Information security professionals must seize the opportunity of the inevitable move to cloud computing to raise data security to new levels, according to Art Coviello, president of RSA, the security division of EMC.
"The industry must play a role to ensure security is built in so that organisations from the smallest to the largest can use cloud computing, confident that their data is secure," he told the opening keynote at RSA Conference 2010 in San Francisco.
Cloud computing is inevitable as businesses hit hard by the world economic downturn increasingly demand better and faster returns on investment, he said.
As organisations move from virtualisation of non-critical functions, to critical functions, to internal cloud and then finally to integrating public and private clouds, they will demand the ability to dictate security policies and proof of compliance from service providers, he said.
"We believe this level of assurance is possible," said Coviello, alluding to a newly unveiled hardware-based proof of concept for a trusted cloud infrastructure developed by RSA in partnership with Intel, VMware and the recently acquired Archer Technologies.
"Cloud computing will complete the transformation of IT infrastructures unleashed by the internet," said Coviello.
It is up to information security professionals to collaborate to tackle the challenge of ensuring security is embedded in cloud infrastructure through enforceable policies and procedures, he said.
"Security professionals must lead, embrace the challenge and seize the opportunity," said Coviello.