How IaaS Services Help Drive Digital Transformation of Businesses

How IaaS Services Help Drive Digital Transformation of Businesses
Without IaaS services, businesses face high upfront costs and slower time-to-market, hindering its growth. Embracing IaaS services with compliance to regulatory measures fosters digital transformation.


Contents

1. Introduction
2. Regulatory Requirements
3. Role of IaaS in Digital Transformation 4. Key IaaS Services for Digital Transformation 5. Use Cases of IaaS in Digital Transformation 6. Leading Providers of IaaS 7. Conclusion


1. Introduction

The article highlights infrastructure-as-a-service (IaaS) services, which are crucial in driving digital transformation for businesses. By delivering scalable computing resources, reducing IT infrastructure costs, and enabling a greater focus on core competencies, IaaS is helping businesses innovate faster and stay competitive in the rapidly evolving digital landscape. Further, the article elaborates on the three significant regulations to be considered for regulatory requirements. As businesses continue to embrace digital transformation, IaaS has emerged as a key enabler for organizations looking to achieve their goals. IaaS allows businesses to quickly and easily scale their computing resources up or down while reducing their IT infrastructure costs. This, in turn, enables businesses to focus on their core competencies, innovate faster, and stay competitive in today's fast-paced digital landscape. In this article, we will explore the ways in which IaaS is driving digital transformation, as well as the various services offered by IaaS providers that are helping businesses achieve their objectives and the use cases that follow.


2. Regulatory Requirements

During cloud adoption and migration to IaaS, organizations must comply with regulatory requirements before, during, and after migration to the cloud.


2.1 Adhering to Regulations Before Migration

Organizations must identify the relevant regulations that apply to their industry and geographic location. This includes:


2.1.1. Data Protection Laws

These laws define how personal and sensitive data should be handled and protected. Organizations must comply with these laws when collecting, storing, processing, and sharing private and sensitive data. Examples include the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) in the European Union and the California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA) in the United States.


2.1.2. Industry-Specific Regulations

These regulations apply to specific industries like healthcare, finance, and government. In addition, these regulations may define particular security and data protection requirements that organizations must comply with. Examples are the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) in the healthcare industry and the Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS) in the finance industry.


2.1.3. International Laws

These laws apply to organizations operating in multiple countries or transferring data across international borders. These laws may vary based on the countries involved and define specific data protection and privacy requirements. Examples include the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) in the European Union and the Cross-Border Privacy Rules (CBPR) in the Asia-Pacific region.


2.2. Confirming Standards During Migration

Organizations must ensure that they meet regulatory requirements while transferring data and applications to the cloud. This involves:


2.2.1. Access Management

This refers to controlling who can access data and applications in the cloud. Organizations must ensure only authorizedpersonnel can access sensitive data and specific applications during migration. This can be achieved by implementing access controls such as multi-factor authentication and role-based access control.


2.2.2. Data Encryption

This refers to converting data into code to prevent unauthorized access. During migration, organizations must ensure that sensitive data is encrypted both in transit and at rest. This can be achieved by using encryption technologies, such as Transport Layer Security (TLS) and Advanced Encryption Standard (AES).


2.2.3. Data Residency

This refers to the legal requirements around where data can be stored and processed. Organizations must comply with these requirements during migration to avoid potential legal and regulatory consequences. This may involve ensuring data is stored and processed within specific geographic locations or complies with industry-specific regulations.


2.3. Complying with Requirements After Migration

Organizations must continue to meet regulatory requirements through ongoing monitoring and reporting. This includes:


2.3.1. Regular Review and Updation of Security Measures

This refers to the ongoing process of reviewing and improving the security measures that are in place to protect data and assets from potential threats. This includes identifying vulnerabilities, updating software and hardware, implementing new security policies and procedures, and training employees on best practices.


2.3.2. Data Protection

This refers to the measures taken to safeguard sensitive and confidential data from unauthorized access, use, or disclosure. Proper data protection includes using encryption, access controls, firewalls, and other security technologies to prevent unauthorized access to the data center and implementing processes and procedures for securely handling and disposing of data.


2.3.3. Audit and Reporting

This refers to businesses' legal and regulatory requirements to regularly audit and report on their security practices and data protection measures. This includes complying with industry-specific standards and regulations, such as the Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS) or the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA), and conducting internal and external audits to ensure compliance with these standards and regulations.


3. Role of IaaS in Digital Transformation

The role of IaaS in businesses is to configure, deploy, and manage cloud infrastructure environments or applications through cross-technology administration (virtual networks, operating systems, databases), scripting, monitoring automation execution, and managing incidents with a focus on service restoration.


3.1. Overview of Digital Transformation in Business

IaaS provides a flexible, scalable, and customizable infrastructure that can easily be managed and optimized, allowing organizations to focus on their core business objectives and maximize their productivity and efficiency.

IaaS provides businesses access to virtualized computing resources, such as virtual machines, storage, and networking, which can be provisioned and managed through a web-based interface or API. This allows businesses to quickly deploy and scale their infrastructure without worrying about the underlying hardware and infrastructure.

IaaS enables businesses to focus more on their core competencies. By outsourcing IT infrastructure management to IaaS providers, businesses can focus more on their core business functions and leave control of their IT systems to the experts. In addition, by leveraging the cloud, businesses can reduce their capital investment in buying, deploying, and managing physical servers and storage devices.

A report found that companies that have embraced digital transformation are 23 times more likely to acquire new customers, 6 times more likely to retain existing customers, and 19 times more likely to be profitable.

(Source: McKinsey & Company)

According to a study, the top benefits of digital transformation for businesses include increased efficiency (43%), better customer satisfaction (41%), and increased profitability (36%).

(Source: Accenture)

3.2. Benefits of IaaS for Digital Transformation Initiation

Apart from the benefits like improved agility, robust security, quick scalability, better flexibility, and cost savings, IaaS has the following benefits:
  •  Predictable Costs:
    IaaS providers typically offer transparent pricing models, which enable businesses to predict their IT costs more accurately and avoid unexpected expenses.
     
  •  Enhanced Compliance:
    IaaS providers often have compliance certifications, such as SOC 2, HIPAA, and PCI DSS, which can help businesses meet their regulatory compliance requirements more efficiently.
     
  •  Geographic Flexibility:
    IaaS enables businesses to deploy their IT infrastructure across different geographic regions, allowing the customer experience to soar in other markets with low latency and high availability.
     
  •  Disaster Recovery:
    IaaS providers typically have built-in disaster recovery capabilities, allowing businesses to quickly recover from data loss or infrastructure failures without significant downtime or data loss.
     
  •  Increased Innovation:
    By outsourcing their infrastructure management to IaaS providers, businesses can focus on innovation and new product development rather than infrastructure maintenance and management.


4. Key IaaS Services for Digital Transformation


4.1. Compute Services

Compute services provide the processing power and resources needed to run applications in the cloud. This includes virtual machines, containers, and serverless computing. Compute services are essential for digital transformation, allowing organizations to scale their applications and infrastructure to meet changing demands.

According to a report, the global cloud computing market size is expected to grow from USD 371.4 billion in 2020 to USD 832.1 billion by 2025, at a CAGR of 17.5% during the forecast period (2020-25). The growth of the market is driven by factors such as the increasing adoption of multi-cloud strategies and the growing demand for scalable and cost-effective computing.

(Source: MarketsandMarkets)

4.2. Storage Services

Storage services provide the capacity and durability needed to store and manage data in the cloud. This includes object storage, block storage, and file storage. Solutions such as cloud storage services are essential for digital transformation, as they allow organizations to store and manage large amounts of data and make it easily accessible to users.

According to a report, the global data sphere is expected to grow from 33 zettabytes (ZB) in 2018 to 175 ZB by 2025, at a CAGR of 61%. The growth of the data sphere is driven by factors such as the increasing use of digital technologies and the growing amount of data generated by connected devices.

(Source: IDC)

4.3. Networking Services

Networking services provide the connectivity and performance needed to access and use cloud resources. This includes virtual networks, load balancers, and content delivery networks. Networking services are essential for digital transformation, allowing organizations to connect their applications and infrastructure across different regions and providers.

According to a research report, the global multi-cloud networking market will grow from USD 2.7 billion in 2022 to USD 7.6 billion by 2027 at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 22.5% during the forecast period (2022-27).

(Source: MarketsandMarkets)

4.4. Security Services

Cloud security services provide the protection and compliance needed to secure cloud resources and data. This includes identity and access management (IAM), encryption, and threat detection and response. Security services are essential for digital transformation, as they allow organizations to secure their applications and data from cyber threats and comply with regulatory requirements.

The Global Cloud Access Security Broker Market size is expected to reach $18 billion by 2028, rising at a market growth of 17.8% CAGR during the forecast period (2022-28).

(Source: ReportLinker )

5. Use Cases of IaaS in Digital Transformation


5.1. Cloud Migration

Cloud Migration: One of the primary use cases for IaaS is cloud migration, where organizations move their existing applications and infrastructure to the cloud platform. This can help organizations reduce their IT costs, improve scalability, and increase flexibility. IaaS providers offer tools and cloud services to make the migration process easier and more efficient.

For example,

Accenture helped global manufacturing companies migrate its IT infrastructure to the Microsoft Azure IaaS platform. One of the migrations involved moving more than 1,200 virtual machines and 150 TB of data to the cloud. As a result, the company was able to reduce its IT infrastructure costs by 40% and improve scalability and flexibility.

(Source: Accenture)

5.2. DevOps and Continuous Integration/Continuous Deployment (CI/CD)

IaaS provides the infrastructure needed to support DevOps and CI/CD processes, allowing organizations to deliver software faster and more reliably. IaaS providers offer tools and services to automate deployment, testing, and monitoring, as well as to manage infrastructure as code.

For example,

GE Digital used the Amazon Web Services (AWS) IaaS platform to implement DevOps and CI/CD processes for its Predix Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) platform. As a result, GE Digital reduced its mean acknowledgment time from one day to less than one hour and its mean remediation time from three days to 80 minutes. It moved from zero to a 100 percent real-time visibility.

(Source: Amazon)

5.3. Big Data Analytics

IaaS provides the processing power and storage needed to support big data analytics, allowing organizations to extract insights from large amounts of data. IaaS providers offer tools and services to manage and process data, as well as to enable real-time analytics and machine learning.

For example,

Netflix uses the AWS IaaS platform to support its big data analytics needs. Netflix processes over one billion events daily using AWS services such as Amazon Kinesis, Amazon S3, and Amazon EMR. As a result, Netflix is able to rapidly scale, operate securely, and meet capacity needs worldwide thanks to AWS's provision of computation, storage, and infrastructure.

(Source: Amazon)

5.4. The Internet of Things

IaaS provides the infrastructure needed to support IoT devices and applications, allowing organizations to collect and analyze data from connected devices. IaaS providers offer tools and cloud services to manage and secure IoT devices, as well as enable real-time data processing and analysis.

For example,

Siemens uses the Microsoft Azure IaaS platform to support its IoT initiatives. Siemens uses Azure services such as Azure IoT Hub, Azure Stream Analytics, and Azure Cosmos DB to collect and process data from over one million IoT devices. This allows Siemens to optimize its industrial processes and improve efficiency and productivity.

(Source: Siemens)

6. Leading Providers of IaaS


6.1.Deft

Deft is a trusted provider of managed IT services for SMBs and the Fortune 500. Deft's cloud services offer flexible, scalable, and cost-effective solutions for organizations looking to move their IT infrastructure to the cloud. Customers can choose from a range of cloud options, including public, private, and hybrid clouds, all hosted in Deft's secure data centers worldwide. Deft's cloud experts can also help customers design and implement custom solutions that meet their business requirements.


6.2.
Virtuozzo

Virtuozzo is a leading provider of hyperconverged cloud software and services for cloud service providers (CSPs). Virtuozzo makes cloud computing easy, accessible, and affordable for all. The company's offerings include infrastructure-as-a-service (IaaS) with its production-ready OpenStack cloud platform, a key component of its IaaS offerings. The platform is designed to reduce costs and improve margins for CSPs by providing them with a highly efficient and scalable cloud infrastructure.


6.3.
DigitalOcean

DigitalOcean is a cloud computing provider offering a range of solutions to simplify infrastructure management for developers and businesses. One of the key benefits of working with DigitalOcean is its simplicity. The company's solutions are designed to be easy to use and accessible to developers of all skill levels, with an intuitive user interface and straightforward pricing plans. This allows businesses to focus on building innovative applications rather than spending time managing their infrastructure.


6.4.
Vultr

Vultr is a leading provider of cloud computing solutions designed to simplify infrastructure deployment for developers and businesses. The company's infrastructure is built on the latest technology, with state-of-the-art data centers and advanced networking capabilities. Vultr's cloud platform is designed to provide frictionless provisioning of public cloud, storage, and single-tenant bare metal services. This allows businesses to quickly and easily deploy infrastructure wherever needed, with fast network speeds and low latency.


6.5.
Linode

Linode is a leading cloud computing solution provider that makes it easy, accessible, and affordable for individuals and businesses of all sizes to innovate and grow. Linode's cloud infrastructure is open-source, making it highly flexible and adaptable. They are designed to be simple and easy to use. The company offers various services, including virtual private servers (VPS), object storage, load balancing, managed Kubernetes, and more. In addition, these solutions are fully scalable and can be customized to meet each customer's specific needs.


7. Conclusion

IaaS services are expected to continue to play a critical role in driving the digital transformation of businesses. IaaS services are expected to see significant growth in the fields of artificial intelligence and machine learning. With the rise of big data and the increasing importance of data-driven decision-making, IaaS providers are expected to be critical in supporting these initiatives, providing the scalable computing power required to support advanced analytics and machine learning workloads. IaaS services are also expected to support the increasing demand for edge computing. With the proliferation of IoT devices and the rise of real-time applications, IaaS providers are expected to provide the necessary infrastructure and tools to support these initiatives, enabling organizations to process data and perform analysis. As a result, many organizations have turned to IaaS to support their digital transformation efforts, leveraging cloud computing services to implement new technologies and services that enable them to serve customers better, improve operational efficiency, and drive revenue growth. The future of IaaS services looks promising and will continue to be a critical enabler of digital transformation for businesses of all sizes and industries.

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ICANN ANNOUNCES GRANT PROGRAM TO SPUR INNOVATION

PR Newswire | January 16, 2024

The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN), the nonprofit organization that coordinates the Domain Name System (DNS), announced today the ICANN Grant Program, which will make millions of dollars in funding available to develop projects that support the growth of a single, open and globally interoperable Internet. ICANN is opening an application cycle for the first $10 million in grants in March 2024. Internet connectivity continues to increase worldwide, particularly in developing countries. According to the International Telecommunication Union (ITU), an estimated 5.3 billion of the world's population use the Internet as of 2022, a growth rate of 6.1% over 2021. The Grant Program will support this next phase of global Internet growth by fostering an inclusive and transparent approach to developing stable, secure Internet infrastructure solutions that support the Internet's unique identifier systems. "With the rapid evolution of emerging technologies, businesses and security models, it is critical that the Internet's unique identifier systems continue to evolve," said Sally Costerton, Interim President and CEO, ICANN. "The ICANN Grant Program offers a new avenue to further those efforts by investing in projects that are committed to and support ICANN's vision of a single, open and globally interoperable Internet that fosters inclusion amongst a broad, global community of users." ICANN expects to begin accepting grant applications on 25 March 2024. The application window will remain open until 24 May 2024. A complete list of eligibility criteria can be found at: https://icann.org/grant-program. Once the application window closes, all applications are subject to admissibility and eligibility checks. An Independent Application Assessment Panel will review admissible and eligible applications and the tentative timeline to announce the grantees of the first cycle is in January of 2025. Potential applicants will have several opportunities to learn more about the Call for Proposals and ask ICANN Grant Program staff members questions through question-and-answer webinar sessions in the coming months. For more information on the program, including eligibility and submission requirements, the ICANN Grant Program Applicant Guide is available at https://icann.org/grant-program. About ICANN ICANN's mission is to help ensure a stable, secured and unified global Internet. To reach another person on the Internet, you need to type an address – a name or a number – into your computer or other device. That address must be unique so computers know where to find each other. ICANN helps coordinate and support these unique identifiers across the world.

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Application Infrastructure

Legrand Acquires Data Center, Branch, and Edge Management Infrastructure Market Leader ZPE Systems, Inc.

Legrand | January 15, 2024

Legrand, a global specialist in electrical and digital building infrastructures, including data center solutions, has announced its acquisition is complete of ZPE Systems, Inc., a Fremont, California-based company that offers critical solutions and services to deliver resilience and security for customers' business critical infrastructure. This includes serial console servers, sensors, and services routers that enable remote access and management of network IT equipment from data centers to the edge. The acquisition brings together ZPE's secure and open management infrastructure and services delivery platform for data center, branch, and edge environments to Legrand's comprehensive data center solutions of overhead busway, custom cabinets, intelligent PDUs, KVM switches, and advanced fiber solutions. ZPE Systems will become a business unit of Legrand's Data, Power, and Control (DPC) Division. Arnaldo Zimmermann will continue to serve as Vice President and General Manager of ZPE Systems, reporting to Brian DiBella, President of Legrand's DPC Division. "ZPE Systems leads the fast growing and profitable data center and edge management infrastructure market. This acquisition allows Legrand to enter a promising new segment whose strong growth is expected to accelerate further with the development of artificial intelligence and associated needs," said John Selldorff, President and CEO, Legrand, North and Central America. "Edge computing, AI and operational technology will require more complex data centers and edge infrastructure with intelligent IT needs to be built in disparate remote geographies. This makes remote management and operation a critical requirement. ZPE Systems is well positioned to address this need through high performance automation infrastructure solutions, which are complementary to our current data center offerings." "By joining forces with Legrand, ZPE Systems is advancing our leadership position in management infrastructure and propelling our technology and solutions to further support existing and new market opportunities," said Zimmermann. About Legrand and Legrand, North and Central America Legrand is the global specialist in electrical and digital building infrastructures. Its comprehensive offering of solutions for commercial, industrial, and residential markets makes it a benchmark for customers worldwide. The Group harnesses technological and societal trends with lasting impacts on buildings with the purpose of improving lives by transforming the spaces where people live, work, and meet with electrical, digital infrastructures and connected solutions that are simple, innovative, and sustainable. Drawing on an approach that involves all teams and stakeholders, Legrand is pursuing its strategy of profitable and responsible growth driven by acquisitions and innovation, with a steady flow of new offerings—including products with enhanced value in use (faster expanding segments: data centers, connected offerings and energy efficiency programs). Legrand reported sales of €8.0 billion in 2022. The company is listed on Euronext Paris and is notably a component stock of the CAC 40 and CAC 40 ESG indexes.

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