Infrastructure as a service

by: Ryan Rackley and Emily Waite

Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) models inside traditional information technology departments are taking shape in the financial services industry. Although IaaS is not the norm in the industry, and it won’t be a fit for all institutions, credit unions that choose to deploy this emerging technology can experience a positive impact.

Loosely defined, IaaS is a form of cloud computing [alongside Platform as a Service (PaaS) and Software as a Service (SaaS)] that provides virtualized computing resources for whatever systems the credit union chooses (more on this idea later).

In an IaaS model, a third-party provider hosts hardware, software, servers, storage and other infrastructure components on behalf of its clients. IaaS providers also host users’ applications and handle such tasks as system maintenance, backup and resiliency planning.

IaaS is not the traditional service-bureau-application-centric model provided by industry vendors for core, online banking and mobile solutions. Instead, under this model much of the maintenance for underlying servers, desktops, and disaster recovery is outsourced to a vendor rather than maintained by in-house IT staff.

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