Danny Hook is managing director of Rockolo, part of the Gibtelecom group. Hook has over 20 years’ experience within the IT sector both as an IT engineer and more recently, over the past decade, leading operational teams and managing the data centre business for Gibtelecom.
Danny Hook, managing director of Rockolo, talks about the four key beneﬁts of cloud computing and what they mean for operators and suppliers.
There is no doubt about it; cloud computing is the future for online gambling operators and suppliers. The upsides are aplenty; it is ﬂexible, powerful, cost efficient and, most importantly, provides superior security over other data hosting services and solutions.
Many online gambling operators and suppliers have embraced cloud-based services from global providers for their front-end presence in speciﬁc locations, but few have yet to take this step within the licensed jurisdiction itself. Operators and suppliers have built their own separate silos since their beginnings, often linking with each other through slow or costly connections.
Cloud solutions come on a pay as you grow basis, so you only pay for the resources and internet connectivity you use.
Licensed jurisdiction cloud computing will bring about a sea of change in current operating models, providing a platform that is private and secure, yet closely coupled and integrated when it needs to be.
Businesses will be able to come together in a kind of ‘meet-me’ room, where, if residing on the same cloud infrastructure, all the complex connectivity, storage and processing power is taken care of, enabling ﬁrms to focus on what they do best.
There are many upsides to this model, from higher performance to reduced costs via ﬂexibility, security, and more effective support. As a jurisdiction, Gibraltar has long been a champion of cloud computing, and here at Rockolo we have made it our business to help operators and suppliers gradually migrate their systems to the cloud.
The key beneﬁts of shifting to cloud computing
Cloud solutions allow businesses to save money. Whereas traditional systems require operators and their suppliers to invest in expensive hardware, which needs round the clock maintenance, cloud solutions do not.
What’s more, as businesses expand they require more hardware, which takes further investment and incurs additional maintenance costs. Cloud solutions come on a pay as you grow basis, so you only pay for the resources and internet connectivity you use. If one month you require more, you pay more; if you require less the following month, you pay less.
Further savings come from not having to staff a dedicated maintenance team. Servers must be monitored 24-hours a day, seven days a week to ensure no downtime. Cloud solutions are offered with their own support team, reducing staffing costs for operators and suppliers.
Cloud solutions offer superior security compared to traditional data systems. Information is automatically stored and duplicated, eradicating the risk of data being lost. This means information is protected and safe in the event of a sudden technical outage or failure.
Clouds typically reside in purpose-built datacentres and therefore automatically inherit the physical security aspects that these premises provide. This includes CCTV monitoring of all building access points and racks. In addition, all personnel entering a facility must be authorised, approved and validated.
Power security comes from dual power supplies to the cloud infrastructure, backed by emergency generators that can run day and night should grid supply fail. The clouds themselves are built to a “no single point of failure” design; everything is duplicated to ensure security of service and redundancy, even with failed components.
Data is encrypted at rest, and encryption keys known only to the user are needed to access the service. Internet-facing ﬁrewall technologies are included as standard, enabling operators to build robust defences.
This additional layer of security is especially vital for online gambling operators and suppliers given the implementation of GDPR, with greater scope and more punishment for those mishandling consumer data.
Cloud solutions offer a high degree of ﬂexibility, which makes them perfect for businesses with growing and/or ﬂuctuating resource demands. This is certainly the case for online gambling operators and in particular bookmakers, who often see a surge in usage around major sporting events.
Cloud solutions allow businesses to scale up – and down – immediately by drawing on the service’s remote servers and internet connectivity. Again, this helps operators and suppliers streamline costs when it comes to data collection, storage and management. We’ve complemented the scalable service with scalable internet connectivity, which is a real ﬁrst in Gibraltar. Connectivity is charged on ‘transport consumption’ rather than the traditional ﬁxed bandwidth cost, giving operators a completely new array of options.
Cloud solutions are manned by a dedicated team of customer support agents, who are on hand to help businesses maximise the power of the cloud. This includes monitoring their day-to-day resource usage, as well as ensuring the system ﬁres on all cylinders at all times, with no outages.
Our servers are located in Gibraltar speciﬁcally for the jurisdictional needs of licensed operators, and we monitor them around the clock. They comply fully with all Gibraltar gambling regulatory requirements so operators can make use of them immediately. We react instantly to any anomalies, while also ensuring our technology and platform is fully optimised and delivering the best possible service to our partners and clients.
Article published in EGR Intel EGR Gibraltar Report 2018