Cloud computing continues to shape the data storage practices of private individuals and businesses alike. People are being more reliant on the public cloud for storing their valuable information and has made it a generic means of transferring sensitive data. Easy accessibility of data is one of the leading reasons for the widespread use of cloud technology. However, users often wonder if these benefits come at the cost of compromised security. Cloud technology is evolving at a rate of knots and this creates loopholes in the systems giving rise to security risks and vulnerabilities. To neutralize these security concerns, businesses often opt for the best information security certifications to train their workforce with the skills required to overcome such security issues.
Protecting data is the utmost priority of organizations that encourages them to implement high-end security measures to prevent data and security breaches. There are various security risks associated with the use of the public cloud, and appropriate defensive measures need to be taken to set up a comprehensive security plan. For setting up an optimum security solution, it is also essential to value the importance of networking fundamentals. Certifications such as MTA 98-366 Networking Fundamentals help individuals develop a better understanding of the essentials of network security.
Following are the 6 simple steps through which users can effectively protect data in the public clouds:
- Create a Local Data Backup
Data loss adversely affects business continuity, and creating a local backup is one of the best security measures any company can adopt. Creating a data backup simplifies data management and satisfies the need for accessibility even at times of cloud security breach. That’s why making electronic copies of data is immensely important for users using the public cloud as their premium storage. Backing up data on the external storage devices is perhaps the most conventionally-sound way to protect valuable information and business data. Users can also use independent cloud storages to backup their data as it provides an additional layer of protection when the data accessibility of one of the cloud is compromised. Businesses often use both the backup alternatives in tandem to ensure seamless data accessibility at times of security breach, power failure, or network issues.
- Don’t Store Sensitive Information
Storing sensitive information such as passwords or financial records on the cloud is never a good option as it is merely impossible to achieve actual privacy in the virtual world. Users should avoid using virtual storage as their personalized vault for storing sensitive data as a breach in security can leave them severely compromised. Businesses should even avoid storing the details of intellectual property such as copyrights and patents to keep them safe from a security calamity. There is also a risk of an unwanted transfer of information from one data management system to another, which often results in data leakage. So, to prevent sensitive information from being leaked into the wrong hands, it is advisable to use external and more conventional storage means such as external drives.
- Set Stronger Passwords
Perhaps the simplest and most effective means to protect data in the public cloud is by setting up a stronger password. Easy to remember passwords are the basis of many security breaches leading to the exploitation of valuable data and information. Creating a unique password can effectively prevent users from hackers and cybercriminals in search of a weak link in the information security system. A mix of alphabets, numbers, and symbols can be used to create robust and hard-to-break passwords. Users can also leverage the knowledge from the best information security certifications to learn the art of implementing the best information security practices.
- Use Locally-Encrypted Cloud Services
Cloud storages providing local data encryption offers an extra layer of protection against security breach and data leakage. Data in locally-encrypted storage requires to be decrypted in order to gain access. Even administrators and service providers cannot access the information without decryption. This helps achieve zero-knowledge privacy and protect your sensitive data stored in the public cloud. Two-step authentication is another viable encryption means used to protect data on the cloud.
It is also essential to identify the sensitivity of the information and the level of privacy needed to maintain a perfect balance when choosing cloud services. This helps users select cloud services based on their unique needs for security. For instance, businesses requiring a comprehensive security solution often select locally-encrypted cloud services while users with basic security needs can use simple cloud storage.
- Use Third-Party Encryption Tools
Using third-party encryption measures is also an effective technique to protect your data virtually stored on the cloud. These tools deploy encryptions and passwords to data files before uploading them on the cloud servers. Even when using locally-encrypted cloud servers, third-party encryption tools can provide an extra layer of protection to your sensitive data. The most effective way to use this data protection technique is to make and encrypt zip files of data before uploading them on the servers. Creating a zip file not only compresses the data but also makes it easy to encrypt and secure big chunks of information collectively. Besides this, users can also share these zip files encrypted with passwords easily with other users in the network.
- Actively Examine Security Measures
Active examination of security measures is essential to ensure that the best security practices are being adopted. Quite often, businesses require the services of certified security professionals to ensure that there’s perfect compliance with the necessary security standards. Security professionals with certifications such as MTA 98-366 Networking Fundamentals hold substantial knowledge needed to assess and examine the company’s security measures. Both on-cloud and off-cloud security assessments hold pivotal importance and are mandatory to set up a secure and well-protected information system. These examinations also help identify the loopholes in security and assist in implementing better and effective security measures.