The cloud is a significant technological advancement of the past decade. It’s made our lives easier, it’s a great place to store your data, and it helps you run your business more efficiently. Unfortunately, security can be a concern sometimes. Cloud security risks come in all shapes and forms. Here’s an overview of one of the more common risks and what businesses can do to mitigate them. Security risks can happen through data, the platform, or through access. Organizations must understand the risks associated with storing their data in the cloud and strive to mitigate the known risks. Here are five risks common to cloud operations and how to overcome them.
Data is a precious commodity in big business. It’s also a key security risk and valuable target for attackers. There are numerous things that can lead to data security risks in the cloud. It can happen at the employee level with improper disclosure of information by employees. They might intentionally or (more likely) unintentionally share malware through a network. This can cause untold damage —especially when it’s caused by employee negligence or misuse of systems. 79% of companies have experienced a data breach—many of them due to insider threats and carelessness—over the past year. Insider threats can be blocked by using ID and account management procedures. IAM works by limiting access to certain resources—granting access to specific resources and limiting privileges—to prevent unauthorized data tampering, theft, or use. Incorporating monitoring and logging policies into your organization can work with IAM to discover intrusion points and unauthorized access.
Although the cloud makes it easier to connect multiple computers and cyberspace, the lack of a need for physical access to a computer means accounts can be taken over by hackers. When someone gains unauthorized access to an account and uses it for malicious purposes, that’s an account takeover. Once they gain access, they can access confidential information such as financial records or personnel records and in danger the private information of the cloud’s owner. Most of the time, an account takeover occurs because somebody manages to snag the credentials through a successful social engineering attack. Social engineering attacks such as phishing attacks do people into providing credentials by making an email or solicitation appear like a legitimate website they use. It can also happen over the phone with instructions on how to access something. These types of scams are common and can cause big trouble for companies affected. To prevent account takeovers, companies can enable two-factor authentication or multi-factor authentication whenever possible. It’s also pragmatic to educate employees about cyber security best practices, including what to look for in a potential phishing scam.
Data breaches are one of the worst things that can happen in a cloud. A data breach causes harm to customers(loss of information, potential identity theft) and organizations (revenue loss, disrupted operations, lawsuits, reputational loss). Most data breaches involve the human element and are now becoming a ripe target for ransomware attacks. A data breach in the cloud can lead to data loss and theft, which can be detrimental to everyone and ultimately disrupt or even severely damage your operation.
Cybersecurity risks and potential data loss are just the facts of life working with the cloud. Improper storage and lack of security protocols can cause data to be exposed, inviting error or theft. Storing sensitive information that can identify users can also cause significant issues. Then there are different points of failure such as compromised employees, storing bad data on the cloud, or using unsanitized data in the system. When that happens, the day that you need can’t be retrieved and it sort of defeats the purpose of having a cloud in the first place. So, what kind of security can you use to fix this? One is preventing human error. Human error is one of the most common entry points for hackers. Find ways to prevent compromise points and reinforce the security of your cloud. Consider investing in a cloud security solution that can monitor container security, application security migration security, and all the other pertinent access points along a hybrid cloud solution. Preventing these risks means relying on IAM controls and encryption. Monitoring is also essential to safeguard your data, have strong organizational policies in place, and using powerful software to help bolster data security in the cloud. By understanding risks and implementing solutions, you can prevent your cloud from becoming compromised and keep it secure as you go about your daily operations.
Malware is a common problem. Essentially viruses or other software that can disrupt, damage, or steal data, malware impacts over 50% of businesses every day. And it can find its way to the cloud. So, you need to reinforce your security to prevent it. Since viruses affect everybody who uses a cloud server, leveraging building security features like firewalls and antivirus become critical to your operation. It’s also prudent to check for patches and updates regularly. Incorporated into your normal cybersecurity practices and use it in conjunction with cloud security software. That way you can keep malware at bay and mitigate that risks as much as possible.