Microsoft issues apology following widespread Azure service disruption

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Windows Azure service disruption

With the rise in popularity of cloud services, a series of difficult questions have been asked of users, both those in the consumer world and the enterprise marketplace. What happens to privacy when allowing others total control over often sensitive data? Moreover, what then happens to the security of that data if we must place complete trust in the unfailing competence of others?

As technology in the workplace has become ever more ubiquitous, and companies such as Dropbox, Google, Amazon and Microsoft have been aggressively pushing their cloud services to businesses across the world, these questions have become even more prudent, as Microsoft recently found following Tuesday’s widespread Azure service disruption.

The company have since issued an official apology via the Azure blog, with Jason Zander, CVP, stating:

Yesterday evening Pacific Standard Time, Azure storage services experienced a service interruption across the United States, Europe and parts of Asia, which impacted multiple cloud services in these regions.  I want to first sincerely apologize for the disruption this has caused.  We know our customers put their trust in us and we take that very seriously. 

Azure Services

The disruption was allegedly caused by a bug discovered during a routine performance upgrade to servers, which then began to cause significant difficulties. Following a restart, service has been restored to the majority of those affected by the problem, however there are a few who still report significant difficulties and are still waiting for an official fix. 

Microsoft have assured customers that they are working to help those still affected and are taking a number of precautions to ensure another similar disruption shall never take place again. The question remains, with users paying a premium for the convenience and security that the cloud offers, what assurance of security and stability do they have beyond the illusion cast by the responsible firm?