8 Cloud Security Tips for Small Businesses & Startups

Cloud security is described as an evolving sub-domain in association to network security, computer security and information security. It stands for a broad spectrum of controls, technologies and policies to protect specific data. Small business and startups as they rely more on cloud storage, must consider the security related issues seriously, because a single security breach can cost them the whole business.

Below are 8 tips for small businesses and startups to optimize their cloud security:

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1- Decide On the Security Level You Need In Regards to the Data You Plan to Share With an Application:

Businesses should be aware of their needs as well as know about how the public-clouds go about handling security. A good way to start would be to proactively educate the necessary employees in your firm in relation to security protocols. For example, Security protocols associated with uploading of healthcare records are typically different when compared to credit-card transactions or important financial records.

You as a business must ensure that the app provider you decide to use has the correct features that are able to meet up to your specific security requirements. These needs must be stated in your SLA (service level agreements). There are some good guides on Cloud Storage Boss around all of this.


2- Find out About Any Further Work Needed in Order to Increase Your Data Security to a Favorable Level:

Typically, software-application security responsibilities will be shared between an app provider and the cloud-customer. To begin with, you must be able to state security policies on how the cloud services cannot and can be used. A variety of mindsets and skills are necessitated to conduct changes from behind-the firewall internal security policies onto the network-centric policies. Other important decision points internally should be to evaluate the encryption capabilities of the app provider you decide to use.

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When transferring data from or via to your application, keep in mind that someone you may not know of may be able to read the information if the data was not encrypted. If the SSL was not correctly configured you run the risk of third parties who are able to eavesdrop into the two-party communication that occurs in cloud. This third party will also be able to retrieve information that was exchanged. These security issues are easy to overcome, but a vital security risk is associated with authentication and finding out what measures will work for your business from what the app provider offers is often a challenging task. The more security-conscious users often employ what is known as the 2-way factor “authentication apparatus” in order to counteract any potential threats.


3- Find out Whether Your App Provider is Able to Meet up With Your Access and Identity Management Standards:

You will need the cloud-based app to conform to these standards in order for your software to integrate into your SSO (single-sign on) and your access-management architecture.


4- Find Out if the Data Protection Practices from Your App Provider is Adequate:

You must inquire whether your data will be transferred to the Cloud through a secured channel. It is advisable to examine protection and data classification policies on offer from your app provider.


5- Examine the Physical Personnel and Security for the App Providers Business:

Not all the app providers have been designed in the same way. In fact, the providers are so diverse it is really in your best interests to do a bit of research before deciding to deal with one of these providers. The physical types of security measures include protection from disaster-recovery planning, co-location and protection from any natural disasters. Also find out about the personnel-management practices and ask about who will be able to view your data and information.

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6- Find out About the Restitution and Response Policies When a Data Security Breach Occurs:

Before deciding on the right app provider for your business make sure you ask about their recourse in the instance that they have their data hacked.


7- Consider the Legal Implications Related to Data Security Breach:

If your data becomes stolen, compromised or the application happens to crash, find out who will take on this liability. In many cases, the app providers will not take on this responsibility so make sure you choose a company that will and provides you with this responsibility in writing. Here is a good piece on the subject.


8- Find out What Will Happen to Your Data Once Your Contract with the App Provider Has Come to an End:

Ensure that the SLA you use offers detailed descriptions about how your data is delivered once your contract has ended. If a prompt delivery of accurate records is not possible, this can be very dangerous to your business.


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