It seems that every discussion of business technology and data security leads to privacy issues, and for good reason. Think about this incredible fact: despite the limited number of hackers in the world, almost half of all adults in America have been hacked. It’s no longer a question of “if” but instead “when.”
But technology in the business world has had some success catching up to hackers to help defend against them. In the past, the major issues with security resulted from industries being forced to play catch up with hackers. After all, businesses have to focus on what they’re good at and what makes them money, rather than cyber security.
For the first time in business history, one industry has truly come out ahead of hackers, mainly because they had to. That industry is cloud computing.
Cloud computing, as you may know, allows data to be managed, processed and stored on a series of remote servers hosted on the internet, rather than in your office or on your personal computer. With businesses’ critical data residing in the cloud rather than behind firewalls and physically in an office, it would seem to be easier for a hacker to access, but it is in fact harder — thanks to advances in remote data security.
But that reality has taken time to prove to the business community. In 2010, CNN published an article discussing the incredible fears and what they would have led us all to believe was an ominous future associated with the cloud. “There are many motivations for why an individual or a company would want to engage in cloud computing,” said Thomas Parenty, managing director of Parenty Consulting, a Hong Kong-based information security consulting firm. “None of them have to do with enhanced security.”
More businesses and individuals were tapping into cloud power because of economics and convenience, despite a lack of full confidence in its security. I.T. security companies heeded these warnings and took action. By 2014, cloud computing was boasting advanced security that had become extremely difficult to crack. At the time, Infoworld reported some “real wins” in the cloud, including advances with security defaults, drive encryption, secure sockets layer (SSL) by default, multiple factor authentication and UEFI (Unified Extensible Firmware Interface).
Three years have passed, and more of the world’s businesses have shifted to the cloud because the security has become exponentially more sophisticated.
Of course, every few months there is a rash of celebrity hacks with very personal pictures and videos leaked from someone’s personal cloud to everyone online. Those very publicized breaches remind us that data security is strongest in equal parts of preparation and reaction. We learn that content like photos is usually stored in an area that isn’t quite as secure as business and financial data…until we want it to be and take steps to better protect it. We also see that each each of those hacks has led to a correction for even tighter security, not only for photos but for everything stored in the cloud. For any unexpected breach in the cloud, security experts are there to rebuild and reinforce it to be stronger than ever before.
Cloud computing got a bad rap when it started, but its security measures were top-notch even then. And with every leak or break that has occurred, the cloud has rebounded and moved forward even stronger. With a more educated market and further improvements, the cloud is now recognized as one of the most fortified places to store and operate your business, and it continues to grow stronger by the day because the of the I.T. community’s ongoing commitment to apply it more effectively and stay ahead of new threats.