Why The Cloud Is As Secure As Your PC

Why the Cloud Is As Secure

Recently, a great portion of hype in the technology sector is related to cloud computing security and reliability. Recent service interruptions experienced by leading cloud services providers like Amazon, in combination with security issues and credential leaks that occurred in services delivered by Sony and Google’s Android operating systems raised questions about the overall security and safety of cloud-based solutions.

There is no simple or straightforward answer to the question whether the Cloud is a secure place for storing data, conducting transactions and maintaining corporate databases. Moreover, one should distinguish between private, public and hybrid clouds used to store corporate data run business applications. Most security experts agree that cloud-based solutions are as secure as offline software and storage products and services that run in a corporate environment, on a corporate server and are isolated from external networks.

Actually, a private cloud i.e. most clouds deployed by enterprises, small and large ones alike, can experience downtime as often as public clouds like those offered by Google and Amazon, for example. Private, public and hybrid clouds utilize infrastructure, hardware and software that is similar to the ones used in corporate private networks; therefore, IT specialists face the same problems in a “traditional” and a cloud environment. Over 200,000 Google’s Gmail users saw their email accounts emptied in a day, loosing emails and other documentation they archived for years. However, corporate users could experience the same troubles should a company server crash, deleting data stored in their corporate email accounts. No one is insured against hardware faults and Google later admitted that the mysterious loss of data occurred due to a combination of hardware and software faults.

The human factor should not be underestimated, too.

Government agencies around the world avoid using cloud services offered by corporate providers because of the risks related to data leaks and data protection in the Cloud. Actually, most reputable providers of cloud services apply strict data and software access policies similar to those implemented by government bodies. On the other hand, data leaks within the government-run companies and agencies occur more frequently than information leaks originating from corporations. If an American sergeant managed to transfer sources to Wikileaks, thousands of classified government cables stored within the U.S. Army computer networks, one should bet that the same can happen to myriads of files and emails stored in public cloud services. The greatest danger is related to targeted attacks and business espionage while individual users should beware mostly of identity theft.

Reliability of cloud services is another issue that should be taken into account. A growing number of providers offer cloud services and products while Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) and Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS) are now commonly used to reduce corporate costs. Other enterprises rely on Infrastructure-as-a-Service to run their business but in all these scenarios business depends on external resources to run smoothly their everyday operations.

Thus, reliability of cloud products and services is now a major issue while many IT specialists admit they are not convinced in the reliability of cloud solutions deployed within their respective organizations. For example, an enterprise greatly reduces its software licensing fees and payroll costs by deploying a cloud software platform but such a solution can cost dearly if the PaaS provider does not offer an acceptable reaction time in case of malfunctions and service faults.

Once again, the same troubles can occur in a “traditional” software environment where a platform is not supported in an appropriate manner or a company lacks experienced IT staff. Connection and processing speed is also a concern when the issue in hand is cloud computing but this can be subject to a separate article.

In reality, the Cloud is as secure and safe as is a personal computer connected to a closed corporate network, provided that the network is maintained by well-trained specialists and all available and applicable security and safety measures are implemented. No complete security is available in an interconnected environment where practically all devices and gadgets are able to connect to a sort of network.

Apart from imperfections offered by software and hardware, the human factor is still the main threat to security and safety in the Cloud.

By Kiril Kirilov

Sorry, comments are closed for this post.

Comic
Fully Autonomous Cars: How’s It REALLY Going To Work?

Fully Autonomous Cars: How’s It REALLY Going To Work?

Pros and Cons and What the Experts Think Science fiction meets reality, and modern civilization is excitedly looking forward to the ubiquity of self-driving cars. However, an omnipresence of fully autonomous cars won’t happen as quickly as even some hopeful experts anticipate. While the autonomous car pros versus the cons race (See infographic discovered via…

The Lighter Side Of The Cloud – Bottlenecking

The Lighter Side Of The Cloud – Bottlenecking

By David Fletcher Please feel free to share our comics via social media networks such as Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram, Pinterest. Clear attribution (Twitter example: via @cloudtweaks) to our original comic sources is greatly appreciated.

Recent Articles - Posted by
Fintech Systems, Advancements and Investments

Fintech Systems, Advancements and Investments

Fintech Growth According to a recent report, global investment in fintech companies including both venture-backed and non-venture-backed businesses reached $9.4 billion in the second quarter of 2016; investment in venture capital-backed fintech startups, however, fell by 49%. Nevertheless, the Pulse of Fintech, published jointly by KPMG International and CB Insights, suggests venture capital investment in…

How Identity Governance Can Secure The Cloud Enterprise

How Identity Governance Can Secure The Cloud Enterprise

Securing The Cloud Enterprise Cloud adoption is accelerating for most enterprises, and cloud computing is becoming an integral part of enterprise IT and security infrastructure. Based on current adoption trends, it’s clear that the vast majority of new applications purchased by organizations will be SaaS applications. The allure is evident, from cost savings to speed…

Achieving Network Security In The IoT

Achieving Network Security In The IoT

Security In The IoT The network security market is experiencing a pressing and transformative change, especially around access control and orchestration. Although it has been mature for decades, the network security market had to transform rapidly with the advent of the BYOD trend and emergence of the cloud, which swept enterprises a few years ago.…

Your Biggest Data Security Threat Could Be….

Your Biggest Data Security Threat Could Be….

Paying Attention To Data Security Your biggest data security threat could be sitting next to you… Data security is a big concern for businesses. The repercussions of a data security breach ranges from embarrassment, to costly lawsuits and clean-up jobs – particularly when confidential client information is involved. But although more and more businesses are…

Cloud Services Providers – Learning To Keep The Lights On

The True Meaning of Availability What is real availability? In our line of work, cloud service providers approach availability from the inside out. And in many cases, some never make it past their own front door given how challenging it is to keep the lights on at home let alone factors that are out of…

The Cloud Is Not Enough! Why Businesses Need Hybrid Solutions

The Cloud Is Not Enough! Why Businesses Need Hybrid Solutions

Why Businesses Need Hybrid Solutions Running a cloud server is no longer the novel trend it once was. Now, the cloud is a necessary data tier that allows employees to access vital company data and maintain productivity from anywhere in the world. But it isn’t a perfect system — security and performance issues can quickly…

Staying on Top of Your Infrastructure-as-a-Service Security Responsibilities

Staying on Top of Your Infrastructure-as-a-Service Security Responsibilities

Infrastructure-as-a-Service Security It’s no secret many organizations rely on popular cloud providers like Amazon and Microsoft for access to computing infrastructure. The many perks of cloud services, such as the ability to quickly scale resources without the upfront cost of buying physical servers, have helped build a multibillion-dollar cloud industry that continues to grow each…

Surprising Facts and Stats About The Big Data Industry

Surprising Facts and Stats About The Big Data Industry

Facts and Stats About The Big Data Industry If you start talking about big data to someone who is not in the industry, they immediately conjure up images of giant warehouses full of servers, staff poring over page after page of numbers and statistics, and some big brother-esque official sat in a huge government building…

Utilizing Digital Marketing Techniques Via The Cloud

Utilizing Digital Marketing Techniques Via The Cloud

Digital Marketing Trends In the past, trends in the exceptionally fast-paced digital marketing arena have been quickly adopted or abandoned, keeping marketers and consumers on their toes. 2016 promises a similarly expeditious temperament, with a few new digital marketing offerings taking center stage. According to Gartner’s recent research into Digital Marketing Hubs, brands plan to…

4 Different Types of Attacks – Understanding the “Insider Threat”

4 Different Types of Attacks – Understanding the “Insider Threat”

Understanding the “Insider Threat”  The revelations that last month’s Sony hack was likely caused by a disgruntled former employee have put a renewed spotlight on the insider threat. The insider threat first received attention after Edward Snowden began to release all sorts of confidential information regarding national security. While many called him a hero, what…

5 Predictions For Education Technology

5 Predictions For Education Technology

Education Technology Although technology has fast influenced most sectors of our world, education is an area that’s lagged behind. Many classrooms still employ the one-to-many lecturing model wherein the average student is catered for while a few are left behind, and others bored. Recently, there’s been a drive to uncover how to use technology successfully…

Using Big Data To Make Cities Smarter

Using Big Data To Make Cities Smarter

Using Big Data To Make Cities Smarter The city of the future is impeccably documented. Sensors are used to measure air quality, traffic patterns, and crowd movement. Emerging neighborhoods are quickly recognized, public safety threats are found via social networks, and emergencies are dealt with quicklier. Crowdsourcing reduces commuting times, provides people with better transportation…