Six Things About the Importance of Cloud Security You May Not Know

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Cloud storage has it’s benefits, but it’s also important to remain secure while taking advantage of cloud technology. While most companies offering cloud storage options do make an effort to keep the data stored in the cloud safe, many businesses are still legitimately concerned about moving their data to the cloud. Cloud storage can be a safe way to store large amounts of data, as long as you’re aware of what to look for when it comes to security. Here are six things about the importance of Profitbricks.com cloud security you may not know.

1. Not All Cloud Service Providers Are Equal

While most cloud service providers make an effort to keep data safe, don’t make the assumption that all providers are equal. Some cloud providers are more flexible than others in terms of meeting your specific data needs. Reputation is also an important factor. Ask a provider if they have IT professionals on staff or if they use third-party providers to take care of security and monitoring.

Note: Know if your state has laws requiring providers to disclose any security breaches involving personal information and ask if your desired provider is in compliance.

2. Security Roles Must Be Clearly Defined

Clearly define what your cloud service provider will address and what security issues you will take care of on your end. A Service Level Agreement should be established between you and the service provider to clearly determine responsibilities. An SLA should also define:

• What is the estimated time frame for recovery of any data loss?

• Who is responsible for various maintenance procedures?

• What are the policies and procedures if the network goes down?

• Who monitors the data for security threats?

3. You Should Know Exactly Where Your Data Is Stored

Don’t just accept “in the cloud” for an answer when you ask where your data is going to be stored. Your cloud service provider should be able to tell you exactly where your data is located. You should also ask how your data is separated from other data. It’s not a sign of confidence if you can’t get clear answers to these questions. Clearly determine where your data will be located before signing any contract with a provider.

4. Physical Security Is Just As Important

Pay attention to more than just the security of your data stored “in the cloud.” Ask your cloud service provider what their physical security policies are at the facility where your data is stored. This should include information such as whether or not video surveillance is used and what type of security procedures and policies are in place. You also want to know what happens in the event of an emergency such as a fire or if someone breaks into the facility.

5. Clearly Define Who Can Access Your Data

While you probably want your employees to able to access data via the cloud, it’s important to clearly define exactly who gets access to what data. Access can further be defined by different levels of data. You can, for example, store certain data that is accessible to all employees and separate more sensitive data to be accessed by only certain individuals. In this case, it’s up to you to tell your provider who is entitled to view specific data.

Note: Don’t forget to ensure that sensitive data is also encrypted for additional protection.

6. A Backup Strategy Is A Must

As with data stored elsewhere, it’s important to have a backup strategy in place. To be fair, data stored “in the cloud” is usually secure. However, the unexpected can sometimes happen. While cloud storage is often thought of as a way to backup data stored at your business, it’s just as important to have a backup for any data stored directly to the cloud, especially data that is constantly being altered by various users. Backup could include storing duplicate data in a different physical location, which could provide protection in the event of a natural disaster or other damage to the primary facility storing your data.

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Nick Barnett

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