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By Ben Puzzuoli, Technical Sales Director at KineticD
KineticD Online Data Backup Expert Tips: Avoiding Data Security Breaches in the Cloud
With more and more businesses continuing to export an increasing amount of their IT concerns to the cloud, the issue of data security has never been more crucial. After all, history has shown that data security breaches can cause businesses to suffer millions of dollars in losses. And, while some breaches in data security may not even be committed with any malicious intention to commit fraud or steal identities, whenever the public hears of any type of inconsistency in the data security of an organization an environment of mistrust can quickly spread amongst both customers and business partners alike. For these reasons and more, maintaining data security at all costs must be of the highest concern to business organizations if they wish to remain in business in the first place.
Online data backup and cloud computing, which by its very nature puts the mission critical data of businesses into the hands of third party vendors, is an area in which data security must obviously be of the utmost priority. After all, when signing up for the services of a cloud vendor, the customer and cloud service provider are entering into a highly important, trust-based relationship in which the client’s data can easily be jeopardized if this trust is put into the wrong hands. And, true data security in the cloud is unfortunately by no means an easily-wrought commodity, with cloud vendors needing to not only safely store their clients’ digital files, but also to duplicate and share this data in a highly complex manner over multiple virtual machines in order to both maximize the use of physical resources and to most effectively protect their clients against data loss as well.
A recent study conducted by MIT that focused on Amazon.com’s web services, which are an example of a public cloud network, opened the eyes of many as to just how potentially vulnerable data that is stored in the cloud can be to compromisation by outside agents. The practice of “cloud cartography”, which essentially denotes using the physical locations of different servers in a cloud system to exploit vulnerabilities within that system, is unfortunately gaining ground. Through this practice, malicious cyber agents can use side channel attacks to either extract people’s personal information, or to simply corrupt, and thus render useless, any data that they are able to access. And, it has also been found that hackers can unfortunately exploit private cloud networks in much the same way as they do public ones.
Of course, when one considers these disturbing truths about the vulnerability of cloud data, it can be quite easy to begin to wonder whether or not cloud services should be trusted at all. However, one must bear in mind that regardless of these vulnerabilities, the utilization of cloud services has become an extremely essential practice for business entities of all sizes. After all, the digital information of the world has obviously become increasingly mobile, and thus the mobility and flexibility of data access and sharing are quickly becoming more or less expected commodities in the world of business. And, one must also keep in mind that cloud services help businesses save money by offering IT infrastructure with scalable, “pay-as-you-go” pricing systems that must be taken advantage of if growing businesses with more limited budgets want to be able to compete with the more established of their competition.
When it comes down to it, maintaining data security in the cloud is much like being safe in any other aspect of life; one must be sure to ask the right questions and to be as informed as possible. For example, any cloud vendor that is worth considering must have transparency as to what their data security practices are and how they are implemented. Potential cloud clients must be aware as to not only how these practices work, but also how they may impact the overall performance of the cloud vendor’s services as well. Cloud vendors should be testing the security of their systems on a regular basis, and have solid recovery plans in place for any and all potentially unanticipated vulnerabilities. And, clients of cloud services should also be aware of the physical locations at which their cloud data is to be stored.
Moreover, there are many different types of cloud services, all with varying degrees of security inherent to them. Businesses should know what level of services their potential cloud vendors offer, and must often make the sometimes difficult decision as to whether or not they want to save money by taking advantage of virtually segregated, but essentially public cloud resources, or if they wish to spend more in order to have their own physically private cloud infrastructure put in place. And finally, businesses and individuals alike that are seeking cloud services should perform extensive research as to the history of any cloud vendor that they are considering, including looking into reviews and discussion groups online to see what others have to say about their past experiences with the cloud vendor in question.
Of course, we here at KineticD take data security extremely seriously. Perhaps that’s why in the over 10 years that we’ve been in the online data backup and cloud computing service industry we have never once suffered a security breach or a single aberration in our 100% data recovery track record. Since 2002 we’ve made it our top priority to provide only the most cutting edge cloud services to all of our clients, and with our bank-grade, 448-bit data encryption, and patented Continuous Data Protection technology, we think that you’ll like what we can do for your company’s cloud IT. But, don’t just take our word for it, look online to see what others are saying about our award-winning cloud services, and stop by our website today to sign up for our free 14-day trial to find out for yourself just what the KineticD Advantage is all about!
About the author: Ben Puzzuoli is Technical Sales Director at KineticD, a Toronto based online data backup service provider.
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