Cloud computing can help secure your business’ data and increase the reliability of your system. If you’re running a network of dated computers which are rarely if ever backed up you may be at serious risk of compromising your data. Going to the cloud can increase security and promote your peace of mind.
Figure Out Assets
Assets range from operating systems, hosted servers, customer information and customer related management applications. Assess the value of these assets to find the proper cloud solution which can be tailored to your particular security needs.
Before moving any assets to the cloud be honest with your assessment. If online hackers stole private information and it took you a full day to recover this data how would it affect your business? Figuring out the value of assets helps you purchase the appropriate level of cloud security to protect that data or application.
One huge problem associated with cloud computing is security breaches which can compromise private data. Information which relates to your company may not be as important in terms of potential legal issues but if customer or client information becomes compromised you must take full responsibility for such a security breach.
The cloud provider does not need to take responsibility for security breaks. If your business acquired the data and chose to store the data through the cloud you must own any problems with security.
Doing strict research on compliance requirements may indicate that you’re not allowed to use cloud services to handle data. Health care, banking and other industries where privacy is paramount may be regulated by industry and government to such a degree that data must be stored within your country or you may face other severe restrictions.
Since electronic data in certain industries is required to be handled in a sensitive nature do your research to stay within the bounds of the law. The type and number of controls allowed may be determined through regulation. Share a list of requirements for your watch list of cloud providers to make sure both sides are clear on legal issues. Certain standards apply to activities like processing credit card orders, for example.
Just because no security problems occur doesn’t mean you’ll avoid trouble in dealing with the government. If you’re operating outside of the bounds of the law you will find yourself regretting it in the future when regulators come crashing down on your business.
What Can You Risk?
Determine the company’s level of risk tolerance. Choose how much you will risk before looking for providers and exploring their options for your business. Think through the critical nature of assets, the regulatory hurdles and burdens of liabilities before you calculate your risks.
Perhaps you could explore a hybrid cloud solution. This involves program logic or some data remaining at the physical location of your company.
Determine how much security will cost in your office and throughout the cloud. The cost of hiring a cloud provider will rise substantially as you add more security protocols to your tailored package. Resist any urge to lowball your negotiations. Going with the lowest cost solution can destroy your company’s reputation in a heartbeat if your bargain basement package puts your entire network at risk. Nothing is worth losing critical data and your good name.
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