The cloud presents compelling business benefits, which is why most organizations have adopted the cloud at some level. It promises reduced IT costs, easier scaling, better collaboration, and increased flexibility. Even before the COVID-19 pandemic made cloud solutions a practical necessity for businesses shifting to a remote work model, the cloud services market was massive. In 2019, it reached $227.8 billion. According to Sid Nag, research vice president at Gartner, at that point, cloud adoption was already mainstream.
While hugely beneficial, organizations that aren’t taking the right steps to protect their data could be making themselves vulnerable. To keep your data safe and protect your business from threats, make sure you aren’t making these common cloud mistakes.
Leaving access to the cloud wide open
Organizations today aren’t just using the cloud for data storage. They’re accessing software as a service (SaaS) business tool. They’re developing software and hosting it on cloud servers – and even shifting a good chunk of their infrastructure to the cloud. Experts predict that 67 percent of enterprise infrastructure will be cloud-based in 2020. As a result, there are more vulnerable access points to cloud data because there are so many cloud users within an organization. In-house personnel can pose an unintentional or intentional security risk if they have access to sensitive data on the cloud.
How to avoid this mistake: Protect cloud access by identifying who is authorized to access sensitive data and implementing necessary access management solutions. These solutions can include software designed to control cloud access such as a Cloud Security Broker, two-factor authentication, and assigning usage rights down to a granular level.
Not using cloud-based security tools
With an on-premise data center, businesses typically use on-premise security tools such as firewalls to guard the network, VPNs, and antivirus software. When using cloud solutions, your cloud services provider (CSP) is responsible for keeping their data centers secure and for protecting the software that runs on cloud services, so they handle part of your cloud security. A common error is assuming this is enough. It’s not – if your business isn’t using appropriate cloud-based tools, your data is at risk.
How to avoid this mistake: Don’t assume your CSP will handle all of your data security. Check your cloud service agreement and work with your CSP to determine what it’s doing to protect your data and where their responsibilities end. From there, create a cloud security plan that aligns with your security goals and ensures your business is meeting all relevant compliance regulations.
Leaving cloud hardware unprotected
Ultimately, your data is as safe as the servers that house it. When you’re using a private or hybrid cloud architecture, it’s critical the hardware used for cloud deployment is protected. Some organizations make the mistake of focusing on security for the cloud environment with encryption and access policies, but they overlook the actual hardware.
How to avoid this mistake: Use ongoing monitoring to protect your cloud hardware and to watch out for malware attacks and other threats. Consider working with a cloud solutions provider that will work with your IT team to create a tailored cloud security plan that includes your hardware.
Using a manual patch process for enterprise security
Updating and installing patches can be time-consuming, especially for enterprises. But, if IT administrators are waiting too long in between security updates, risk levels are going to go up.
How to avoid this mistake: To improve cloud enterprise security, follow an automated patch process. This will ensure frequent updates and new patches.
Take the right steps now
The cloud offers plenty of advantages, but organizations need to implement the right cloud security tools and processes to avoid the risk of data loss. Get the most out of using cloud solutions by taking the right steps to ensure your network is safe. Reach out to PRO OnCall today if you have any questions.