As technology advances, companies must adapt to take advantage of these rapid changes. One of these most recent advancements is in cloud productivity, the use of cloud-based tools to keep employees efficient through easy access and collaboration. Many cloud services boast that as long as you have an internet connection, your necessary files are right at your fingertips.
Using cloud productivity is an essential part of the growth of enterprises and connected devices. However, some organizations have been hesitant to adopt it due to cybersecurity concerns.
Nevertheless, over 60% of security professionals now believe that the risk of a breach is the same or lower in public cloud environments than on-premise. This change in mindset shows a shift in the IT community, and the cloud is already becoming more widely used.
This guide aims to explain how enterprises and managed service providers can connect to the cloud. It also discusses the issues that can arise with different types of connections and recommends dedicated connection solutions, such as Epsilon’s Cloud Connect, for connecting to cloud service providers (CSP).
The Benefits of the Public Cloud in the Modern Enterprise
Cloud computing is widely used by businesses and is accessible through the internet. Those who already use cloud services understand the many benefits it brings to modern business.
Ultimately, the public cloud helps businesses become faster, more flexible, productive, and reduces costs. The increasing use of cloud applications has driven the rapid growth of the market in recent years. Cloud services result in modern businesses that are more agile, flexible, cost-efficient, and scalable.
Challenges of Connecting to the Cloud
Unfortunately, the rapid advancement of modern technology has resulted in some snags along the way. When businesses move to a cloud environment, they often prioritize cost and scalability over the network infrastructure. However, they soon realize that their connections are not strong or secure enough to support advanced workloads and applications.
As the demand for efficient cloud computing continues to skyrocket, the network infrastructure providing these services has struggled to keep up with constant connectivity at times.
These weak connections can cause delays and issues with response times, which can create major problems for businesses over time. Network operators also neglect to consider this when offering connectivity to businesses, leaving the public internet as the weakest link in the service delivery process.
It’s no secret that businesses require reliable delivery of their cloud services, including essential applications and IT strategies. As a result, technology experts are working to develop solutions to these widespread issues.
Connecting to the Public Cloud
Businesses and their employees can connect to the public cloud in a few different ways. These ways include the public internet, virtual private networks, and direct cloud connections.
The Public Internet
Using the public internet for cloud services might be easy to set up, but it’s not always the best choice. The public internet is often overlooked, yet it’s a crucial weak link in delivering cloud services.
The public internet is not a good option for organizations dealing with sensitive or critical data or those wanting high visibility or control over their infrastructure. This is because public internet routes are dynamic and shared, which can lead to congestion.
When the most direct link is unavailable, data packets are routed through the next best option, which you have no control over. This often leads to packet loss and increased latency.
Cyber attacks are on the rise, and the public internet is where they occur. Relying on the public internet makes you vulnerable to cyber attacks like Distributed Denial-of-Service (DDoS).
These malicious attacks can create significant issues for businesses, leading to congestion and packet loss for all traffic traversing infected routers and links. Multiple handoffs of packets between internet service providers (ISPs) create instability in the connection, and there are more points of failure and attack.
How the Public Internet Puts Business’ Data at Risk
By using the public internet, businesses can face several key vulnerabilities.
Firstly, the delivery of data may slow down as it is repeatedly passed and processed, resulting in longer delivery times.
Secondly, bad actors, botnets, and DDoS attacks are on the rise, which can negatively impact your customers’ experience and resources. This could lead to potential damage to your business’s reputation.
Thirdly, multi-hops mean that there are more points of failure and a wider surface area for attack. This increases the risk of potential loss of data or downtime, which could be catastrophic. Even a short period of downtime can result in significant commercial losses, estimated at $5,600 per minute by Gartner.
Finally, the damage to the reputation of your business may be extensive. You should always ensure that your enterprise has robust security measures in place to protect against cyber attacks.
Virtual Private Network (VPN)
A VPN is a private network that can be created quickly over a more open network, and it doesn’t cost much more than hosting compute power and total bandwidth transferred.
Though VPN networks are private, VPN connections to cloud service providers (CSPs) are still delivered at Layer 3 via a service provider across the public internet, which means that many of the same problems remain. This includes performance issues from inefficient routing, network attacks, and congested connections.
Servers transfer data via a VPN in large packets that must be broken down before being forwarded on. This fragmentation and reassembly can cause CPU and bandwidth overhead, which slows down the overall performance.
Overall, there are several key reasons why a VPN might not be the best solution for your enterprise. These include inconsistent connection speed and availability, limited long-term sustainability, public internet connectivity, reliance on your ISP to route traffic correctly, and the risk of MTU fragmentation of packets and reassembly, which can impact overall performance.
Direct Cloud Connections
Direct connect is the fastest and most secure way to access and connect to your cloud environments. Instead of using the public internet or VPN tunnels, you can use internet-bypass solutions to connect to cloud service providers (CSPs) directly.
CSPs like Amazon Web Services (AWS), Microsoft Azure, Alibaba Cloud, and Google Cloud Platform have created partner programs to enhance cloud connectivity and automation capabilities.
These programs, such as AWS Direct Connect, Microsoft Azure ExpressRoute, Alibaba Express Connect, and Google Cloud Interconnect, allow you to connect directly to the cloud of your choice, eliminating the performance, quality of service, and security problems of the public internet.
Cloud on-ramps and internet-bypass global connectivity solutions are available to help you connect to cloud services with a simple data center interconnection, which connects your equipment to the CSP via Layer 2 Ethernet with speeds from 50Mbps up to 10Gbps.
Global connectivity providers like Epsilon can provide you with the backhaul connectivity you need to connect your premises or alternative facilities to the public cloud(s) via a Network as a Service (NaaS) model or last-mile delivery solutions.
With NaaS platforms like Infiny by Epsilon, advanced tools and cloud ecosystems automate direct cloud connections, reducing time spent on provisioning and the need for additional manpower and resources.
Establishing a direct link to your CSPs can ensure that your sensitive data is transferred correctly between your facilities and the public cloud, with a reduced chance of downtime or interference.
Direct cloud connections offer several benefits, including dedicated interconnection that bypasses the public internet and its hazards, more stable and predictable connections with lower latency, removal of multi-hops and associated security concerns, and no need to invest in your own global infrastructure or understand how to configure BGP.
Direct cloud connections can also save you money by avoiding significant data transfer fees.
Cloud Connect by Epsilon
Epsilon’s Cloud Connect is a secure and private way for businesses to connect to the world’s largest cloud service providers (CSPs) like AWS, Microsoft Azure, and Google Cloud. It works through Epsilon’s award-winning NaaS platform, Infiny, which provides a convenient and cost-effective way to connect without compromising security or reliability.
With Infinity, you can turn up a network service anywhere on Epsilon’s network fabric and connect to multiple CSPs around the world with real-time analytics on your networking connection’s performance.
Your mission-critical data is protected over Epsilon’s MEF-certified carrier-grade global private network, and you can rely on Epsilon’s over 220 Points of Presence (PoP) worldwide to connect you wherever you are.
Epsilon also offers a dedicated team of experts to keep your critical operations running 24/7, and you can scale your network infrastructure up and down with an on-demand connectivity model.
This makes connecting to CSPs across multiple geographies easier than ever before. With Cloud Connect, you can connect to the world’s largest cloud platforms without the need for multiple contracts.
Cloud productivity is an essential part of modern business and can bring many benefits, including increased flexibility, productivity, and cost-efficiency.
Direct cloud connections are the fastest and most secure way to access and connect to your cloud environments, and solutions like Epsilon’s Cloud Connect offer a secure and private way for businesses to connect to the world’s largest cloud service providers.
By using these solutions, businesses can ensure that their sensitive data is transferred correctly without facing downtime and interference.