How to Ensure Effective Cloud Compliance
Let’s agree to one thing, clouds are amazing, and not just the white fluffy ones made of water vapor. Cloud computing has helped reduce IT costs, provide great scalability, improved collaboration abilities and disaster recovery and given us access to automatic updates. It also offers great flexibility, allowing people to access data from any place and at any time. This has been of great help during the COVID-19 pandemic, enabling people to efficiently and securely work from home. Something that wouldn’t have been possible a few decades ago.
All these benefits have helped push the global cloud computing market to $371.4 billion in 2020, according to a report by MarketsandMarkets. But some organizations still hesitate to adopt a cloud first strategy, due to compliance issues. If you too have such concerns, here’s how you can ensure effective compliance.
Know the Compliance Offered by Your Provider
Picking the right cloud service provider can make compliance a lot easier. Their team will handle all the audits, while you gain access to their compliance infrastructure. But not every cloud provider might provide the compliance you need. So, before selecting your provider, ask what compliances they offer.
For instance, if you belong to the healthcare industry, you need a provider that offers Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) compliance. The best way to ensure HIPAA compliance is to properly encrypt and protect the data in case of any security breach, according to experts at GOBI Technologies. Similarly, financial institutions should look for providers that offer compliance with the Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act (GLBA).
Know Where Data is Stored
You should always know in which part of the world your data is being stored. In case there is an audit, you would need to provide information regarding the exact location of the data center and what protection measures are being used to secure the stored data. Sensitive data often needs to be stored in the country of origin. Plus, data privacy and management regulations can vary from country to country.
Data security is an important part of compliance. And, when it comes to security, access control is vital. In fact, 74% of the data breaches are a result of poor access management, according to a survey by Centrify. To maintain better access control:
· Ensure that your employees have access to only the data they need.
· Use need-based access, which allows employees access to certain resources for a fixed period for time.
· Enable multi-factor authentication and privileged identity management. This makes breaches highly improbable. For login, ensure that the user not only needs to enter their username and password, but also provide another authentication. This could be a verification code on their email or a phone-based text message.
· Regularly perform audits to ensure that there are only valid users in the system.
Encrypt the Data
Encryption ensures that your sensitive data is secure from attacks or compromised conditions. Encryption ensures that your data cannot be tampered with, even if the access credential get into the wrong hands. In addition, this is vital for ensuring compliance with several regulations. The best strategy is to encrypt the data before moving it to the cloud.
Apart from these, you should also determine which data to keep on the cloud. For highly sensitive data, on-premise solutions can be suitable. For the rest, the cloud is a great option.