Long gone are the days where individuals and businesses had to store everything on small hard drives. Today, cloud storage allows people and businesses to store documents, photos, videos, and other media without using hard drive space.
Cloud storage is especially useful for businesses, where documents can be shared and accessed almost instantaneously from anywhere. However, there are a few issues concerning cloud storage, namely security.
Dangers Affecting Cloud Storage
Cloud storage is no stranger to the concept of data breaches, where troves of information are leaked and/or stolen. Take the 2014 iCloud incident, for instance, where hundreds of explicit photos of various celebrities were leaked online.
Data breaches can happen at any time. Even the most secure cloud storage companies will be at risk of causing a data breach; all it takes is one slip-up.
All it takes for someone to come in and steal your data is account access. In other words, if the account(s) you use to access your cloud storage isn’t secured with strong passwords and two-factor authentication (discussed later), then it is at risk of being hacked.
Take the iCloud breach mentioned above; the only reason the breach took place was that an employee’s account had its password compromised. Nevertheless, proper account security is vital in securing cloud storage.
4 Ways to Secure Your Device
1. Enable Two-Factor Authentication
The best way to secure your accounts is via two-factor authentication. For those out of the loop, two-factor authentication—known otherwise as 2FA—validates the identity of the person logging into an account by requesting they enter a code sent to them in either a text message or an email.
As long as a hacker doesn’t have access to either of those, your account is practically impenetrable.
2. Download a VPN
Using cloud storage means constantly transferring data to a server owned by Google, Apple, etc. This continuous data transfer means causing a lot of activity on a network. For example, if a cybercriminal happens to be snooping on said network, they may try to steal the data you are transferring.
To avoid this, you can use a VPN service. With a Virtual Private Network (VPN), your data will remain encrypted on any network, preventing any of it from being hacked or stolen.
3. Train Employees on Proper Cybersecurity Awareness
Suppose your use of cloud storage is for business, and you share cloud access with an organization. In that case, it is in your best interest to teach employees and coworkers about proper cybersecurity awareness.
Doing so will prevent user error from causing an organization-wide data breach. Unfortunately, it’s happened many times, and no doubt it will continue to happen. Teaching employees proper cybersecurity etiquette, however, will make sure your organization isn’t continuing the trend.
4. Vet Your Cloud Storage Provider
Not all cloud storage providers are built the same way. Some providers do their utmost to ensure every user can rest easy, knowing their data is secure. Others may not be so proactive for their customers and take a “laxer” approach to security.
All it takes is one security slip-up to cause a service-wide data breach. So when searching for a cloud storage provider, go over the security policies of each one and go with the one that seems the most legitimate.
Gone are the days of having to store every document and photo onto your hard drive; with cloud storage, you can save some space for your work or games. However, there are issues with cloud storage, the most major of said problems being security. Rest assured, though—with a few simple steps, you can secure your device, and therefore, your cloud storage!