Following a recent Cloud hacking incident, many are left wondering if they’re vulnerable to a similar attack. Using Cloud storage and applications is all the rage but are they safe? In this article we’ll talk about the Cloud, its security, keeping your Cloud accounts secure and the steps you can take to do so.
The Cloud is the “physical” form of a process called Cloud Computing. In simple terms, Cloud Computing is the process of saving and accessing data on servers over the Internet rather than on local servers or a computer’s hard drive. So, the Cloud is the “physical” place where the information from Cloud computing is stored. This makes your files and software accessible anywhere with an Internet connection.
iCloud and its security
Apple has come under recently scrutiny after several celebrities’ personal files were allegedly hacked from their iCloud account. While Apple claims the attack was focused on specific individuals and was not due in part to poor security, they’ve decided to beef up their security alerting feature.
Their main focus is alerting owners of an iCloud account when someone attempts to change their account information, send data to a device that isn’t already registered to them or tries to access their iCloud account from an unrecognized device. Their hope is make iCloud account owners aware when their information is potentially being accessed by an outsider.
Two-factor authentication will also be widely implemented. Apple encourages users to set up authentication codes that get sent to their personal cell phones prior to logging into their iCloud account. This added layer of security makes it harder for an account to be hacked because it requires the hacker to also have access to your cell phone.
When it comes to iCloud, make sure you’re utilizing all the security features available to you. Create strong passwords, implement two-step authentication, register your devices to your iCloud account and really pay attention to the emails that you receive regarding your account.
Another thing to keep in mind about iCloud is that, depending on your settings, your files and photos may automatically save to the Cloud. To prevent files from saving to the Cloud, turn this feature off and periodically check your online iCloud account to see what’s actually saved on there.
These tips will strengthen your iCloud account and give you a shield if a potential attack were to happen to you.
Other Cloud services
iCloud isn’t the only Cloud storage provider fighting a reputation battle. Other Cloud providers are now under a magnifying glass, too.
However, most Cloud providers provide the same security features that iCloud does; two-factor verification and email alerts are two of the most common. But with more and more companies doing business in the Cloud with CRMs like Salesforce and file sharing programs like Google Drive, companies are looking for more ways to safe-guard their information.
Encrypting data is one of the ways that Cloud providers are adding more security to their service. Encryption turns data into a secret code. You have to have a password or another means of access in order to decrypt the information. This, obviously, adds an added step of security for businesses looking to safeguard their files.
Nothing saved on the Internet or in the Cloud is 100% safe for anyone but by following the best practices we’ve talked about above, you’ll make it a lot harder for an outsider to access your information. The point is to create many strong security levels and many hoops that a hack would have to go through in order to access your files.