SALT LAKE CITY — While storing data in "the cloud" can make life easier, is it safe to place all your proverbial eggs in one digital basket?
Recent high-profile security breaches at some of the nation’s top companies have made consumers nervous about their information, and with good reason. A compromised system can cost a business millions in repair, lost sales, business disruption, fines and legal fees.
But experts say the benefits of using cloud technology still outweigh the concerns.
“While cloud computing is not without its risks, the truth remains that these risks are definitely manageable with some effort taken on the part of the company involved," tech advice site Lifewire reports. "Once the issues are resolved, the rest of the process should go on smoothly, thereby providing immense benefits for the company.”
Compensating for human error is an ongoing battle for most companies, but here are three reasons why the cloud is still a smart and secure option for your data:
1. Data is stored in a remote location
We may feel safe and secure in our homes or offices, but that doesn’t always mean our data will meet the same fate. Fires, floods, earthquakes, power surges, theft or even a 32-ounce diet soda can destroy data on an electronic device.
“Not long ago, a crashed computer system could bring a company to its knees,” said Ryan Westwood, CEO of local cloud computing company Simplus. “Many companies tallied hundreds of thousands of dollars in lost productivity as a result of a fried server or compromised hard drive.”
Although storing your data in the cloud can't prevent your computer system from crashing, using a cloud-based remote storage system does eliminate the risk of losing valuable information if your physical server malfunctions. Instead, your information is stored in a format that is easily accessible and not prone to loss.
2. Data can be protected with controlled access
Picture this: an unsuspecting and reclusive IT worker stumbles upon a secret file packed with highly-sensitive secrets that will change the world. It is up to her and a trusty companion to bring about justice and save the nation.
While that scenario makes for a great movie plot, it can be risky if an employee finds private information (whether intentionally or not). A customized cloud computing system can grant access to only those who need it.
Work with a computing consultant to ensure your system is designed with secured layering, updated protection and controlled access.
3. Data benefits from improved filing, storage and security capabilities
Some of today’s most innovative computing services are based in the cloud.
FileShadow, for example, is a local cloud file assurance service based on the IBM Cloud that organizes data created on platforms like Adobe Creative Cloud, Dropbox, Google, OneDrive and others. It enables users to easily access files, and a consolidated storage system means data is secured and protected by FileShadow’s file archiving protection service.
When security is the name of a company’s game, providing the most innovative protection possible becomes a top priority. FileShadow’s recent partnership with Drobo storage solutions creates an unprecedented combination of data protection, expandability and ease of use.
“With this support, we can deliver complete on-site and cloud file protection for creative professionals, prosumers and the (small- and medium-sized business) market,” said FileShadow CEO Tyrone Pike.
As consumers and companies embrace improved business efficiencies, AI, virtual reality and easier access to data, they also should notice these innovations are supported by the cloud.
It seems cloud technology is here to stay, and by understanding its potential and the precautions necessary to operate within it, having your head in the clouds may not be so bad after all.
Amy Osmond Cook, Ph.D., is a board member of the Association of Skilled Nursing Providers and Osmond Marketing. She is a regular contributor to Entrepreneur, Forbes, Huffington Post and other publications.