Cloud computing is no new subject to us, but what does cloud computing for rural banking projects mean? It simply means using the cloud services [cloud computing] in any form [PaaS, SaaS, and IaaS] to establish a portal to facilitate financial activities, even to the world’s remotest corners.
People from rural areas are deprived of banking facilities due to the lack of financial establishments like banks, mortgage companies, brokerage firms, etc.
Cloud computing helps people from those areas to conduct financial activities using mobile devices via the internet at any time and place.
Before jumping into the benefits and challenges of cloud computing for rural banking projects, let us quickly review the cloud computing and rural banking projects and their correlation.
What is cloud computing?
Cloud computing, in general, is anything and everything involving services hosted on the internet for the users to access and enjoy. Usually, these services are subscription-based or sometimes free.
Users can log into the hosted environment using the provided credentials and access the features available based on the subscription. A stable internet connection is mandatory.
You can use any digital device to operate on the front end and send a request to the host, which links you to the databases and back end, where you can perform the designated actions and retrieve outputs back to your device.
Cloud computing grants you freedom and flexibility because you do not have to be seated at a point in time and space. It doesn’t matter where you are and what devices you are using. It is a revolution toward legacy and traditional work culture.
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What is rural banking project?
The rural banking project refers to a process of providing customized financial services to individuals living in the rural regions, which are far from the towns and cities.
A town or city has many financial institutions like central banks, retail and commercial banks, credit unions, brokerage firms, insurance companies, mortgage companies, corporative, savings, and loan associations.
These institutions are not established in the rural areas as they cannot perform well to meet their organizational goals. There are many geological and infrastructural hindrances to operating those establishments in the rural regions.
Despite these obstacles, providing people in the rural areas with all the financial services [banking services] through different means and mediums fall under the rural banking project.
So how is it possible to successfully carry out the rural banking project? The answer is with the use of cloud computing. Cloud computing eliminates most physical infrastructures needed to establish a financial institution, which means most operational tasks are covered.
It leaves financial institutions with the creation and deployment of cloud services to facilitate all the banking services regardless of the geological and infrastructural attributes of the rural area.
Let us dive into the details to find out more on the topic.
How to deploy cloud computing for rural banking projects?
As mentioned earlier, cloud computing services are subscription-based, where you have the freedom of choosing any of three services IaaS [Infrastructure as a Service], PaaS [Platform as a Service], and SaaS [Software as a Service]. The next thing is whether you choose to host the service on a private or a public cloud.
Rural banking projects require a smooth, efficient, and secure environment, and the private cloud will suit better. Whether you want a platform to build your infrastructure on the cloud [PaaS], subscribe to an already made software[SaaS], or rent an infrastructure [Iaas] to develop your software yourself, you have the freedom.
As soon as you deploy your service on the cloud, you are halfway there. The next thing you need to work on is teaching the users how to access and operate the applications from their devices. Creating simple and elegant user interfaces will aid the cause.
It would be best if you guided users in detail to get the best out of the service. You can create demos, assist videos and infographics, and even establish customer support with video-audio assistance.
What are the benefits of cloud computing for rural banking projects?
There are several benefits of cloud computing for rural banking projects. Some of the important ones are as follows:
1. Quick Deployment
Your developer teams can swiftly test new ideas, implement better strategies to get the best possible result and design the application architecture as they are not abided by hardware limitations.
Deploying a ready-made banking software is faster and can be done with a few clicks.
Once you have figured out the structure and developed your application for the rural banking project, it is a matter of seconds to get going.
Scalability is one of the best features of cloud computing that you can use to scale the service either way to meet your rural banking project needs.
This feature allows you to use the resources only as much as you need, and you do not have to worry about the wastage of resources and your investment.
The best thing is that vendors/service providers allow you to add and deduct the subscriptions at any time and space without worrying about up-front payments.
3. Automatic updates and integrations
Developers can test new software versions and easily integrate them into the cloud environment to facilitate users with innovations and better features.
If you have SaaS, you have nothing to worry about, as the vendors will handle the updates and maintenance on a timely basis to meet the market [user] demands. The con of this service is that you cannot modify the features according to your designs and needs.
4. Cost Reduction
You do not have to establish, maintain, and upgrade on-premise infrastructures, which cuts the investment for good. You can start up your rural banking project with a minimal investment.
The vendor [service provider] handles them all; you need to pay subscription fees on time for uninterrupted and efficient workflow.
5. Disaster Proof
The cloud servers have disaster-proof solutions for your data protection and storage. They grant you unlimited data storage, backed up in various data centers worldwide. The vendors can easily backup and restore your information if anything goes wrong at a certain time and space.
No natural disasters or human threats can wipe your data off the grid as the cloud service providers have the latest and high-tech securities at their disposal. You do not have to worry about your data and information loss.
6. Competitive Edge
You will edge your competitors with cloud computing implementation. Every business, including banking sectors and financial institutions, will migrate to the cloud in the future.
If you establish your rural banking project on the cloud, you will stay ahead of time and your competitors.
7. Complete Control
Cloud computing services grant you optimal control over your data and information. You can decide which data and information to share with which person. You can easily give and restrict permission to access, modify, and delete even the smallest data unit.
This feature aids in collaboration on the same data and information as many users can share and simultaneously modify data from everywhere.
8. Data Security
It is one of the major concerns of businesses of all sizes. Cyberattacks can hamper any targeted company’s data that destroy a company’s brand positioning, revenue, and customer loyalty.
Cloud offers granular permission and access management features that designate roles and restricts access to sensitive data only to specific personnel. It eliminates malicious attackers from the equation.
Cloud security evolves with time and lives up to the levels that attackers cannot challenge.
9. Data Loss Prevention
If you are the one that still uses on-premise storage to store your data, then you should be aware that anything can go wrong at any point. The data stored locally will be unretainable if you haven’t created backups.
To eliminate this issue, you should move on to the cloud storage to store all your data, as those data can be easily retrieved from any device using your login credentials.
No natural disasters or cyber crimes can affect your data.
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What are the challenges of cloud computing for rural banking projects?
Some challenges of cloud computing for rural banking projects are security issues, lack of expertise, compliance, and migration. Let us discuss them briefly and learn how to overcome them in the following sections.
1. Security Issues
Security issues have been the main challenge of cloud computing since the early days. As you do not know where your data is being stored or processed, it is obvious to be a little concerned, and it can lead to complications when creating and maintaining the cloud.
There are previous records of data breaches, broken authentications, compromised credentials, and hacked APIs and interfaces. These security issues from the past make it difficult to trust cloud computing fully.
To overcome the problem, you should verify the service provider’s history and the database privacy and security laws. You should check if the vendor has proper access control, authentications, and an identity management mechanism.
Implementing a proper BI cloud tool that can withstand the threats and leverage strong security measures is better.
2. Lack of Expertise
Cloud computing is evolving daily with new features and innovations. It has a negative side; users cannot keep up with the tools. Experts need to cope with the changes and learn about them as soon as possible. Small businesses will have a hard time hiring an expert.
Cloud computing addresses this issue by automating those processes that require expert knowledge. Using DevOps tools like Puppets and Chef to monitor patterns and perform automated backups periodically helps optimize the cost.
This problem also arises with the users at the other end of the rural banking project. People in the rural areas might not have the level to cope with the periodical updates and improvements.
It would be best if you launched training from time to time to teach those people, provide them easy access to visual demos and infographics and set up customer support.
Compliance is one of the modern-day problems in cloud computing. Moving data to the cloud should be done under the rules of being compliant with industry laws and regulations.
This process may be lengthy, but you can store your data safely on the cloud with a little patience.
You can overcome this problem by searching for a vendor that provides compliance and checking if everything is in place. The vendors that provide certified compliance are better.
It is the next problem everyone is dealing with these days. It is easy to create an application on the cloud but moving an existing application can become complex.
As stated by the Velostrata survey, 95% of the companies are migrating their applications to the cloud. Over half of them face difficulty in doing so, leading to over budget and deadlines.
You can choose a vendor that does it all for you with efficiency and guarantee to overcome this problem.
Soon, all the banking sectors and financial institutions will be digitalized completely. The financial establishment will host every function of the financial transactions on the cloud as it becomes fast and convenient.
They have to meet the market fluidity and user requirements. Day by day, all the users will want to perform all the financial transactions from their place of comfort.
The establishments that consider the user’s needs in time will edge over others.
People in rural areas will benefit from these innovations, especially through rural banking projects, which are possible only via cloud computing.