Recently GoDaddy, one of the world’s largest internet service companies, suffered from a major outage that sent ripple effects across the web. While it appears the technical difficulties were not a result of hacking as previously reported, the events that transpired sent the internet into a frenzy as literally millions of websites were affected with the owners were left waiting. Because of the centralized nature of internet services today, there’s a real concern with safety and security in the cloud which begs the question- is your data safe?
Cloud computing has faced a stigma of uncertainly since its inception. People are generally uncomfortable with the idea of all of their information floating around cyberspace in “secure” channels. Anyone who has had their email hacked or identity stolen knows this all too well. With business, the apparent risks are compounded because now many companies are dependent on software-as-a-service (saas) applications, infrastructure, email, web hosting and more. One crack in the foundation can lead to calamity as hackers could access private data, trade secrets and critical resources with malicious intent, as seen in a not-too-distant breach with the cloud service Dropbox. This unfortunate event was not the first digital security breach, and it certainly won’t be the last. For your safety and security, does that mean you should unplug from the cloud? I’d say absolutely not.
In today’s global economy, the ability to scale a business quickly is paramount to success. Nearly every business in the world can benefit from cloud services and reap the rewards that weren’t even available ten years ago. Though there are certainly risks, the risk of inaction is greater as hardware is more difficult and expensive to scale. One must remember that the internet is evolving with the world alongside it. Cloud computing is still in its early stages but it’s clear that it is here to stay.
Unless you’re willing to turn back the clock and stop embracing innovation all together, there are steps you can take to protect your data and that of your company. John Sutter recently wrote on CNN a solid list of tips that include backing up data both in the cloud and in hardware, regularly changing passwords and not reusing them, and utilizing the latest verification procedures for email and social media. Though none of these tips can make you invincible, they do provide much-needed protection in the fight against cybercrime. But rest assured, through centralizing data in the cloud, you’re actually making it much safer by tying up the loose ends and trusting in a business partner that does security for a living.