Keysight, the test and measurement vendor, has released the results of a survey sponsored by Ixia, on ‘The State of Cloud Monitoring’. The report highlights the security and monitoring challenges faced by enterprise IT staff responsible for managing public and private cloud deployments.

Cloud environment

The survey, conducted by Dimensional Research and polling 338 IT professionals at organisations from a range of sizes and industries globally, revealed that companies have low visibility into their public cloud environments, and the tools and data supplied by cloud providers are insufficient.

Lack of visibility can result in a variety of problems including the inability to track or diagnose application performance issues, inability to monitor and deliver against service-level agreements, and delays in detecting and resolving security vulnerabilities and exploits.

Survey findings

  • 87% of respondents expressed fears that a lack of cloud visibility is obscuring security threats to their organisation
  • 95% of respondents said visibility problems had led them to experience an application or network performance issue
  • 38% cited insufficient visibility as a key factor in application outages, and 31% in network outages

Application performance

Those responsible for hybrid IT environments are concerned about their inability to fully see and react"

This survey makes it clear that those responsible for hybrid IT environments are concerned about their inability to fully see and react to what is happening in their networks, especially as business-critical applications migrate to a virtualised infrastructure,” said Recep Ozdag, general manager and vice president, product management in Keysight’s Ixia Solutions Group.

This lack of visibility can result in poor application performance, customer data loss, and undetected security threats, all of which can have serious consequences to an organisations’ overall business success.”

Public and hybrid cloud monitoring

The survey focused on challenges faced when monitoring public and private clouds, as well as on-premises data centers. Data revealed IT professionals indicated that cloud providers are not providing the level of visibility they need:

  • Public cloud environments are difficult to monitor: Less than 20% of IT professionals reported they had complete, timely access to data packets in public clouds. In private clouds, the situation is better, with 55% reporting adequate access. In on-premises data centers, 82% have the visibility they need.
  • Packet-level visibility is critical for monitoring: 86% of respondents stated visibility was important for network and application performance monitoring, and 93% stated it was valuable for security.

Monitoring, performance management, security

Nearly all respondents (99%) identified a direct link between comprehensive network visibility and business value. The top three visibility benefits cited were:

  • Monitoring and ensuring application performance (60%)
  • Enabling threat identification (59%)
  • Identifying security ‘indicators of compromise’ (57%)

The survey also revealed that visibility is critical for monitoring cloud performance, as well as validating application performance prior to cloud deployment. Predicting performance is a key challenge and 87 % of cloud users find it difficult to predict application performance in the cloud.

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