Approximately 94% of businesses use the cloud, and it won’t be long before statistics show adoption at 100%. It’s hard to operate in today’s world without at least one cloud application to enable working from anywhere.
Most companies use several different cloud platforms, especially since the pandemic. Remote teams have now become the norm as companies and employees adjust to working both in the office and remotely.
83% of surveyed employers say the switch to remote work has been successful, and many plan to keep some form of telecommuting even after the pandemic has passed.
While using the cloud to enable remote and hybrid teams can reduce costs and promote better morale and higher productivity, it can also bring security risks if you’re not prepared.
In the last 18 months, 79% of companies have had at least one cloud account breach, and 43% have had at least 10 or more.
There’s no going backward when it comes to cloud technology, but companies can ensure their use of the cloud is completely secure by taking the right steps.
Ways You Can Fortify Your Cloud Security
Address Access Security
The number one cause of data breaches is now compromised credentials. This means that more data breaches happen by passwords being hacked, guessed, or stolen than any other type of attack.
One of the first steps to securing your cloud environment is to secure your user accounts. You should do this in a number of ways, as a layered strategy of several security tactics is always more secure than using only one tactic.
Here are some ways to ensure only those that are authorized can access your cloud accounts:
- Implement multi-factor authentication (MFA) on all accounts.
- Have employees use a business password manager to securely store passwords.
- Configure security in applications to reject the use of weak passwords.
- Use contextual MFA tools that can allow additional challenges based on things like device location and time of day.
Have Cloud Security Settings Professionally Configured
Many companies don’t know that they need to configure the security settings in tools like Microsoft 365, Salesforce, Slack, and other SaaS tools. The defaults are not usually set to the highest protection levels, nor are they going to be customized for your organization’s needs.
Misconfiguration of security settings was responsible for over 39% of web application breaches in 2020.
Many cloud tools have strong security protections, but they need to be configured. It’s best to have these set up by someone that knows what they’re doing and that can quickly provide a custom security profile to protect your business data.
Address Network Security
How your remote team connects to the internet can either decrease or increase the risk of a breach.
Do they connect through an encrypted VPN connection? Or do they use public Wi-Fi without any protection at all? Does their work device share a network with less secure devices, like a teenager’s gaming laptop or a smart doorbell camera?
Network security looks a bit different when your network extends to the homes of remote employees. Here are some safeguards you can put in to place to better protect data being transmitted through employee home networks:
- Have employees use a business VPN application.
- Teach your team how to add a guest network to their routers and use that only for work devices.
- Use a cloud access security broker tool to monitor for suspicious logins.
Make Sure Devices Are Properly Managed & Secured
Hackers can often breach a device and then through that device easily get into company cloud accounts. Just think about how many work apps you’re logged into right now on your smartphone.
Most people do not need to continually log into business email or various business apps because of persistent sign-ins that keep them logged in.
All a criminal needs to do is plant malware on a device that allows them to access the desktop or main screen. They can then get into any connected accounts without needing to know the password at all. With access to email or text messages on a phone, the attacker could even change the password to the account.
It’s important that all employee devices being used for business – whether in an office or at home – are properly protected with security best practices. This includes managed services such as:
- Device monitoring
- Managed Antivirus/anti-malware
- Email filtering for spam/phishing
- Automated installation of updates
- DNS filtering to block malicious websites
- Device firewalls to stop unauthorized system changes
Get Help Properly Securing Your Cloud Infrastructure
Remote teams can be both secure and productive with the right technology partner! Rocky Knoll Technologies can help your Charlotte area business with a comprehensive cloud security strategy that has all your bases covered.
Schedule a consultation by calling 704.594.7292 or reach us online.