Be it our desktops or mobile devices, cloud storage is now closely linked with our endpoints. This means data syncing happens in real time to and from the cloud on a continuous basis as various documents, files, passwords and applications are kept up to date across devices and endpoints.
As a business, there are several advantages of having instant data accessibility from anywhere in the world and from any device. While this of course is beneficial, it also opens doors to network security issues as external unauthorised parties attempt to hack into your IT environment.
This means you need to have a robust cloud storage security and endpoint management solutions in place to keep network breaches at bay.
Let’s take a look at how you can secure your data and presence online with some handy cloud storage security tips!
1. Use Strong Passwords and Two-Factor Authentication
As you increasingly lean on cloud computing services for your business operations, y0u need to apply the same standard security tips as usual – opt for long and unique passwords with a mix of special characters and numbers making them tough to crack. It is recommended that you use a dedicated password manager as it’ll become impossible to remember the passwords to various applications and websites.
Ensure that you keep your passwords well-protected and safe at all times. Don’t fall for any phishing scams, for instance emails requesting you to key in your password. To strengthen your credentials, you should switch to two-factor authentication or 2FA. Once you enable 2FA, you can thwart any unauthorised visitors from gaining access to your files on the cloud even if they know your login credentials.
2FA means you connect with your account by passing multiple layers of security authentication. Once you use your password and username, another code will be sent to your registered mobile number or email address to doubly ensure that it’s you who is trying to access the cloud environment. This is really helpful if a cyber criminal attempts to hack into your account.
2. Ensure Device Safety
While you secure the virtual environment, don’t forget to pay attention to physical security. Request all y0ur employees to safeguard their phones, laptops, tablets and other devices that they use to access the cloud from unauthorised users. If endpoint security isn’t ensured, anybody could log into one of your accounts by physically accessing either your phone or laptop meaning your business security is compromised.
You don’t want to lose your laptop or phone only to discover that whoever stole your device(s) now has access to all your personal information as well. Cloud storage solutions and applications now come with an additional layer of protection like an extra PIN or a code or face unlock.
For instance, Dropbox for both iOS and Android offers this add-on level of security, so lookout for similar features in other cloud storage apps you use for your business.
3. Carry Out Routine File and Folder Auditing
Perhaps the best feature of cloud storage, file and document sharing is super easy across your business network. This also means that your data could be exposed if someone was to get hold of those links. To avoid this, it’s important that you double-check who you share your files and folders with. Add expiry dates and passwords to your shares if possible.
It will be worth it to conduct routine audits of all the file and document shares that are active on your cloud account. For the most recent shares that you need to stay active, use the options that you have to make these shares read-only in your cloud storage.
If it’s absolutely necessary for the shared docs or files to be edited, you can change the settings and access accordingly. Google Drive is a cloud storage service where multiple users can access and edit a file at the same time.
4. Clear Out Your Deleted Files Folder
Many cloud storage services have a recycle bin to keep deleted files for a few days or weeks in case you change your mind and need to access it again. This is often extremely helpful as you would have some sort of backup in case someone tries to wipe off your account. That said, at times you might want to ensure that certain files containing sensitive business information are properly disposed off without any chance of recovery.
If you delete something that you most certainly do not want to get back and neither would you want anyone else to find, dig deep into whatever undeleted option the cloud service has and ensure that the particular file or folder is properly deleted from within your IT environment.
For instance, iCloud on the web has the ‘recently deleted’ option that you can click on to look at all the permanently wiped out files. A similar option exists on Google Drive as well.
5. Switch Account Alerts On
Most cloud computing solutions send account alerts across about important events like new device sign-ins. Ensure that these are switched on in your settings. You can also subscribe to alerts that occur outside of your cloud accounts. These include alerts in case new shares are created or if certain folders or files are removed. At the very least, you should be able to review and check what’s happening with your account and it will be worth it if you could do this often.
When using Google Drive on the web, you could click on the ‘My Drive’ option followed by the ‘Info’ button at the top right to take a look at the recent changes done in your account. Reviewing your activities will help you spot any suspicious ones meaning your cloud storage security will be on point always.
6. Activate Account Recovery Options
Your cloud storage account is only as well protected as the weakest link attached to it. This means that you need to keep your account recovery options as secure as your credentials. Check if your password reset email is set to an email address that you have complete control over. The way these settings appear may differ depending on the service you use.
Just ensure that you keep everything up to date. If you have security questions guarding your account, these should be something that can’t be easily figured out by someone you work with or someone who follows your social media accounts.
To Sum It Up
Cloud storage security should be a top priority for businesses as the majority of the workflow is now conducted in the digital landscape. It’s important to make the most of the available standard measures coupled with some intricate options to ensure end-to-end network security.
The cloud storage industry is rapidly growing which is exciting for businesses. Based on your requirements, you can choose from the many providers that best suit your business needs.
Whether you are a customised beer coaster printing company or a high-end web development agency, you can make the most of exceptional cloud storage solutions and security.
Safeguard your data and presence online by implementing the tips mentioned above as you add to the robustness of your cloud storage security!
Aishwarya is the Content Head at Beach Marketing and loves to write about SEO, the latest technological developments and green hack. When she’s not writing articles on technology, she’s busy exploring every nook and cranny of the world!