Security in the Cloud: Part 2

January 20th, 2012

The cloud has been a great thing for small business owners fighting through tough economic times. Instead of purchasing costly enterprise software, business owners can save their dollars by accessing powerful computing programs in the cloud, everything from high-end word processors and project-management tools to spreadsheets and Photoshop alternatives. But, the cloud isn’t perfect, especially when it comes to security issues. Entrepreneurs must be aware that their documents, presentations, and marketing materials can be damaged when they are stored in the cloud.

Password issues

One of the biggest security issues when dealing with the cloud is password protection. This is also one of the biggest security issues outside of the cloud.

Business owners must be careful to select passwords to their cloud projects which are difficult for others to guess. The best option is for owners to include a mix of letters and numbers in their passwords. Owners also need to be cautious about sharing their passwords with too many people. The more individuals who have access to passwords, the more at risk important data and documents are.

Hacker alert

A few serious problems that will not soon disappear for everyone who uses a computer are hackers, malware, and spyware. As business owners have little control over how secure the cloud is this part of security can be very frightening indeed. Companies like Microsoft and Google must create their own security measures to safeguard the data stored in the cloud.

Common sense protection

Protecting yourself from theft in the cloud is often as easy as applying some common sense practices.

First, sensitive data is probably not the best thing to store in the cloud. If your data is so sensitive that a compromise on its security could spell the collapse of your business, think about saving it on a physical computing system and apply a secure back up protocol that is more controllable.

Secondly, before giving every employee free access to cloud-stored data, think carefully about which employees actually needs access to that information. People are often careful about protecting their laptops and desktop computers from prying eyes; this attitude should be applied to the cloud as well.

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