ISACA study.

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Research conducted across Europe, the Middle East and Africa (EMEA) by ISACA, a non-profit association of 86,000 global information technology professionals, has found that a quarter of enterprises that already use cloud computing believe that the risks outweigh the benefits (a fifth in the UK), yet still carry on regardless. This perhaps recognises the relative immaturity of cloud computing usage and the uncertainty of the balance between risk and reward. Of the more than 1,500 professionals sampled across more than 50 EMEA countries, 33% already use cloud computing (40% in the UK); According to ISACA's survey, the IT Risk/Reward Barometer, EMEA, with regard to future use of cloud computing:

* 9.4% of respondents (8.9% in the UK) plan to use cloud computing for mission-critical IT services;

* 8.8 % (9.6% UK) wilt only use the cloud for low-risk, non-mission-critical IT services:

* 35.6% (31.8% UK) do not plan to use the cloud for any IT services;

* 17.9% (23.6%) have not formalised their plans;

* 28.2% (26.1%) were not aware of any plans for cloud computing.

The survey found that nearly two thirds (63%) of organisations claimed they are willing to take IT-related business risks in anticipation of a return for the business (64.3% UK) and 12.1% would take large risks to maximise business return. When asked about integrating IT risk management with the organisation's overall approach to risk management:

* 4.8% admitted they do so without a formal approach to business risk management (3.2% UK);

* 22.2% said they did not effectively integrate IT risk management with their overall approach to risk management (22% UK);

* 24% said they are very effective at managing risk (20% UK);

* 48.7% reported being somewhat effective (54% UK);

ISACA acknowledges that to get ahead in business, there must be an element of risk, but warns it mustn't be at any price. Paul Williams, ISACA adviser to Protiviti advised, "Every day we take calculated risks. Organisations need an integrated...

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