Security Measures for the Cloud
A report from research firm Gartner shows a $150 billion revenue from the cloud that is going to be made in two years’ time, proof that companies eagerly adopt cloud services. But while many companies are busy moving their data to the cloud, some doubts about the security of the cloud still persist. In the IT world nothing is or has ever been 100% secure, and the cloud is no exception. Still, by taking some measures when adopting cloud services companies can dramatically reduce security risks.
Public Cloud and Private Cloud
Companies using the public cloud benefit from automated solutions that enable them to control the services they provide. But with the public cloud, companies don’t have the same level of control as they do when they use a private cloud. By contrast, in a private cloud there are fewer people and fewer resources, and so it’s far easier to control. Security risks that arise in both public and private cloud can be controlled by following internal and external best practices.
Identity management controls are the first that a company should implement. Staff members within the company should follow a strict password protocol, and LDAP controls should be used, as they will contain crucial information in a single location. Next, data must be segregated, so that the outsourcing team doesn’t receive more access than it should. Finally, encryption, firewalls, intrusion detection systems should all be implemented.
Legal Side of Cloud Storage
Your major concern should be about the personally identifiable information stored in the cloud. There are countless legal issues arising from the storage of such data. In Europe, for example, there are regulations that specify where such data can be stored and where it cannot. The cloud storage provider you choose must know how to deal with these legal issues.
Choose the Right Providers
It’s relatively easy to become a cloud provider. This is why some providers out there, although capable of launching services, don’t have the expertise or technology to sustain those services at a high level. When choosing a provider, ask questions such as what strategies it has in case of disaster and how will it deal with security breaches. Ask for better encryption and data storage than what you’re initially offered, and review SaaS providers linked to the cloud storage provider.
In essence, to avoid security risks in the public and private cloud, choose an established cloud provider and enforce strict privacy and user access policies.
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