As a business grows their data storage needs grow. Backups of business information for disaster recovery are essential and, storage of backups off site can be challenging for small business. With cloud computing, organizations can monitor current needs and make on-the-fly adjustments to increase or decrease capacity, accommodating spikes in demand without paying for unused capacity during slower times. Cloud computing represents system reliability, especially for small businesses with aging computers and data stored on hard drives. As it doesn't mean that security and reliability can be taken for granted, it is necessary to a small business in the company in the cloud with careful due diligence and planning. ??? Identify and Assign Value to Assets Assets could be include applications, data, including private customer information; or infrastructure such as hosted servers and operating systems.
While not all cloud providers are the same, it is best to assign a value to your assets, to decide the level of security that is necessary. ??? Assess Your Liabilities One of the biggest cloud security concerns is the risk of breaches resulting in loss or theft of sensitive private data. If the information leaked is proprietary only to your company, liability is not a concern. But it is important to know where responsibility lies if information goes missing. ??? Compliance Requirements In certain industries like banking and healthcare, there are specific regulations for the handling of electronic data. In some cases there may be restrictions to use cloud services as there may be a requirement to store data within the borders of your own country. ??? Inquire About Security and Reliability Certifications By considering only those providers with documented, verifiably sound security practices may eliminate some of the need to probe deeper. ??? Negotiate Service Levels and Exit Strategies Security in the cloud is not just about protecting data. It's also about ensuring your own business continuity.
Your ongoing operations may depend on being able to access a cloud service, and it is therefore important to understand the service levels and exit strategies It is also important to know about the types and levels of encryption the provider can offer to ensure that even if data is leaked it cannot be read. It is also prudent to know about the provider's business continuity provisions and what happens if its main data center is destroyed. Small businesses must know about the security monitoring and auditing processes, and what kind of reporting the provider does. Look for effective cloud computing services that can take all the worry out of maintaining the technology of a small business.