State of the Cloud Survey in 2018 revealed that 95% of respondents use the cloud for data storage purposes, with the number of businesses incorporating the technology increasing every day. In presence of such rapid growth, the possibility of cloud security risks also rises. Malware can penetrate your system and affect your system, allowing it to enter the cloud.
Overcoming these threats requires swift strategizing, adequate management of your operations and a well-planned execution. But how can this be achieved without sacrificing other technical elements of the cloud, such as the flexibility it offers your processes? Here are some strategies that will help you minimize your cloud security risk without hampering the pace at which you conduct your business.
1. Train Employees
The most common source of security threat in an organization happens to be the lack of awareness among employees. They lack security-related education necessary for battling such threats. A solid starting point is to hire a professional trainer who will teach your team how to develop and deploy security strategies, how to update your system’s security measures in time, while also demonstrating defense measures against threats.
Since security is the responsibility of every employee, try to involve the entire workforce of the organization into these training sessions. Keep your team updated with response sheets that will test their promptness and adaptability for a security threat scenario. It would also help to run unannounced security drills as this will keep your workers on their toes.
2. Build a Reliable Data Backup Plan
As we rely more on cloud computing, more data is being transferred in and out of the servers. This means that there is a higher chance of data being corrupted or misused. If your data is not backed up in time, you might end up with corrupt files that would compromise your operations. Make sure that you have a secure backup plan ready in case a mishap occurs. Additionally, distributing data and application across multiple locations will further help your offsite storage and disaster recovery needs.
3. Monitor Data Access
Backing up data is not enough to ensure its sanctity remains protected—limiting its access to only certain employees improves the stability of this data considerably. In other words, the smaller number of hands that touch the data, the better. It also becomes very easy to track down the source of a data breach when portals to access the data are limited and targeted.
This means that, although it is necessary to grant access to some workers, it would not be wise to give them access permanently. In such cases, your IT managers can take command, monitoring the access of data by establishing access controls. This also reduces the number of access codes, which would limit them to only one sign-on (SSO) authentication.
4. Encrypt the Data
So far, we have learned how to store and access data to minimize your cloud security risks. But, the access to such data should never be independent of encryption. No matter how small the data is, it needs to be protected cryptographically. It might seem unnecessary at times, but remember that there is always the possibility of data breach. If the data is encrypted, you will not be anxious of the possibility of improper handling or unauthorized access of the data midway. In short, your data will always be in safe hands.
5. Pilot Scenarios
Once ready with necessary arrangements for cloud data security, never forget to put it to the test. Devise scenarios where you test whether or not the system you have created can be trespassed or tampered with. The best path forward is to hire someone who has not been in the process of system development because they will not be familiar with any developmental codes. All in all, piloting helps in preventing cloud security threats instead of rectifying them. This move also saves time.
Once you apply the strategies outlined above, you will see a newfound fluidity in your workflow—the purer the data, the quicker the response time. Your decisions will be informed, and you won’t have to worry about any data leak in the course of the data transfer process. By taking these steps towards minimizing cloud security risks, you will be able to secure the integrity of your data with a stronger foundation.
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