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Securing cloud infrastructure against data management risks

Enterprise cloud architectures will need to be both secure and customizable for new types of workflows.

Some organizations have kept their distance from the cloud because of security concerns, but the real issue may be with finding the right cloud storage providers. Ideally, cloud services companies handle data with precision, ensuring that clients can meet compliance obligations and access data as needed.

Under these circumstances, keeping assets in the cloud may be safer than hosting them on-premises, where they are vulnerable to network outages or mishandling by employees. Many workers may turn to consumer cloud services in order to upload, store and access files from anywhere, if only because their employers have not created a clear, secure framework for storing data.

"[Usage of consumer cloud services] is a very big problem for companies that have staff using tablets and phones for business – especially if they are storing sensitive information or data that is subject to regulatory requirements," Enterprise Strategy Group senior analyst Terri McClure told InfoStor.

To get a grip on bring-your-own-device initiatives, companies can explore enterprise cloud storage setups that are custom-built for business needs and security requirements. These architectures serve critical needs, such as retaining large quantities of data that can be turned into analytics.

More specifically, enterprise file sharing applications offer a secure way to access company information across devices and move files between local and cloud-based storage. Technical solutions will be key to solving the issue of consumer storage since educational initiatives about risk do not always succeed.

In a piece for TechTarget, Dan Sullivan examined some of the possible responses to employees using cloud services on their own. Authentication and authorization policies will be critical to controlling access. Similarly, organizations will need cloud infrastructure that permits easy management of where data is stored, so that it is not accessible to departed employees or vulnerable to cyberattack.