Cloud security threats come in many different forms including data breaches, hijacked accounts, data loss, denial of service, and system vulnerabilities. As organizations and individuals continue to adopt the cloud, securing all of the stored information is a top priority. Companies must be aware of the risks and solutions in order to prevent serious damage.
Security Risks to Cloud Data
Any data stored in the cloud is at risk for cyber-attack. From phishing to security scams, hackers are constantly developing new ways of gaining access to sensitive information. This type of attack can damage a company’s reputation and affect its market position. Furthermore, it can also lead to legal issues if customers’ personal information was released.
Without multi-factor authentication and strong passwords, cyber criminals can easily gain access to accounts. Once they’ve hacked into one account, unauthorized users can access private information. Depending on the hacked account’s permissions, bad actors could cause a sizable data breach.
Because your company’s API and UI are exposed to the public, having strict authentication can help ensure that cyber criminals cannot gain access. However, inadequate security leaves your interfaces vulnerable to attack. Possible consequences include jeopardized confidentiality, accountability, integrity, and availability.
Although many cloud providers heavily focus on security, not all attacks can be prevented. Should hackers gain access to your system, it’s possible that they could erase all of your data with the intention of ransoming it. If no backup storage is in place, your organization could face a permanent loss of data.
Account hijacking is a form of identity theft that involves cyber criminals using stolen information in their attacks. When this occurs, your organization can lose control of its account, data, functions, business logic, and any other dependable applications on the account. A breach of this form should be taken very seriously. It can lead to large data leaks and damage to the company’s reputation.
While outside hackers may be the first party that comes to mind, they are not the only threat to your cloud’s security. Current or former employees also pose a risk. Because they already have access to the company’s sensitive information, a malicious insider could expose or sell proprietary information. To minimize the risk of an internal attack, it’s vital to ensure user permissions are kept up to date based on employment status.
Best Practices for Cloud Security
As more people store their information in the cloud, the risk of cyber attacks increases. With a larger pool of potential targets, bad actors are furthered incentivized to develop new schemes. Despite this, the cloud is still a worthwhile storage option.
Steps you should take to secure your information include:
- Encrypting data
- Using two-factor authentication
- Understanding open API frameworks
- Making sure everyone uses hard-to-crack passwords
- Restricting accessibility to sensitive information
Protect your business
Having the right tools and systems in place can prevent data breaches and cyber crimes. As the world becomes more automated, it’s crucial for your organization to understand the available cyber security measures to protect its data and devices. Cyber Security Tools for Today’s Environment, an online 11-course program from IEEE, helps businesses improve their security techniques.
Interested in learning about getting access to the course for yourself? Visit the IEEE Learning Network to learn more.
Nailwal, Mukesh. (14 October 2019). CLOUD SECURITY BASICS: HOW TO ENSURE THAT YOUR DATA IS SAFE. Techgenix.
Soni, Rakesh. (11 October 2019). The Rise of Cloud Computing Threats: How to protect your cloud customers from security risks. Customer Think.