Cloud Security v. On-Premises: Which Option is Safer for Your Business


Despite the evolution of cloud computing from on-premises old-school IT (Information Technology) to the cloud based modern workplace, there are still many small business owners who are skeptical about moving their sensitive business data away from their trusted on-premises servers to the cloud.   

While most businesses today have taken cloud IT experts advice to leverage the many benefits of cloud computing, some small business owners still express concerns about cybersecurity in the cloud.  

For these businesses, storing their files on-premises feels subconsciously “safer” because the information is physically closer to their location. However, this is a quirk of human psychology that does not apply to the realities of cybersecurity. 

Simply put, cloud computing is far more secure (and usually for a lower price) than on-premises solutions could ever provide – and there is ample evidence to prove it.  

Here are several reasons the Cloud Security Solutions are safer than a traditional on-premises server environment or 3rd party co-lo center:

  • Microsoft is one of the largest global cloud solution providers, employing more than 3,500 cybersecurity experts working around the clock to protect Microsoft 365 and Azure. Internal IT teams at small and medium-sized businesses simply cannot provide the same level of expertise in cybersecurity that Microsoft can. Microsoft has made it their mission to stay ahead of cyber-attacks and protect Microsoft 365 and Azure from outside threats.
  • By moving your email and file storage to Microsoft’s 365 cloud, you are transferring all the operational risk and financial expense, running, and backing up servers within your own company. 
  • Not only can you transfer all the operational risk and expense to Microsoft, but all the cloud security you need is also free and included in your Microsoft 365 license you are currently paying for. There is nothing extra to pay for. 
  • Apart from the risk of a cyberattack, physical servers take on risks of running your IT from your own office: like a fire, or water leak, or an extended power failure. 
  • Other risks of operating your IT from within your office include internal threats from within your organization – for instance, a disgruntled employee. The cloud creates further separation from humans and human error by providing top-notch defenses for physical server environments.
  • Security breaches are often due to outdated equipment and patching, which you do not have to worry about with the cloud. Microsoft is continually updating their cloud environment, as a licensed consumer, you do not have to worry about having the most up-to-date servers or operating systems anymore, nor do you have to plan and budget for the large capital expenses to stay current.
  • Many co-locations or on-premises data centers are a hodgepodge of aging legacy technology. This makes them a nightmare to maintain and secure due to the difficulties of reconciling all these disparate systems, some of which are no longer supported or updated.
  • Malicious actors have many ways of exploiting these flaws in on-premises systems, from unpatched security holes to phishing emails that seek to collect your employees’ passwords. The cloud streamlines how you can fix these issues, which means vulnerabilities will get patched immediately, compared to many on-premises situations which often require a manual, lengthy process, which sometimes takes weeks or months depending on how busy your IT team may be.  

When it comes to protecting your company data, the physical location matters less than the means of access—who can view and use the information that has been stored on the server. This means that attackers’ main goal is to find and capitalize on existing vulnerabilities. Microsoft 365’s built-in cloud cybersecurity tool is known as MS Intune; it has several ways of protecting your employees regardless of if they are in the office or working remotely. These latest security tools are steps ahead of the attackers and are already working to protect against modern security attacks.  

Getting Started with a Cloud Security Provider

With regulatory compliance challenges increasing worldwide, keeping your data secure is only one piece of the puzzle. Your cloud security posture now needs to account for compliance with HIPAA, PCI-DSS, GDPR. A cloud security provider such as ANP can check off these compliance boxes for you and prove that you are doing everything you need to get the best cyber insurance premium available today.  

Today, you are far more secure if your data is in the cloud and you are working with a Microsoft Cloud Solutions provider like ANP (Advanced Network Products) to ensure that your cloud environment is proactively managed, maintained and secured.  Visit us online to learn more about ANP’s Cybersecurity services for small businesses.  

Are you interested in a cybersecurity risk assessment to determine if your security practice is up to par? Contact ANP today at 215.572.0111 to get started! 

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