Hybrid Cloud Questions Financial Services Should Ask Themselves Before Migration

While speaking at Google Next 2018, HSBC’s Group CIO shared his organization’s list of internal vetting questions for its hybrid cloud model.

It’s no secret that the hybrid cloud, a model where an organization can leverage both on-premises and off-premises resources within the same system, is appealing to organizations who crave efficiency, agility and innovation. But not so fast —there are increased complexities that also come with managing a hybrid cloud environment.

In fact, “39 percent of organizations that currently deploy hybrid IT environments cite increased IT complexity” as a challenge, according to “The Modern IT Infrastructure Insight Report” by CDW.

These complexities are even more pronounced in an industry like financial services, where regulatory and security standards are extra stringent and highly scrutinized.

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While speaking onstage at Google Next 2018 in San Francisco, Darryl West, Group CIO for HSBC, shared his organization’s list of hybrid cloud vetting questions, which the organization used internally as they prepared to leverage both on-premises and off-premises infrastructure. The questions he shared can serve a useful starting point for any financial services company looking to get into a hybrid cloud setup:

  1. What will our regulators think?
  2. Do we understand the risks?
  3. How do we control access?
  4. Do we know where the data will be?
  5. How do we know what’s happened?
  6. Who controls encryption keys?
  7. How will we work together?

The questions asked won’t engender easy answers. It might take several rounds and meetings with various stakeholders to figure out who should have access to what corporate data and when. HSBC had to take its hybrid model plan to its entire management board, said West. But if a financial services organization can check all of the necessary boxes and get to a hybrid cloud model, it can certainly pay off handsomely.

As West reviewed some of the many benefits his organization has seen from moving to the hybrid cloud, he shared this notable tidbit.

“Our Global Liquidity Solution allows us to calculate the liquidity position of a country within 30 minutes rather than 10 hours,” he said. “Using [Google Cloud’s] BigQuery, we are able to run our financial crime analytics up to 10X faster.”

The name of the modern IT game — yes, even for financial services — is about speed, innovation and agility. And those things do still matter, even in a more regulated environment. So, the sooner you start asking the necessary questions, the sooner you can get to the best of what the hybrid cloud model has to offer.

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Sep 25 2018

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