Cloud Security – How Your Business’s Data Is Protected


Ever asked a question without wanting to know the truthful answer? Many businesses feel the same, which is why only around 10% of the world’s data is stored within the Cloud. Many businesses are interested in Cloud computing and Cloud storage, but they do not like the answer when it comes to Cloud security. The biggest business user of Cloud services by far is Amazon, which stores all its data in the Cloud and runs most of its services off the Cloud. Accenture’s Kamran Ikram says most businesses are wary of putting their data onto the Cloud because of security concerns, and that most businesses are risk-averse, so how is your business’s data protected when you store it in the Cloud?

Encryption Is Key To Data Safety

The most obvious way that your data is kept safe is through encryption. Data is encrypted while in transit and while at rest. The encryptions are often called “Bank Level” encryptions to the lay person, but in short they are not unbreakable/un-crackable, although they may as well be. Until we live in a world where 4D transistors are as common as silicon ones, and where quantum computing is a reality, then high-level encryptions will keep most hackers out.

The Cloud Company Sets Security

Encryption is just one way that Cloud companies keep your data safe. The company in charge of the Cloud service is the one responsible for keeping your data safe. It is the same as putting your money in a bank; you may put it in one bank with a big safe, and another bank with just a big sack. The Amazon Web Services (AWS) has over 1800 security controls that govern its services, which is their way of proving that their “Safe” is the strongest.

Setting Your Own Encryption Keys

Some Cloud companies allow you to control your own encryption keys, which makes it difficult for the providers themselves to access your information. The biggest worry is that a Cloud provider may look at files or data within the Cloud but controlling your own encryption keys makes it more difficult for the providers to sneak a peek.

Creating Your Own Passwords

All Cloud services allow you to set your own passwords. A more complicated password is harder for brute-force hackers to crack, which gives you an added layer of security. Most IT consultancies will also insist that you use two-factor authentication too, such as a password and a one-time code that is delivered to your phone. Passwords are still the weakest link for hackers and online agitators. It is often far easier and more profitable to trick a user than it is to break into a secure Cloud service.

Permissions for Different People And Programs

Another part of the process that you control may be permissions. In most cases, you are able to control which people and which accounts have access to your Cloud data, and that may also include giving permission to different programs and apps.

Customer Demand Is A Big Motivator

Cloud storage accounts for only a fraction of business/corporate data storage, and part of the reason is due to concerns over security, which is why larger Cloud companies keep investing money in newer and better security. Public breaches, have shaken user confidence, so Cloud companies are pushing hard to tighten security over and over again.

Sharding Is A DropBox Mainstay

DropBox is one of a few Cloud services that shards and encrypts. They break up your data into chunks and then encrypt the chunks. This means that the hacker has more work to do even if the hacker is brilliant at breaking encryptions. It would be the equivalent of breaking into a guarded and locked office, only to find all the important paperwork has been shredded and put into a large basket. DropBox also stores different chunks of data in different locations, so even if a hacker is able to decrypt a large chunk of information, the hacker only gains access to random blocks of data.

Links but Not Downloads

The Cloud service called “Box” gives you links to your data so that you may view it rather than downloading it in full. This lowers risks because there is less downloading going on, and because there is less data floating around on local servers or local hard drives.

Where Is the Information?

The biggest Cloud services store your data on numerous servers at any one time, and larger Cloud services run by Google, Apple, Microsoft and Amazon are hosting Cloud servers in as many as 12 regions at once. The reason for this is so that your data is extra safe even if a whole region’s servers go dark.

You Can Store Data In Your Own Region

Thanks to things such as data sharing agreements coming to an end (such as Safe Harbour), and thanks to region-specific leaks, some Cloud services are allowing you to specify which regions your data is kept in. Larger Cloud services have servers dotted all around different regions, so your data will still be safe in numerous locations.

Are Businesses Moving Over To The Cloud?

US Bank Capital One reduced its number of data centers from eight to three and moved most of its processes to AWS. Plus, Towergate Insurance has moved a lot of its IT infrastructure onto the public Cloud. Plus, the fact that Amazon uses its own Cloud services is a big endorsement since they have so much to lose. Confidence in Cloud computing and Cloud storage is growing.