Business Solutions That Are More Secure in the Cloud

Kayla Matthews

One of the big decisions company owners must make is whether to use cloud-based or on-premises business solutions. Here are five solutions that are more secure when hosted in the cloud.

Content Storage

Google Drive, Dropbox, iCloud and OneDrive are some of the leading cloud-based business solutions. Indeed, these solutions allow people to store documents, photos, music files and similar content in the cloud. They also often have collaboration components, so a person with the correct credentials or a link could access information and work with their colleagues.

These types of cloud-based business solutions have several security-related advantages over keeping documents on-site and sharing them via file uploads after scanning the physical document. For example, cloud-based storage may encrypt data while at rest and in-transit. Additionally, it may require two-factor authentication (2FA) before a person can see the stored content. 

Also, Microsoft has a Red Team and Blue Team of security specialists that oversee their data centers associated with all Office 365 products, including OneDrive.

Anti-Virus Software

Locally installed anti-virus software typically requires users to manually update it after receiving a notification about a new version. Some software updates itself overnight. However, cloud-based anti-virus software is even more secure against the latest threats. This effective business solution gets near real-time updates within minutes, as soon as the cloud provider learns of the dangers. 

Microsoft carried out a study and found that frequent updates significantly reduce the chances of a computer becoming infected. The company’s research indicated that only 0.6% of computers with real-time updates had infections, but the rates increased to 2.2% for machines that got new virus definitions less frequently, and 2.4% of computers with expired software

Phone Systems

Businesses that are thinking about moving their phone systems to the cloud have numerous advantages to anticipate, ranging from improved scalability to a simplified setup. Indeed, from a security point of view, cloud phone systems are an excellent business solution that supports continuity. If severe weather or anything else affects a company’s headquarters, it can keep operating its phones as long as there is internet access. 

Also, cloud phone systems are hosted in various places. Therefore, if something happens at one data center, others can keep things running smoothly. This concept is called geographic redundancy, and it’s one of the advantages of many cloud-based services. 

Hard Drive Backups

Hard drive backups protect people from catastrophes like crashes and accidentally deleted files. Good businesses solutions can back up material with physical and cloud-based options. The ones existing in the cloud can offer superior protection against ransomware, however. 

For example, there are often ways to roll back to a previous version so people can quickly access files the way they looked before ransomware struck. Also, cloud providers generally manage backups remotely, which prevents customers from needing to buy products like USB drives to facilitate things. 

Using physical backup hardware is better than nothing. However, there are cases where cybercriminals infected connected drives, as well as the main hard drive. 

Cybercriminals that deal with ransomware capitalize on vulnerabilities. Not having files backed up is a massive shortcoming. Businesses also cannot assume they’re familiar with all the different kinds of ransomware that may affect them. In fact, research from McAfee found there was a 118% increase in new ransomware in the first quarter of 2019. The report also showed that 504 ransomware attacks happened every minute. 

Payroll Services

A report from ResearchAndMarkets valued the cloud-based payroll services market at $7.34 billion in 2018. The company also forecasts a 10.3% combined annual growth rate for the sector between 2019-2027. The benefit of increased security is not the only reason for this expected growth, but it’s likely a prominent factor.

For example, cloud-based business solutions often invest in the strongest encryption technology, far beyond what any on-premise business solutions likely have. Plus, when people use a cloud payroll interface, they have to enter a password to see the file containing their pay stub. Such an approach is much more secure than the traditional method of distributing paper copies. 

Weigh the Pros and Cons Before Moving to the Cloud

The five cloud-based business solutions on this list can help a company operate more securely than it would by sticking solely to on-premise business solutions.

However, it’s not necessarily the best option for every business case an enterprise faces. A company should learn about any positive and negative facets of a cloud-based business solution before choosing it.