Is Your Data Safe in the Cloud?

Depending on who you ask, you might get a different answer. So, is your data really safe in the cloud?

Every day you hear a new story around cloud-based solutions being hacked and exploited (iCloud anyone??). So who do you trust to give you the truth on how to keep your data safe using cloud technology that is going to help you grow your business without the threat of dismantling it through an online security breach? It can be a dangerous place to play if you don’t have the street smarts needed to keep you safe.

Who can you trust?

If you want to make the most out of the cloud, the company you use should be paramount to your decision. If you are relying on an organization that doesn’t take security seriously and doesn’t have the proper infrastructure in place to protect your data, you risk the threat of a breach. Last year Adobe’s Creative Cloud was hacked due to a flaw in their security and over 2.9 million users had their name and encrypted credited card information stolen.

But this is only one element – even with all the security structures in place there is another major security component to touch on next.

Who can you trust?

If you want to make the most out of the cloud, the company you use should be paramount to your decision. If you are relying on an organization that doesn’t take security seriously and doesn’t have the proper infrastructure in place to protect your data, you risk the threat of a breach. Last year Adobe’s Creative Cloud was hacked due to a flaw in their security and over 2.9 million users had their name and encrypted credited card information stolen.

But this is only one element – even with all the security structures in place there is another major security component to touch on next.

Train, Train, Train!!

One of the biggest security threats to your company is your own employees. It’s not like they intentionally set out to cripple your system but by not enforcing good practices and teaching them proper procedure you leave them exposed.

Something as simple as having a weak and generic password puts them at risk. Recently iCloud was hacked because of this specific reason – through a weak password, hackers were able to exploit celebrity accounts and leak personal photos that they thought would remain private. To increase the strength, have passwords expire every 60-90 days, and make the requirements include a combination of the following: Upper & lowercase letters, numbers and special characters.

You Get What You Pay For...

There is a reason why companies make both consumer and business class products – they serve different needs. Consumer grade cloud products – think Dropbox and Gmail – are free for a reason. They’re made and maintained cheaply and have minimal resources put in place to ensure that they aren’t exploited.

So why would trust them with your business? Sometimes you can go with a consumer grade product but when you need to know that you aren’t going to be the next business that is plastered over the news because of a security breach, you should use a business class cloud product to do it.

Cloud products like Office 365 allow you the benefit of accessing your data anywhere, but can also centrally manage it. If any employee loses their phone of tablet, you can remote wipe the data through a centralized system to ensure you always have control of who can access it. The payoff if that you can also have users that can remain productive on the go without being a threat to your organization.

Good luck and play safe!