In the current work environment, many employees in different types of organizations are working remotely. As a strange but exciting fact, 97.6% of remote employees want to work remotely for some time for the rest of their work life (Research). This includes using multiple devices to work from, which expands the threat landscape and allows malicious intrusion to compromise valuable business data. On the other side, there is a growing public cloud industry through which data is accessible via public endpoints.
This is where the deliberate switch to cloud hosting for data and applications comes into play to ensure security. Most renowned cloud hosting providers invest heavily in multiple security methods, data encryption on the cloud being one of them. In the current business landscape, cloud encryption has become a requirement for all businesses, irrespective of size or scale.
In the post, we will cover cloud encryption from various sides and angles.
What is Cloud Encryption?
Cloud encryption is the process of encoding data before being transferred to the cloud. It converts plaintext data with the help of algorithms into ciphertext that is not easy to read or understand. As a result, the encrypted data is protected from unauthorized access.
You can benefit from cloud encryption in preventing the loss of sensitive cloud data in case of a security breach. Think of it as an additional layer of security over your cloud-hosted business data. Even experts regard cloud encryption as a practical approach to ensure data security. Moreover, deciphering encrypted data is only possible with the correct key.
With cloud hosting becoming the mainstream for storing enterprise data and ensuring remote accessibility, combining cloud encryption can give you significant control over cloud security. Cloud solution providers who invest in data encryption as one of the cloud security measures will pass the encryption keys to you and your team (the authorized users) only. Then, you can transform the encrypted data back to the readable form with decryption.
Why Does It Matter in 2022 and Beyond?
Indeed, cloud encryption can help your organization boost data privacy and ensure regulatory compliance and remote work flexibility. Wondering if you need it too for your business? Here’s why it matters for this year and ahead:
Round-the-clock data protection
When you want the data to be hosted on the cloud, it is not like you need to secure it at night while keeping it loose during the day. Business data is exposed to varying degrees of risk, whether stored on a cloud or on-premise server. Cloud encryption ensures round-the-clock security for data in motion and at rest.
Insider threat mitigation
Data security breaches do not only happen from external elements. For example, even internal security risks can cause significant damage in a remote work environment with thin-stretched scrutiny and inefficient monitoring. Also, technical blunders are not always intentional. For instance, an employee who is not very tech-savvy can make blunders that leave your organization’s data at risk.
Cloud encryption certainly helps in such situations by shifting control of your data to an experienced cloud hosting provider.
Multiple device access protection
Employees are free to use whatever device they want when data and business applications are hosted on cloud servers, as allowed in the company policy. However, some of them can be less secure than others, and the transfer of data files from one device to another makes them vulnerable. This is what makes cloud encryption critical for data protection across devices.
Best Practices for Cloud Encryption Management in 2022
Data protection is essential for most organizations. As remote work continues to spread its wings in 2022, efficient methods are required to protect sensitive data. Given below are a few best practices to ensure strengthened security within and outside your organization:
Assess security requirements before cloud adoption
Before you even search for a cloud solution provider, you must identify business data that requires encryption and plan to prioritize databases that need more protection. This will help you select the right cloud provider with cloud encryption as a part of security measures.
Check the finer details of service quality before selecting a cloud provider.
Reading the Service Level Agreement (SLA) allows you to understand the details of the hosting plan offered by a cloud solution provider. You can also dig further to clarify when, where, and how your data will be stored. Think of SLA review as an integral part of cybersecurity.
Select a cloud provider offering comprehensive encryption
While some cloud hosting providers offer cloud encryption during data creation and transfer, others cover data in transit at the end-user level. Hence, you must ensure that the service provider you select offers complete encryption of data at rest and in transit.
The key takeaway
The proper knowledge about cloud encryption will be your strongest line of defense to secure cloud-hosted data. It could also be the difference between easy-to-target enterprise data and not worth the hassle.
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