Cloud-based services offer a lot of benefits to businesses. They can make it easier for companies to access and share data, provide more opportunities for collaboration, and improve efficiency. But this convenience comes at a cost. Data is often stored on servers outside of your company’s network, which makes it more susceptible to security breaches, as opposed to the traditional approach of storing data locally.
In this article, we’ll explore how any company can implement a structured approach for data protection in the cloud that will take into account the different types of potential threats and operational challenges.
Types of Cloud-Based Challenges
While many businesses have adopted the cloud, there are still a variety of challenges organizations face with respect to data protection. Below are a few examples of the type of problems your business might run into when implementing cloud-based services:
#1: Minimizing security risks
Risk management is a continuous process, but in the cloud, an organization doesn’t have complete control over its data. A company can choose to keep data on-site, but it must be protected and the way it uses the data must be taken into account when deploying it.
When implementing a cloud-based service, it is imperative to take all of these factors into account and the processes used to deploy and manage the data, and possibly consider a cloud workload protection service that can help you mitigate any vulnerabilities.
#2: Taking the time to understand how data is going to be used
Let’s say your organization has a system for transferring files between offices. It may sound simple, but it needs to be stored, secured, and monitored in the cloud to ensure that it can continue working well without interruption.
Some of the more common concerns with cloud-based services include, for example, no ability to delete data or the fact that data may be permanently accessible. This is particularly true for information that you use for both proprietary and commercial purposes. There are some vendors that give you the ability to disable certain functionality, but in general, it’s not that simple.
In addition, some cloud-based services have more stringent security requirements than others.
#3: Improper configuration and user access
As is the case with any software, a business needs to make sure that the initial configuration process is followed to the letter. This process is typically defined by the vendor, and you need to make sure that you understand exactly what’s expected, how you should be using the platform, and how it can be modified to your business needs.
In some instances, you may need to have employees and customers set up the solution themselves, which can be time-consuming and confusing for those who don’t have any experience with the technology. This is especially true if the solution doesn’t work well with the other software your organization uses.
Implementing a Structured Approach for Data Protection in the Cloud
Moving your business to the cloud does not automatically provide you with a solution for data protection – in fact, it opens a whole new set of challenges for you. For the sake of making sure your data remains protected, it’s important to understand how to implement a structured approach for data protection in the cloud.
The importance of data encryption
The first step in addressing data protection is the implementation of encryption, which makes data accessible only to authorized individuals who can unlock it.
Encryption helps to protect both the confidentiality and integrity of the data in a way that can’t be accessed by unauthorized users. Because of this, encryption must be implemented in any data-driven business if data integrity is to be maintained.
Implementing a multipart, secure, and reliable data transfer network
After encryption, it’s necessary to secure the transfer of data across a network. Some solutions offer a single platform for encrypted and secure data transfer, while others provide a multipart, secure, and reliable data transfer network for multiple users.
The network should be scalable, manageable, and secure. The data should be secure and comply with industry and regulatory standards. When it comes to privacy, the solutions should be able to resist attacks and configuration errors.
Managing user access to data
In the ideal scenario, all data would be stored on one platform, with access managed by only the people with the proper permissions. However, even in this scenario, you’ll want to manage users’ access to the data so that you can prevent unauthorized access.
You’ll need to establish ownership and responsibilities over the data, and then assign rights to specific users or groups. For example, you may need to limit access to certain files or to change permissions over time so that only authorized users can access certain information. This is best done by implementing a policy of least privilege necessary, where users can only access the data that is required for their role.