If your organisation has opted into the many benefits of cloud migration for your storage or hosting needs, it’s essential to implement effective cloud security to support your system.
So what is cloud security? It’s the tools, strategies and practices that are used to keep information hosted in a cloud safe.
As with any IT security system, cloud security won’t ever be entirely impenetrable, but there are some best practices that will go a long way towards making your system more secure.
Some of the most common security risks associated with cloud services are unauthorised access by someone outside of your organisation, data leaks, incorrect permissions for internal users (where someone can see information which they shouldn’t have access to), and malicious software or an attack on your infrastructure.
Most cloud service providers will have some security measures in place to prevent these things from happening, but that isn’t enough. Every organisation also needs to have its own security systems as they are the most invested in keeping their data safe.
What to do?
The main cloud security tools available are firewalls, encryption and user tracking. Cloud firewalls protect against attacks by creating a virtual fence or barrier to prevent access to your cloud infrastructure.
Encryption works like a code where information is scrambled and can only be unlocked using the correct decryption key. This way, even if data is somehow accessed by someone with malicious intent, they won’t be able to understand or use it because they don’t have the decryption key. Data should always be encrypted, whether it is in storage in the cloud or being transmitted for use.
Identity and access management tools are able to control which users have access to different parts of a system. It’s important for cloud services because all information in the cloud is accessed based on a person’s user profile, not where they or their device are located.
In addition to using the right security tools, there are some best practice approaches that your IT service provider should have in place to boost your cloud security. Firstly, having a clear plan is essential. This includes developing user education tools to help your staff understand some basics around their usage habits, such as password management and knowing how to identify phishing.
It’s also helpful to have consistent measures in place for all your different systems and cloud services, such as having the correct configuration of the security settings for all your cloud services.
When used well, cloud services and hosting can have enormous benefits for small and medium-sized businesses, as long as they have the right security systems in place to keep them as safe as possible.
For help with getting your business onto the cloud, or keeping it safe while using cloud services, contact our Numata cloud services team.