Cloud storage services and applications have proven to be a real game changer for today’s businesses. Greater reliance on cloud services is a trend that is not expected to stop. According to one cloud security report, the market is expected to grow into a 9 billion dollar industry by 2019. Learning a little more about security issues, concerns and solutions can ensure that businesses are better able to protect themselves from a breach.

1. The true cost of a data breach

The true cost of a serious data breach is often hard to calculate. While having sensitive information stored in the cloud accessed by unauthorized users can lead to many problems, the public perception and backlash of being seen as a less then secure organization may be nothing short of a disaster. Issues like the potential loss of potential revenue, damage done to your brand or image as well as more tangible concerns like having financial accounts and information jeopardized are what make effective cloud security a paramount concern.

2. Cloud storage is seen as the riskiest application

As many as half of cloud service users cited data storage as their biggest security concern, followed by financial and accounting services. Storing sensitive information in the cloud may be a far riskier proposition for organizations that fail to prioritize basic security measures. While there is no way to eliminate all risks involved in doing business within today’s digital marketplace, even the most rudimentary precautions can be effective in ensuring that your data, documents and information are able to be kept safe and secure.

3. Poor user habits pose the largest security threat

The biggest threat to your digital security is often internal in nature. Serious security issues are often created by poor user habits such as:

  • Failure to update passwords
  • Visiting unsafe websites or downloading files that may contain malware
  • Failing to adhere to established security protocols

Educating your staff, providing employees with concise guidelines regarding internal security protocols and auditing user habits at regular intervals can all improve your level of security. Taking the appropriate steps to ensure users know enough to avoid unsafe habits is often the single most important thing that can be done to improve the level of your online and digital security. Incorporating security efforts into your dayto-day workflow can play a key role in your efforts to protect your data.

4. The right tools and resources can make a real difference in improving cloud security

Virtual private networks (VPN), firewalls and encryption applications all play an important role in protecting your data and information. While these resources may seem basic, they have all been proven to be effective. While maintaining a firewall and encrypting all files stored in the cloud may enhance your security, poor user habits can reduce the effectiveness of these resources. Proper training and education is often essential for ensuring employees and staff are able to to effectively utilize the security resources that will make the biggest difference.

5. Many organizations fail to employ security measures entirely

Despite the potential risks of a breach, many businesses and organizations fail to implement any digital security efforts. Assessing your current security risks, taking steps to address any concerns that may pose an unacceptable threat to your business and incorporating user training into your operational process are often well worth the time and cost. Allowing a lack of digital security to jeopardize the future of your business is never a concern that should be overlooked.

Seeking professional solutions

Smaller businesses that lack an in­-house IT department may find themselves hard pressed to deal with cloud security concerns. Consulting with a third­ party service provider regarding your current situation, future needs and available resources can provide plenty of useful insight and helpful information. When it comes to protecting sensitive date, important files and information critical to your business, increasing your level of cloud security may prove to be an essential undertaking.

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