If companies don’t upgrade essential infrastructure, they run the risk of not only rendering themselves obsolete, but damaging customers in the process, warns Martin James, Vice President EMEA at Aerospike Inc., a real-time database leader.
Relying on out-of-date operating systems, databases and applications is dangerous and significantly increases the risk of a security breach through an outage or cyberattack, he says, referring to figures released earlier this month. These show more than 4.5 billion records have been compromised so far this year due to publicly disclosed security incidents.
“Businesses today need to expose their applications to broader and more widely distributed audiences. This requires enhanced levels of security, including biometrics, which are not supported by legacy infrastructure.” Martin James said.
The argument from companies that they need to achieve the best possible ROI on their traditional infrastructure investments is no longer relevant, according to James. He points out that suppliers charge a premium to support aging software – if they agree to support it at all – and that processes are markedly slow which impacts services and efficiency. He also says that, unlike modern technology, legacy systems are not built on microservices which means organisations are hampered if they want to spin up new applications or add new modules without undergoing a complete system redesign.
“But it’s not just about the technology, because people matter too,” he adds. “It’s already difficult to attract and retain high-level, skilled IT professionals and they certainly don’t want to work on old systems. They want to learn new skills and be part of the digital transformation which also supports sustainability initiatives.”
Martin James cites TomTom, the mapping and location technology company, which last year migrated to an Aerospike real-time database. Since its migration, not only has TomTom been able to reduce its server footprint from 48 to 3, cutting its CO2 footprint by 87.9%, it has also experienced no outages or security risks and is now 100% stable.
“For a long time, business leaders have been citing concerns about disruption and perceived high costs as a reason for sticking with their legacy infrastructure,” concludes James. “The fact is that moving to digital technology will not only be economically and environmentally efficient, but it will also lay the groundwork for them to take advantage of innovations such as generative AI. If they fail to do this, organisations will be left behind and lose customers to more secure, agile and innovative competitors.”