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It’s easy to forget that there are more options for cloud storage than AWS, GCP and Azure. The top three cloud providers dominate the market, with AWS’ 33% and Azure’s 21% adding up to more than half of the Q4 2021 global market share. However, history has proven that even the biggest brands need to keep an eye open for innovative competition.

Among the cluster of companies aiming their slingshots at the Goliath clouds is self-proclaimed “hot” cloud storage provider Wasabi Inc. During the recent “Secure Storage Hot Takes” event, cloud storage experts from Wasabi and The Hotchkiss School joined theCUBE’s industry analyst Dave Vellante to discuss modern storage solutions and give theCUBE’s community insights into why Wasabi’s hot storage solution has the hyperscalers looking over their shoulders.

In case you missed the “Secure Storage Hot Takes” event, here are theCUBE’s top three takeaways from the event:

1) The Hotchkiss School partners with Wasabi for more than just affordable cloud storage.

The pressure is on every organization to adopt cloud. But choosing a cloud provider can be a fraught process of balancing security, speed and cost. And the truth is, not every organization can allocate budget for the high storage fees the big cloud providers charge.

The Hotchkiss School, a private grade 9 through 12 institute in Connecticut, fell into this category. And, like many others, the school needed more than just affordable cloud storage. It also needed storage that met data regulation and compliance statutes to protect student, staff and donor privacy, as well as host a small content delivery program. And with the rise in attacks on small, public sector organizations, it needed to be sure it was protected against ransomware.

It was a difficult task to fill on the school’s information technology department’s limited budget, and Director of IT Dervices Kevin Warenda (pictured), wanted to make sure the school didn’t lock in a contract with a cloud provider and then discover it came with high bills from hard-to-anticipate add-on fees. When he saw promotional material from Wasabi, he was impressed by the company’s low barrier to entry.

“I said, ‘We can try this out in a very low-stakes way to see how this works for us,’” he told theCUBE during the “Secure Storage Hot Takes” event.

Like most Wasabi customers, Warenda didn’t need the full 30 days of the free one-terabyte trial to know that hot cloud storage was a great option for The Hotchkiss School. Today, his department manages a secure and cost-effective hyperconverged infrastructure built on hot cloud storage and technology from Wasabi alliance partners Nutanix Inc. and HYCU Inc.

Watch Kevin Warenda discuss how Wasabi protects The Hotchkiss School against ransomware:

2) Wasabi shares its secret to next-generation storage architecture.

Wasabi co-founders David Friend and Jeff Flowers are serial entrepreneurs with a background in cloud storage solutions. Predicting the coming onslaught of data would make existing cloud storage architectures inefficient and slow, Flowers built a highly parallelized scalable architecture that can cope with huge amounts of data. This architecture, which forms the basis of Wasabi’s hot cloud storage, enables fast, cheap and secure object storage that removes the need for customers to choose between cheap and slow storage or expensive accessible performance. It is, according to Friend, “a whole new generation of object storage.”

Wasabi’s architecture was designed to be completely interoperable with AWS S3 storage standards and supports many AWS tools and services. This means customers already using S3 application programming interface-based applications can migrate their data to Wasabi with a simple redirect command. But don’t make the mistake of thinking the company is built on top of AWS.

“We are our own cloud storage service. We don’t run on top of anybody else. It’s our systems, it’s our software deployed globally, and we interoperate because we adhere to the S3 standard,” Drew Schlussel, senior director of product marketing for Wasabi, told theCUBE.

The vision Friend and Flowers built Wasabi to serve is that of a world  — five to 10 years in the future –where the majority of the world’s data lives in the cloud and data storage is considered a commodity much like electricity or bandwidth are today.

“[Cloud storage] will comply with the local regulations. It’ll be fast. It’ll be local. And there will be no strategic advantage that I can think of for somebody to stand up and run their own storage,” Friend stated.

Watch theCUBE’s complete video interview with David Friend below:

3) No one can touch data when it’s under secure Object Lock (not even Wasabi’s engineers).

Paying a ransomware demand can wipe out years of cheap cloud storage savings in seconds. So, many companies choose to go with a cloud provider known for security rather than risking losing data to a cyber thief. Wasabi’s interoperability with AWS S3 storage means that all the security S3 has, Wasabi has as well. This includes 11 nines durability – a figure so close to 100% that the difference is negligible.

The term “secure object lock” matches AWS’ S3 terminology. Other vendors refer to the concept as immutability – as in unable to be altered.

“Immutability is the equivalent of the old WORM [write once read many] tapes but applied to cloud storage. It has become core to the backup strategies and disaster recovery strategies for most companies,” Friend explained.

With Wasabi S3 Object Lock, a client selects a timeframe for which they want to make objects (files) immutable. This could be a week, or it could be years. For that period, “that object is immutable, untouchable [and] cannot be altered in any way, shape or form. It is truly carved in stone,” Schlussel stated.

This gives an impressive guarantee of security, as even if cybercriminals compromise a company’s account and steal credentials, they still cannot gain access to locked data. Plus, Wasabi immutability is a feature accessed via API request and included in Wasabi’s flat monthly fee.

“Other storage providers charge you for every API call. Every Get, every Put, every List,” Schlussel said. “It’s your data, it’s your storage … so why shouldn’t you have unfettered access?”

Watch theCUBE’s complete video itnerview with Drew Schlussel below:

Watch the complete “Secure Storage Hot Takes” event video below:

(* Disclosure: TheCUBE is a paid media partner for the “Secure Storage Hot Takes” event. Neither Wasabi Technologies Inc., the sponsor of theCUBE’s event coverage, nor other sponsors have editorial control over content on theCUBE or SiliconANGLE.)

Image: Kevin Warenda

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