Security is top factor in choosing cloud vendors

Security is the top consideration for Asian businesses when choosing their cloud strategy and cloud vendors, according to a survey commissioned by Alibaba Cloud.

The survey was conducted by NielsenIQ from the end of September to early October 2022, collecting feedback through online questionnaires from 1,000 cloud strategy decision-makers in small to large-sized organisations that are currently using cloud services.

Respondents were based in Hong Kong, Malaysia, Singapore, the Philippines, Indonesia, Thailand, Japan and South Korea. They represented industries that include financial services, gaming, internet and technology, manufacturing, media and telecommunications, public sector and retail.

Findings show that respondents listed security as the top reason for choosing their current strategy — private cloud (74%); hybrid cloud (70%); and public cloud (58%).

In choosing their cloud vendors, more than two-thirds (69%) of respondents said security is the most important consideration, outweighing other factors such as availability (58%) and cost (55%).

The emphasis on security in cloud vendor selection is consistent across markets and industries, especially for the Philippines (85%), Indonesia (82%) and Thailand (78%), and for sectors such as manufacturing, media and telecommunications, and financial services. 

In the previous survey released in 2021, “security credentials” was also identified as the top reason for choosing cloud vendors by a majority (58%) of respondents.

Beyond security, insufficient training for employees (private cloud: 42%; public cloud: 37%) and lack of budget (private cloud: 36%; public cloud: 36%) are the other major barriers businesses experience when implementing an effective cloud strategy. 

Respondents, regardless of the type of strategy adopted, quoted “improved operational efficiency” as the biggest benefit of cloud adoption — hybrid cloud (71%); public cloud (62%); and private cloud (60%).

Public cloud users also see improved business continuity (47%), better support for remote workers (45%) and improved security and risk management (44%) as the other benefits of adopting the cloud.

The survey showed that, the largest share of businesses (38%) are using Asia-based vendors. In an improvement from the previous survey, an overwhelming majority (91%) of businesses reported that their experience in using cloud services either met or exceeded their expectations, demonstrating the high quality of cloud services available in Asia.

Businesses in the manufacturing (42%) tend to use Asia-based vendors while a higher percentage of respondents in the retail (45%) and public sector (45%) favor local vendors.