To Cloud or Not to Cloud? –

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To Cloud or Not to Cloud?

What effective security management looks like in 2024

The cloud is a fact of life across all IT applications—and security is no exception. While most software applications today have moved to the cloud, security is a bit different. There are significant technical and budgetary challenges, particularly as the increasing volume (and image quality) of security cameras in use results in an enormous amount of video data transferred and stored in the cloud.

Each of the 100 million individual cameras in the United States generates as much video data as a Netflix movie—every day. Security departments also tend to run their own infrastructure—and, due to cyber concerns and historical precedent, they like to have most equipment on site.

But the benefits of cloud apply to security as clearly as any other application: the cloud offers better manageability, improved scalability, lower maintenance costs, less on-prem equipment (like expensive servers) and increased cyber security as systems can better be kept updated.

The Cloud Approach

When it comes to the cloud, there are two approaches: single vendor end-to-end or open system. While single-vendor solutions may sound straightforward, customers may find themselves locked into that one vendor’s product ecosystem, confined by price increases and other inconveniences.

Sometimes vendors do not own the whole technology stack, but have instead OEMed part of the solution, such as the surveillance cameras. That can make managing and updating from a cyber security perspective difficult. That said, the simplicity of a single partner to turn to for things like tech support can be a significant advantage.

Open system, on the other hand, gives customers the ability to integrate different edge devices, or repurpose their existing edge devices if they change vendors. However, depending on the strength of the technology partnership between the vendors creating the complete solution, system management and cybersecurity can still be a significant challenge.

Today’s organizations are increasingly seeking to avoid locking themselves into an individual vendor by embracing a platform-based model built on having the flexibility to shift between single and multivendor best-of-breed systems based on strong partnerships rather than exclusive agreements. The need for cybersecurity has highlighted the value of aligning platform management and device manufacturer as organizations look for any advantage they can get against cybercriminals.

An open-platform approach that emphasizes strong, best-of-breed technology partnerships is one of the most important ways today’s organizations can ensure their approach to the cloud is as effective and secure as possible.

The Race to the Cloud and Return to the Edge

As technology has grown more advanced, cloud storage has become more complex. Today’s cameras produce higher quality video, with a greater level of detail—in fact, Quad HD (QHD) and even 4K video are now standard for many systems. This, along with higher frame rates and retention times, has had a significant impact on both storage and bandwidth needs, which have increased accordingly—and so has the cost.

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