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By Ben Puzzuoli, Technical Sales Director at KineticD
KineticD Online Data Backup Expert Tips: Identifying and Avoiding Potential Security Risks in Cloud Computing
When a company signs up for a cloud vendor’s services, it takes more than just the successful implementation and utilization of the services in question to transform them into a satisfied customer; they must also trust the integrity of the cloud vendor’s services as well. After all, any attempt to protect your company’s data by backing it up in the cloud is rendered completely ineffective if the security of said data is compromised in the process. For this reason, online data storage providers must take many important steps in order to avoid security breaches in the cloud.
Indeed, regardless of the almost flawless security records of most online data backup and cloud computing service providers, there are still many potential data security risks when it comes to cloud computing, and these risks vary depending on the nature of the cloud services being rendered. Cloud storage companies that sell client software as part of their services, for example, must pay special attention to the potential of malware attacks taking place on their customers’ systems. On the other hand, cloud storage vendors that supply entire computer platforms for their clients need to be especially focused on the potential for botnet viruses, which are viruses that compromise each computer on a given system using the same platform. And, in addition to this, online cloud storage providers that supply virtual infrastructure to their clients have their own special security concerns to mitigate as well.
The employment of hypervisors, which is a hardware virtualization technique that allows for different operating systems to run on the same platform (and is also a necessary component of public cloud storage), can bring about specialized security risks as well. Since hypervisor programs allow for multiple users with different operating systems to share the same storage field, things can potentially go quite awry if the online data backup and cloud computing provider does not take every step possible to maintain the integrity of the system. If a hypervisor system is corrupted, the individual accounts within the system can become inaccessible to the administrator, which can leave client data potentially vulnerable to hackers.
In addition to this, of course, online data storage providers must be sure to employ the highest level of data cryptography available if they wish to keep their clients’ data safe from those that might wish to steal or render it corrupt. This is the reason that you often hear cloud vendors touting their high level of bank or military-grade data encryption, which is indeed key when it comes to maintaining the integrity and safety of any data being stored in the cloud. This level of encryption must be applied to client data both while in transmission between the cloud vendor and client, and while being stored on the cloud vendor’s servers as well . In fact, many online data backup service providers go so far as to render their clients’ data encrypted in a way that even they could never unlock it, administering a client-side security key to their customers that is the only way that the data could ever be accessed by anyone.
Of course, along with dealing with security issues, online data storage providers must also constantly monitor the amount of activity happening on their servers in order to ensure that none of their customers lose access to their data at any time. Threshold polices and load balancing agents must be utilized in order to monitor and control the amount of data access and transfer activity so as to allow the cloud vendor the ability to be prepared for any sudden rise in demand. These all-important policies also maintain the individual limitations on data transfer amounts that are applied to different users’ accounts, which are key to maintaining the integrity and accessibility of any cloud storage infrastructure. Also, by carefully monitoring the amount of data requests that happen on a given cloud storage system, administrators enable themselves to block any malicious hackers that would want to take down the entire system by overwhelming it with fake data requests.
There is no doubt about it, when choosing an online data backup company, it is crucial to asses the integrity of their security measures. Here at KineticD, we apply 448 bit Blowfish bank-grade encryption (a level of encryption that has never been cracked) to all of our customers’ data before it even leaves their computers to be safely stored on our servers. We also issue all of our clients their own individual encryption key, meaning that even our most privileged system administrators could never access your data. From encrypted client passwords to our Carrier Grade SSAE16 data center, you’ll know that your data is safe with KineticD. Please stop by our website today to find out why over 40,000 users trust us to store and protect their business’s data.
About the author: Ben Puzzuoli is Technical Sales Director at KineticD, a Toronto based online data backup service provider.
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