These Days it’s Not Just the Cloud, it’s Multi-Cloud or Bust

Mick Fennell
Mick Fennell – Business Line Director, Payments

As regulators all over the world become more open to the idea of banks running mission critical payments processing in the public cloud and through SaaS providers, the resilience of such infrastructures has become ever more important, especially to those same regulators who must certify the operational environments as fit-for-purpose.

However, far from providing a perfect, bullet-proof history of seamless uptime, the major providers of the public cloud environments have, every now and again, suffered outages. Just a brief check online of major providers’ cloud status history shows outages across various regions in the past month alone.

This simple fact has generated concerns among the regulators of cloud concentration, i.e. the risk of running mission critical systems on just a single cloud provider. Consequently, the industry is seeing a major shift towards the need for the more resilient, and thus certifiable, approach of multi-cloud. Yes, that’s right, as banks choose to move mission critical payments processing to SaaS providers, one of the key capabilities that is now required is the ability to run the service across multiple, different cloud providers’ environments at the same time.

This is not an easy ask for most payment SaaS service providers. It requires a specific architecture and technology stack that manages the distribution of data across active-active environments spread across different cloud services. It requires the testing and certification across more than one public cloud provider, and in most cases, that actually means 3 providers to create the relevant redundancy required.  Unfortunately, the reality is that most payment SaaS providers choose to partner with one cloud service provider and end up with technical, commercial and operational lock-in to them.

At Temenos SaaS, we have consciously invested in an architecture and technology stack, as well as a certification and testing program to deliver the higher level of bullet-proof resilience. This strategy includes our investment in the advanced NuoDB distributed relational database that can support the mission critical active-active deployment scenarios across multiple cloud providers, which is demanded by the industry.

This flexibility in our deployment service has enabled us to differentiate our SaaS offering and gain the highest level of resilience certification required by the most advanced regulators in the market.

These technology choices have also delivered a number of cost benefits for Temenos Payments users when deployed on the NuoDB database:

  • Performance improvements over legacy database infrastructure – means less hardware to achieve the same performance
  • Native database resilience – no additional costly database options for scale out and multi- data center active-active deployments
  • Database licensing model – lower license costs for peak processing
  • Eliminate pre-provisioning to annual peak capacity with NuoDB elastic scaling – scale-out to meet peak processing demands and scale-in when complete

There are also a range of technical benefits when running Temenos Payments on NuoDB:

  • Continuous Availability – all NuoDB nodes run active-active with no single point of failure and no system downtime
  • Container & Cloud Native – NuoDB was designed to run in fully distributed modern computing environments, such as cloud and containers
  • Public, Private, and Hybrid Cloud – NuoDB runs in any cloud or private data center, or any combination, including deployments across multiple clouds
  • Linear Scalability – NuoDB capacity can be scaled online with no system downtime by scaling out Transaction Engines (TEs) in line with Temenos Payments application servers
  • Elastic Scalability – NuoDB can scale-out to dozens of burst-processing nodes in minutes, then scale-in to control costs of computing infrastructure resources

For any Financial Institution designing an IT roadmap for moving to microservices and container-based architectures, it is essential that they select a cloud-native distributed SQL database. Couple these capabilities with the ability to distribute data across active-active nodes in a multi-cloud environment, and one starts to see the reason for Temenos’ investment in this technology and why it is central to the provision of our differentiated Payment SaaS business.

These days, it’s not just a cloud environment that one has to certify to keep the regulator happy, it’s multi-cloud or bust!

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Mick Fennell
Mick Fennell – Business Line Director, Payments