"The benefits for hoteliers of moving business applications to the cloud are numerous," writes Bernard Ellis, vice president of Infor Hospitality, in a Hotel Business Review guest column headlined "Cloud Best Practices: 11 Strategic Questions for Hoteliers Considering Moving to the Cloud."
Initial costs are lower. Systems can be deployed faster. Changes can be made more easily. Long-term return on investment is higher. Disaster recovery is easier.
"However, many hoteliers are hesitant about moving to the cloud because with 24/7 guest interaction, a back-end system glitch could have negative implications on customer satisfaction. Compromising guest profiles or credit card information could be disastrous, making many hospitality companies uncertain about cloud deployment. In order to ensure security when utilizing SaaS-based business applications, hoteliers should focus on vendor selection and best practices for network safety. Selecting the right technology provider who employs these practices and is transparent on how and where data will be stored is critical in minimizing any risks associated with utilizing cloud technology," Ellis writes.
"… With security top of mind for cloud deployment, decision-makers should ask these questions before choosing a technology provider for their project:
1. How in-depth is your security strategy?
2. How are your products developed to enable security in the cloud?
3. Will the cloud network be separated from the general corporate network?
4. Will the network remain protected, even if users do not employ security best practices?
5. What physical measures will be taken to protect the infrastructure?
6. What mandatory IT infrastructure requirements will be used to support security?
7. What operational practices will be utilized to support security?
8. Does the vendor have staff dedicated exclusively to its cloud technology?
9. What monitoring processes will be implemented to track potential security threats?
10. Is the system ISO-27001 compliant?
11. Does the vendor conduct business everywhere that you do?