What would your organization do if your cloud provider were to go out of business? What happens if your cloud provider suddenly stops offering critical services that your organization requires for its business to function properly? Businesses need to start asking these important questions and develop plans to address these scenarios.

The cloud is a new market that continues to grow, and there are more small players offering their services. According to Gartner, Cloud System Infrastructure Services (IaaS) are expected to grow from $45.8 billion in revenue in 2018 to $72.4 billion in 2020. As the market matures, it’s only natural that some of these organizations will disappear or stop offering certain services. In 2013, Nirvanix stopped offering it cloud services and gave customers only two weeks’ notice to move their data off of their platform.

This problem is not as severe in a conventional IT model. With a traditional data center, you actually own whatever hardware you purchase, so even if the manufacturer goes out of business, you still have the equipment and can keep using it but may have issues with support. You still have an opportunity to plan your migration to a new vendor’s servers or infrastructure.

On the cloud, such assurances typically do not exist. If the organization that provides you with cloud servers or infrastructure devices goes out of business, your servers are gone. Your data could also be lost. For example, if your systems are deeply integrated with your cloud storage provider and that provider shuts down, it would likely be very challenging to migrate your data, even if the provider gave you a grace period.