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IT People Still Hazy About Clouds, Study Says

Half of survey respondents don't know which cloud services have been deployed, much less whether they've been vetted for security
If you don't have a grip on cloud services and security in your organization, you are not alone, according to a study published today.

According to a survey conducted by Ponemon Institute and sponsored by CA, more than 50 percent of respondents in the U.S. say their organization is unaware of all the cloud services deployed in their enterprise today.

Only 47 percent of respondents believe that cloud services are evaluated for security prior to deployment.

The survey results suggest that some companies are pushing ahead with cloud technology implementations without properly evaluating the dangers, says Larry Ponemon, CEO and founder of the Ponemon Institute, which does security and privacy industry research.

"Cloud computing applications hold a great deal of promise for organizations, but regarding their adoption as a fait accompli and expecting IT to accommodate their use is an approach fraught with risk," Ponemon says. "The implications for information security and data privacy are potentially dire."

Fewer than 30 percent of respondents are confident they can control privileged user access to sensitive data in the cloud, the study says. Only 14 percent of respondents believe cloud computing will actually improve their organization's security posture.

While some organizations might be pushing ahead with cloud implementations, however, some are drawing the line at their most sensitive data, Ponemon reports. Thirty-eight percent of respondents agree that their organization has identified information deemed too sensitive to be stored in the cloud.

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