Data security in the cloud is complex. On the one hand, cloud computing can enhance data security and provide a solution to data recovery, yet on the other hand, cloud providers can steal your business data or sell it to a third-party for profit.
Businesses are concerned about how secure cloud servers are and whether they can trust service providers to ensure sensitive business data and privacy policies are upheld.
In 2019, an IBM-commissioned study performed by McKinsey & Company revealed that most businesses choose to retain 80% of their workload on-premises.
With the outbreak of the global pandemic in 2020, however, companies had to adapt their file-sharing strategy and pivot to cloud platforms where remote teams could collaborate and access files from home.
The IDG 2020 Cloud Computing Survey indicates that 59% of participants confirmed they would be migrating to a cloud platform within the next 18 months.
However, there is an understandable amount of paranoia circulating around corporate boardrooms. C-suite jitters are not alleviated by reports that Microsoft, Apple and Google – three key players in cloud storage – have all been compromised.
How can you trust cloud service providers?
Most legitimate business owners care about the quality of service they provide to customers. Delivering the service your customers expect is the only way for a business to survive.
The golden rule is no different for cloud storage providers. However, that does not mean malicious actors do not exist. Protecting your business data is a two-way responsibility between a company and the cloud service provider.
It’s wise to perform due diligence before partnering with a cloud service provider. First of all, check if they offer robust services that satisfy the demands of your business.
Secondly, you want to be assured that you have full control over your business data. Thirdly, you want to ensure the could service provider has efficient security defences that help you to prevent a data security breach.
Cloud technologies boast advanced cybersecurity measures. According to cybersecurity analysis, 90% of data breaches are down to human error.
Weak or reused passwords are among the main culprits. A lack of awareness about cybercrime techniques also leaves unsuspecting employers exposed. Misconfigured networks cause vulnerabilities in computer systems.
As a baseline service, look for IT solutions providers that utilise a number of cloud security methods including encryption, patch management, two-way authentication, access control and managed anti-virus software.
It is also recommended that companies have an effective data backup system and disaster recovery strategy. Whilst cloud storage is an integral part of data backup, cloud platforms are not infallible.
Dropbox is not immune to losing files and Microsoft does not support backup for public folders. Other cloud storage platforms can only recover folders with a size quota of 100GB.
IT support services generally offer services that are more flexible and reliable than the largest and most well-known cloud service providers. IT support agencies are also less likely to be the primary target for hackers.
Data is not secure in the cloud – at least not 100% secure anyway. However, data is not 100% when stored at your business premises either. For most companies, data security best practices probably involve a blend between data stored on the cloud and data stored in on-site servers.