will be encrypted everywhere – in motion, at rest, on corporate-owned smartphones, on employee-owned mobile device, etc.
As more applications and services reside in the cloud, the focus on how best to encrypt data will shift away from endpoints to cloud services and networks. The weak link in data encryption is the endpoint, but in 2014 that weak link will start to be eliminated, with important data never stored on end devices.
In 2014, enterprises will also demand encryption services that encrypt data no matter where it resides. Soon, there will be no such thing as unencrypted data.
Our take: Couldn’t agree more. Businesses that recognize the need for file encryption (and other business-grade file sharing features) are rapidly becoming the norm, not the exception. While some have chosen to apply encryption to only those files deemed “highly sensitive” for legal or compliance purposes, it will eventually make more sense to encrypt everything – after all, why take the chance? Why spend time needlessly categorizing and keeping track of which data should reside where?
And then there is the end of the VPN as we know it:
Mobile devices access more enterprise services each and every day, and the way most enterprises protect data as it travels from applications to mobile devices is through a VPN. However, even simple to use VPN clients have their issues, such as reduced battery life and misconfigurations and connectivity issues…As everything from tire pressure gauges to soil sensors to fitness monitors connects to the Internet, new ways to encrypt wireless data traffic will emerge. The agent-based approach will start to be phased out in 2014.
Our take: If unencrypted data no longer exists, it follows that the VPN will become a thing of the past as well. Depending on who you ask, VPNs are already being phased out by companies, if for no other reason than convenience’s sake. How many times have you (or your clients) submitted a ticket from a faulty VPN? If the data is encrypted, they become more of a hassle than they are worth.
The cloud is changing the way we do business. Most people are only reacting to the advancements in technology, others have seen it coming and have prepared themselves for the changes ahead. Do you agree with these predictions? Be sure to let us know in the comments section below.