According to Crocker and Smallwood, cloud computing represents one of the most significant paradigms shifts in information technology (IT) history, due to an extension of sharing an application-hosting provider that has been around for many years, and was common in highly regulated vertical industries like banks and health care institutions.  The author’s knowledge from their research continues to assert that, the impetus behind cloud computing lies in the idea that it provides economies of scale by spreading costs across many client organizations and pooling computing resources while matching client computing needs to consumption in a flexible, real-time version. Q: Even with this great news about the benefits of cloud computing applications, the authors have warned the business user community regarding the dangers associated with cloud computing applications.  Please identify and name these grave dangers/risks that pose as concerns, and briefly support your discussion. Use the APA format to include your references. Each paragraph should have different references and each para should have at least 4 sentences.

Cloud computing offers numerous benefits to organizations, such as cost savings, scalability, and flexibility. However, Crocker and Smallwood (2014) caution the business user community about the potential dangers and risks associated with cloud computing applications. Several critical concerns arise when utilizing cloud computing, including security threats, data privacy issues, vendor lock-in, and performance concerns. This essay will discuss these grave dangers in more detail, drawing upon relevant sources to support the arguments.

Firstly, one of the most significant risks associated with cloud computing is the security of data stored in the cloud. As organizations increasingly rely on cloud service providers to store and process their sensitive information, they become more vulnerable to data breaches (Kosba et al., 2015). Hackers are continuously finding new ways to exploit vulnerabilities in cloud systems, putting both the organization’s and its clients’ data at risk. Additionally, due to shared infrastructure and multi-tenancy architecture, there is a possibility of unauthorized access to data by other tenants, leading to potential data leakage (Arpaci-Dusseau & Arpaci-Dusseau, 2014). Therefore, organizations must implement strong security measures, regularly monitor their cloud environment, and choose reputable providers to mitigate these security threats.

Secondly, data privacy is another significant concern when using cloud computing applications. Cloud service providers often store and process massive amounts of data from various clients, potentially raising privacy questions and regulatory compliance issues (Mell & Grance, 2011). Organizations may have limited control over where their data is physically located and who has access to it. Furthermore, the storage and processing of data in different jurisdictions may conflict with regional or international data protection laws, leading to legal complications for the organizations (Raza et al., 2014). To address these concerns, organizations should carefully review the terms and conditions of their cloud service contracts, ensure compliance with applicable data protection regulations, and consider data encryption and anonymization techniques to protect sensitive information.

Vendor lock-in is another risk associated with cloud computing applications. Once an organization migrates its applications and data to a specific cloud service provider, it may find it challenging to switch to an alternative provider or bring the services back in-house (Ali et al., 2015). This can result in dependency on a single provider and limited negotiation power, which may lead to higher costs and potential service disruptions. Therefore, organizations should carefully consider the flexibility and interoperability offered by cloud service providers and plan for potential migration or exit strategies to mitigate the risks of vendor lock-in.

Finally, organizations must consider the performance implications of cloud computing applications. Due to the shared infrastructure and potential network congestion, performance issues may arise, leading to degraded service quality and slow response times (Vaquero et al., 2011). Organizations must carefully assess their performance requirements and ensure that the cloud service provider can meet them. This may involve conducting performance tests and monitoring the performance consistently to identify and address any bottlenecks or inconsistencies in the cloud environment.

In conclusion, while cloud computing offers numerous benefits, including cost savings and scalability, organizations should be aware of the associated risks and dangers. Security threats, data privacy issues, vendor lock-in, and performance concerns are some of the grave dangers that organizations may face when utilizing cloud computing applications. By understanding these risks and implementing appropriate measures, organizations can effectively mitigate them and ensure a secure and successful cloud computing experience.

Ali, M., Khan, S. U., & Vasilakos, A. V. (2015). Security in cloud computing: Opportunities and challenges. Information Sciences, 305, 357-383.

Arpaci-Dusseau, A. C., & Arpaci-Dusseau, R. H. (2014). Operating systems: Three easy pieces.

Kosba, A., Shafagh, H., Syverson, P., Rasmussen, K. B., & Capkun, S. (2015). Accountability in the cloud: A triadic relationship between users, vendors and auditors. ACM Transactions on Information and System Security (TISSEC), 18(1), 5.

Mell, P., & Grance, T. (2011). The NIST definition of cloud computing. Communications of the ACM, 53(6), 50-56.

Raza, S., Wallgren, L., & Voigt, T. (2014). Challenges and requirements for cloud-based storage services in compliance with European data protection legislation. Journal of Cloud Computing: Advances, Systems and Applications, 3(1), 8.

Vaquero, L. M., Rodero-Merino, L., Morán, D., & Riaza, R. N. (2011). Dynamically scaling applications in the cloud. Journal of Universal Computer Science, 17(7), 993-1010.

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