In an era where reputation is king, the thought of migrating sensitive data to the public cloud – despite the potential cost-savings and performance benefits – is oft-met with trepidation from compliance departments. However, with a little work and small shift in mindset, it's not only possible, but probable, that compliance can be simplified.
Here are four ways cloud-migration can help make keeping your data secure and compliant easier.
1. Less Paperwork, More Time
Moving important documents to the public cloud has the potential to streamline your entire compliance and audit process. The days of keeping track of innumerate compliance spreadsheets, flowcharts, and graphs are a thing of the past . Working in the cloud, all compliance documentation can be kept in one place, and easily accessed by anyone with an internet connection and the appropriate permissions – guaranteeing everyone is working from the same crib sheet.
Instead of wasting time juggling multiple email attachments and Excel files, your compliance staff will be free to focus on analysis, risk assessment, and exercising good judgment – the things they're best at.
Auditing is further simplified with the help of a cloud management services (CMS) provider, who can provide you with a wealth of compliance evidence, making the auditing process easier while also saving you time.
2. Simplified Authentication
Controlling who's authorized to access sensitive information, whether on-premises or in private-cloud configurations, is key to remaining on the right side of compliance – especially for global organizations in the era of GDPR.
However, a large number of data-breaches are caused by poor access management – with over 80% occurring due to hacked passwords – which raises the question, can your business really afford not to keep a close eye on authentication?
Most businesses configure their access controls based on company hierarchy, giving employees access to certain documents and systems based on their role. Managing a system like this is often laborious, leading many companies to forgo customizing permissions at a more granular level – a prerequisite to true access security.
Many of the leading public cloud providers, however, offer this level of industry-leading, detailed access control right out the box. This ensures employees only work with the files you decide and prevents hackers infiltrating other core systems through just one login password.
3. End-to-End Encryption
While encryption is common when accessing information across the internet, many companies don’t bother encrypting their data when it’s in transit between internal servers. They assume that because these servers are behind a firewall, they’re impenetrable.
However, over 30% of data breaches are caused by your employees – either by mistake or with malicious intent. Without encryption at the local level, once they're in your system, hackers only need rudimentary computer skills to gain access to your private data.
While there is no such thing as perfectly safe data, once it's stored in the cloud, a CMS provider could detect any resources that are configured without appropriate data encryption enabled, thus ensuring complete compliance at all times.
4. Defense Against Threats
Being well prepared to defend your database against external attacks is a security requirement that, if not properly provisioned for, can cause your business massive compliance issues. Whether it’s an SQL injection, man-in-the-middle, ransomware, or distributed-denial-of-service attack, cyber-threats are on the rise. Still, enterprises alone often lack the necessary resources to effectively detect, defend against, and prevent these attacks.
Public cloud services, on the other hand, pour tens of millions of dollars into cyber-crime prevention and have a wealth of experience in the matter. Microsoft alone fends off 1.5 million hacks every day. This combination of dedicated resources and cyber-security experience simply can't be matched by an enterprise on its own.
Contrary to popular belief, migrating to the public cloud can keep your data safer and your company more compliant. It still takes plenty of legwork to get everything configured and optimized, but a dedicated cloud management services provider can help, and use their expertise to periodically monitor and analyze your cloud environment to ensure it's running compliantly, securely, and efficiently.
The bottom line is this: don't fear your jump to the cloud.
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Topics: Cloud Management Services