Cloud Storage & Data Security

Cloud Storage & Data Security

Data Security

Cloud computing has emerged as an innovative approach to provide computing services. It offers numerous advantages such as fast deployment, lower costs, pay for use, rapid elasticity, scalability, ubiquitous network access, and greater resiliency. One of the primary uses of cloud computing is for data storage. Cloud storage is a model of networked online storage and can store data on multiple third-party servers. Cloud storage is an evolution of traditional hosted storage technology (FTP, WebDAV, NFS/CIFS) that involves more sophisticated APIs, namespaces, file or data location virtualization, and management tools. Wu et al. (2010) identified several benefits of using cloud storage such as ease of management, cost effectiveness, lower impact outages and upgrades, and simplified planning. So, cloud storage is convenient and offers more flexibility.

According to Borgmann et al. (2012), most cloud storage providers offer two types of services:

Basic cloud storage servicesthey are services mainly offer virtual online disk space that can be used as a normal hard drive for storing all types of data. Users cannot access these services directly. In fact, they are embedded into custom software using application programming interfaces (API). Examples of such basic cloud storage services are Amazon S3 and Google Cloud Storage.

Advanced cloud storage services: these services not only use basic cloud storage services for the actual storage of data but also they provide interfaces such as client or web applications which significantly simplify the use of the service for the customer. Many services may also provide an easy to use API to allow integration of the service’s capabilities into third-party software. An example of advanced cloud storage services is Dropbox.

The number of cloud storage providers has increased dramatically over the last couple of years so choosing the best one is a tough decision. In fact, trust, reliability, security, ease of use, cost and their support are the most important factors in choosing the best cloud storage provider. One of the crucial factors should be considered before choosing a cloud storage provider is the level of security offered by a cloud storage provider and the reputation that comes along with it. In other words, it is crucial for the cloud storage to be equipped with storage security solutions so that the whole cloud storage system is reliable and trustworthy. Unfortunately, majority of cloud storage systems do not provide security guarantees in their Service Level Agreements (SLAs). Lack of security support can be a main obstacle for the adoption of cloud services.

Cloud storage should possess four desirable security properties: confidentiality, integrity, write-serializability, and read freshness (denoted by C, I, W, F). In fact, confidentiality is achieved by encryption, data integrity is protected using message digests, non-reputation is supported by signed message-digests, freshness is achieved by periodic audit, and write-serializability is guaranteed by chain hash.

Anonymized - Log - Intel

Many scholars believe that although database and document encryption can be efficient way to improve security, encryption often results in a serious server slowdown. Hence, many companies such as SK Telecom, a leading mobile telecommunication company in South Korea, have adopted another technique, anonymization, to increase the security of data in the public cloud. In fact, data anonymization is the process of changing data so that it can be processed in a useful way, while preventing that data from being linked to individual identities of people, objects, or organizations. So, data anonymization can be an effective way to protect sensitive data.

By Mojgan Afshari

About Mojgan Afshari

Mojgan Afshari is a senior lecturer in the Department of Educational Management, Planning and Policy at the University of Malaya. She earned a Bachelor of Science in Industrial Applied Chemistry from Tehran, Iran. Then, she completed her Master’s degree in Educational Administration. After living in Malaysia for a few years, she pursued her PhD in Educational Administration with a focus on ICT use in education from the University Putra Malaysia.She currently teaches courses in managing change and creativity and statistics in education at the graduate level. Her research areas include teaching and learning with ICT, school technology leadership, Educational leadership, and creativity. She is a member of several professional associations and editor of the Journal of Education. She has written or co-authored articles in the following journals: Journal of Technology, Pedagogy and Education, The Turkish Online Journal of Educational Technology, International Journal of Education and Information Technologies, International Journal of Instruction, International Journal of Learning, European Journal of Social Sciences, Asia Pacific Journal of Cancer Prevention, Life Science Journal, Australian Journal of Basic and Applied Sciences, Scientific Research and Essays.

View All Articles

One Response to Cloud Storage & Data Security

  1. As useful as services like Dropbox are, the wild west nature of the web necessitates world class security measures. Any business using the cloud needs to prioritize this when selecting a provider…!

Why Small Businesses Need A Business Intelligence Dashboard

Why Small Businesses Need A Business Intelligence Dashboard

The Business Intelligence Dashboard As a small business owner you would certainly know the importance of collecting and analyzing data pertaining to your business and transactions. Business Intelligence dashboards allow not only experts but you also to access information generated by analysis of data through a convenient display. Anyone in the company can have access…

5 Ways The Internet of Things Will Drive Cloud Growth

5 Ways The Internet of Things Will Drive Cloud Growth

5 Ways The Internet of Things Will Drive Cloud Growth The Internet of Things is the latest term to describe the interconnectivity of all our devices and home appliances. The goal of the internet of things is to create universal applications that are connected to all of the lights, TVs, door locks, air conditioning, and…

What Top SaaS Vendors Do To Ensure Successful Onboarding

What Top SaaS Vendors Do To Ensure Successful Onboarding

What Top SaaS Vendors Do I am not going to mention names in this article, but if you want to be the best, you must look at what the best do – and do it better. The importance of investing in SaaS onboarding can be easily overlooked in favor of designing efficient and powerful software…

Cloud Infographic: The Future of File Storage

Cloud Infographic: The Future of File Storage

 The Future of File Storage A multi-billion dollar market Data storage has been readily increasing for decades. In 1989, an 8MB Macintosh Portable was top of the range; in 2006, the Dell Inspiron 6400 became available, boasting 160GB; and now, we have the ‘Next Generation’ MacBook Pro with 256GB of storage built in. But, of course,…

The Storytelling Machine: Big Content and Big Data

The Storytelling Machine: Big Content and Big Data

Bridging The Gap Between Big Content and Big Data Advances in cloud computing, along with the big data movement, have transformed the business IT landscape. Leveraging the cloud, companies are now afforded on demand capacity and mobile accessibility to their business-critical systems and information. At the same time, the amount of structured and unstructured data…

Cloud Computing Is Greener Than You Think

Cloud Computing Is Greener Than You Think

Cloud Computing Is Greener Than You Think Last week we touched upon how a project in Finland had blended two of the world’s most important industries, cloud computing and green technology, to produce a data centre that used nearby sea water to both cool their servers and heat local homes.  Despite such positive environmental projects, there…

The Future Of Work: What Cloud Technology Has Allowed Us To Do Better

The Future Of Work: What Cloud Technology Has Allowed Us To Do Better

What Cloud Technology Has Allowed Us to Do Better The cloud has made our working lives easier, with everything from virtually unlimited email storage to access-from-anywhere enterprise resource planning (ERP) systems. It’s no wonder the 2013 cloud computing research IDG survey revealed at least 84 percent of the companies surveyed run at least one cloud-based application.…

How Data Science And Machine Learning Is Enabling Cloud Threat Protection

How Data Science And Machine Learning Is Enabling Cloud Threat Protection

Data Science and Machine Learning Security breaches have been consistently rising in the past few years. Just In 2015, companies detected 38 percent more security breaches than in the previous year, according to PwC’s Global State of Information Security Survey 2016. Those breaches are a major expense — an average of $3.79 million per company,…

15 Cloud Data Performance Monitoring Companies

15 Cloud Data Performance Monitoring Companies

Cloud Data Performance Monitoring Companies (Updated: Originally Published Feb 9th, 2015) We have decided to put together a small list of some of our favorite cloud performance monitoring services. In this day and age it is extremely important to stay on top of critical issues as they arise. These services will accompany you in monitoring…

Four Reasons Why CIOs Must Transform IT Into ITaaS To Survive

Four Reasons Why CIOs Must Transform IT Into ITaaS To Survive

CIOs Must Transform IT The emergence of the Cloud and its three delivery models of Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS), Software as a Service (SaaS) and Platform as a Service (PaaS) has dramatically impacted and forever changed the delivery of IT services. Cloud services have pierced the veil of IT by challenging traditional method’s dominance…