Friday, January 20, 2012

How Secure is the Cloud? Part 2

The cloud can be a great thing for small business owners struggling through tough economic times. Rather than purchasing pricey enterprise software, business owners can save their dollars by accessing powerful computing programs in the cloud, from high-end word processors and project-management tools to spreadsheets and Photoshop alternatives. But, the cloud isn't perfect, particularly when it comes to security issues. Entrepreneurs must be conscious that their documents, presentations, and marketing materials can be damaged when they're stored in the cloud.

Password issues

Password protection is a crucial issue when dealing with the cloud and personal computers as well. Passwords can often be easily guessed or they are shared too freely.

You ought to carefully select passwords to your projects stored in the cloud. The more complicated your passwords are the more challenging they are to guess. One way to accomplish this is to use a combination of numbers and letters in your passwords. Also, you shouldn't share these passwords with lots of people.

Hacker alert

Hackers, malware, and spyware are issues for everyone who owns a computer. Likewise, they are serious issues for cloud environments. As a user of a third party cloud storage service, you do not have control over the security of the cloud which could be very scary for business owners. Large companies must set up their own security for the data that is stored in the cloud.

Common sense protection

Protecting yourself from theft in the cloud is often as easy as applying some common sense practices.

First, owners should consider what sort of information they are storing in the cloud. The most sensitive data, data that could damage a company if it is lost or stolen, may not be suitable for cloud storage. Instead, this data may be better stored on a business owner's individual computing system and reliably backed up.

Secondly, before giving every employee free access to cloud-stored data, think carefully about which employees actually needs access to that information. People are often careful about protecting their laptops and desktop computers from prying eyes; this attitude should be applied to the cloud as well.

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