There is so much hype about the pros of going cloud for software, it has tons of benefits, I must agree. But, as a business owner who uses the cloud extensively; some things sit continually in the back of my mind and there is little around to allay the fears on this:
1. Once you are hooked, they can charge you whatever they want. In May 2013, Office 365 E3 was R186,50 per user – it is now R275 per user. That’s a 47,45% percentage increase in 2 years.
2. Your data is on someone else’s servers – no matter how you paint this, all your data is out of your control if something goes wrong or they flip a switch.
3. Backing up your data is no easy feat, especially on Office 365.
4. We will never really know what they are doing with all our data, or if it’s being sold. I’ve recently noticed being pitched to via those annoying ad placements all over the web by something that was only ever in my email, something I’ve never done a web search on. I can’t prove it because it was so quick and I had closed the site already, but I did notice it.
5. The software changes at the drop of the hat and you have no control or say over it. You sign on today and it looks one way, tomorrow it’s something different. Facebook and Office 365 are the worst culprits on this. It makes documenting anything from the cloud a nightmare.
6. No internet = no data = business stops. This is Africa, it happens all the time.
So yeah, cloud is very convenient, but we must not forget that Big Brother is always watching and ultimately holds all the cards…