To understand the risks of cloud computing, you must first understand what cloud computing is. Cloud computing delivers various services via the internet, including data storage, database and software updates, application control, and networking. This type of service requires access to the web and an internet connection to operate the programs. Cloud access renders swift innovation and flexible resources but can also open the door to unwanted access and other dangers of the internet.
What is cloud computing?
The National Institute of Standards and Technology characterizes cloud computing as follows:
- Crucial Characteristics:
The crucial characteristics of cloud computing include on-demand self-service, wide network access, swift flexibility, and calculated service.
- Service Models:
Service Models include SaaS, which stands for Software as a Service, PaaS, which stands for the platform as a service; and IaaS, which stands for Infrastructure as a service.
- Deployment Models:
The Deployment Models provide personal cloud, public cloud, community cloud, and hybrid cloud.
The Risks of Cloud Computing:
In the past few years, the usage of cloud computing has multiplied. Numerous businesses are shifting their work and data reserves to the cloud. Cloud computing reduces costs, provides quick and remote access, speed, and so much more.
Despite the benefits, cloud computing domains experience serious security threats along with other risks.
Let’s have a look at the top 5 risks of cloud computing:
There is increasing legislation and laws regarding data protection. For all the businesses functioning in the healthcare sectors, financial sectors, or the government m sector, they need to have strict rules and regulations regarding cloud access and data access.
For example, HIPAA has set a rule that healthcare workers cannot expose their patients’ data without their proper consent. HIPAA requires healthcare workers to maintain the data confidentiality of their patients.
Hence, it gets extremely difficult to stay compliant due to cloud service’s easy access. It might even get harder to keep track of people who can access your information.
The DoS attacks or Denial of service attacks are common, especially while using the cloud computing service. These attacks involve multiple systems attacking your system.
The attackers drown your system with requests. They carry out these attacks using botnets often rented from developers.
While using cloud services, there is a great risk of credential theft, where a potential threat gains access to your business’s credentials. The credentials of your company may be inappropriately used or exposed. Stealing them also allows someone to gain access to the sensitive data of your business.
It is important to note; these credentials thefts are not necessarily by some outsider. There may be inside threats as well. The inside threats may include your employees, contractors, partners, or a third party. Additionally, credentials thefts may also be accidental. The loss of credentials may also be a financial loss. It could also lower your market value.
Loss of customer trust and revenues:
In case of a data breach or account hijacking, you might end up losing all your data and even the revenues. Consequently, your customers and clients lose trust in your business if you fail to make up for the loss. If you face frequent problems, your business might lose the investments and all the revenues.
Thus, losing customers and potential clients is an enormous risk while using cloud access.
When companies switch their data and assets to the cloud, the visibility and control of the company reduce dramatically. Especially when operating the external cloud services, the control and responsibilities are handed over to the cloud service providers.
The shift in the control and responsibilities largely depends upon the type of cloud model you use.
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Mitigating the risk factors:
Now let’s dive straight into the cloud solutions for the risks discussed above.
The solutions are some of the best practices that help you stay safe and secure while using cloud support and services :
- To reduce the compliance issues, make sure to go through the compliance terms and agreements. The companies should also maintain strict rules and regulations regarding data access and keep a vigilant eye on third parties and threats.
- To deal with the DoS attacks, you may protect your network infrastructure with a web application firewall. You might also opt-out for content filtering and use load balancing to check the potential traffic inconsistencies.
- To reduce data breaches and credential thefts, you may enforce identity and access control. You may also update and create strong passwords. You can also apply multi-factor authentication. Use the cloud data backup to secure your data. Moreover, you should also reduce third-party access to your data. Train your employees and workers about account hijacking.
- To keep your clients and customers happy:
- Try to make up for the loss quickly.
- Add extra layers of security to your client’s data and restrict its access to limited and trusted employees only.
- Monitor the privileged users.
In this way, you might not lose your customer loyalty and investments in the future.
- To prevent a lack of control in cloud computing, companies should use technologies that continuously scrutinize for misconfigured resources. These technologies help to mitigate the problem in real-time. Companies may implement automation that gives them security over their data.
The risks and security threats while using cloud services or opting out of a cloud service provider are serious. Whether malicious or accidental, they might prove detrimental to your business’s progress and reputation. You may even fail to maintain customer loyalty and diminish the client’s trust.
Like any other web domain, it is important to monitor your activities and keep your data secure. We have discussed all the issues and risks that you may come across while using cloud services. It is also important to make a wise choice while selecting the server and the cloud service provider. To mitigate these risks, we have also discussed the solutions.
If you make sure to maintain the solutions and the practices discussed, you can reduce your potential risks while using the cloud services to a great extent.
About Cinch I.T.
Since 2004, Cinch I.T. has been providing customer-focused I.T. services for businesses of all sizes. Whether you need on-site support or a reliable cloud computing office, our computer support offers the fastest and friendliest service in the industry. Cinch is one of the nation’s fastest-growing I.T. support franchises with 8 locations and counting. To learn more about our history as a computer support service provider, visit cinchit.com. For more information about I.T. franchise opportunities, visit cinchfranchise.com.
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