Banks, credit unions, processors and other organizations that provide payment services are moving aggressively toward the cloud. While every organization will have its own cloud strategy and unique business drivers, there are many overarching benefits that every financial services company can use to its advantage:
- Enhanced access and security for remote staff.
- Flexible and scalable deployment options.
- Improved operational resilience.
- Simplified integration and synchronization between internal systems.
- Lower costs.
However, reaping these benefits is not something that will happen overnight or as a “happy accident”. Because of the flexibility it offers, the cloud can actually be a highly complex ecosystem to work in. Deploying specialized appliances like ATMs into this environment requires thorough planning on multiple fronts including networking, security, and operating system management.
It is therefore critically important to work with partners who can provide the advice and guidance required for a successful implementation. Leveraging staff knowledge of virtualization techniques and ATM operating system knowledge, as well as years of experience successfully deploying virtualized ATMs into on-premise hypervisors, Paragon has developed a new approach that allows us to deploy those same proven capabilities into the cloud.
Some of the lessons learned from working closely with clients and their cloud providers include:
- Ensuring the cloud-based VMs that support the ATM environment are properly sized requires some detailed initial analysis, as well as ongoing monitoring and maintenance. While it is relatively easy to modify the capacity and characteristics of these VMs at any time, it may not be obvious that you have a problem with these particular components until you actually experience performance issues or have spent a significant amount of time troubleshooting other areas.
- Once routed through multiple destinations and internal subsystems, your on-site networking infrastructure can cause downstream problems that may not appear to be specific to the cloud environment but can have a negative impact on those resources.
- The cloud can experience network outages the same as any other infrastructure. In order to mitigate the risk of service level outages, it is appropriate to use dynamic entry points that can handle rerouted traffic from disparate internal systems.
- Because of the specialized nature of ATM deployments, there is still no end-to-end document or “playbook” that will walk you through the implementation process. It is therefore important to use caution when working with information and instruction supplied by the cloud providers. It is likely that there will be gaps in these materials, as well as limitations in the advice and guidance provided by technical support staff.
In order to ensure success with your cloud deployment, it is imperative to partner with a well-experienced team that has worked through multiple implementations. At Paragon, we understand how to work with your network, security, and other internal IT teams to facilitate the migration and help your organization realize the full benefits that the cloud can deliver.
Read more about migrating your ATM assets to the cloud in part one of this series.