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Data sharing and caring behind firewalls

An aspect that has had profound influence on computing systems is the way storage systems have evolved over the years. The early 20th century marked the beginning of electronic storage with the invention of the magnetic tape. From then on, it is fascinating to see the steady growth of technology in this segment leading to yet another innovation – Cloud computing.

Storage technology is poised to transform computing in the coming years as inventions lead to even higher storage capacities with greater access speeds at declining costs.

As technologies habituate to convergence, so will data. The approach today is to centralise storage, and cloud computing stands at the forefront in this context.

But, centralised data has its own disadvantages too. Needless to say, a key factor that will call for special care and attention is data security. Individuals and companies will only demur to move their confidential data into public domain, an issue greatly aggravated by the recent crisis faced by the online dating service, Ashley Madison. What then could be the way out?

Solutions like Aerofs, Egnyte, Soonr, Evernote, Omnidrive, HighTail suggest there is more to Google drive and the Dropbox approach. Centralising and sharing storage behind firewalls can allay fears of malicious access or unauthorised use of confidential data. The basic idea is to have private clouds guarded by firewalls. Additionally, the networks connected to such clouds have high data speeds thereby enhancing performance.

Traditional cloud storage systems store data on third party servers. A deviation from this paradigm is storing and syncing data on devices designated by the user.

Users benefit from SAAS applications that permit capturing, organising and finding information across multiple platforms. Having a common web interface that provides file access, edit and share capabilities will also be nice to have. Changes in data could be tracked using version history.

In a nutshell, this approach of maintaining data is directed at redefining cloud with better controls, privacy and scalability. Users get a simple yet intuitive file sharing experience while their departments get data security and control.