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Security Concerns in the Cloud

New methods of data storage have been introduced in the past decade, and as the world of information technology moves forward, advanced security measures are being taken to ensure the protection of user identities and data. Cloud Storage in particular is being scrutinized for its security dependability.

Cloud Storage

Cloud Storage: What Is It?

Cloud storage is a method of storing files on a third-party remote server, making them available anywhere with Internet access. Files can be accessed, edited, and shared through your own equipment without utilizing your own storage space. These third-party hosting companies control expansive data centers, charging consumers for file storage space in the "cloud." Cloud storage can be retrieved through a cloud storage gateway, a web-based user interface, or a web service application programming interface (API) and companies have the option of choosing onsite or offsite cloud storage, or both.

Dropbox, a popular cloud storage company, has over 100 million users, offering 2GB of storage space for free. Box and Google Drive, other storage alternatives, give users 5GB.

Security Concerns

As online hackers'’ abilities progress, the security of the cloud is being questioned. A recent survey published by the technical support firm FixYa shows that the leading fears of cloud storage use are the service’s security, file syncing, limitation of storage and missing files. Forty percent of Dropbox users surveyed reported security concerns with cloud storage, and rightfully so. In 2011, a breach in security allowed access without a password, and in 2012, a series of spam emails were sent to Dropbox users.

The main safety concerns are dependability and security, and the vulnerability of remotely-stored information is growing. Finding an electronic loophole to gain entry to data is a possibility, or there’'s also the chance that an unhappy employee could change or terminate data using his own authentication. Reliability is just as crucial as security; an unsound cloud storage system is a liability, to both the cloud storage company and its users.

The Safety of the Cloud

Forrester Research forecasts a huge growth in the public cloud business, from $40 billion today to $160 billion by 2020, and as the market grows, the question is: what measures can be taken to assure the security of cloud storage? Many credible authorities suggest cloud storage safety concerns are inflated, that the fears are exaggerated beyond reason.

Cloud storage companies are utilizing three critical security standards to protect data:

  • Encryption - Method of converting a message of regular text into encoded text, by means of an algorithm, thus lessening the probability that an outside party would be able to convert it into comprehensible text.
  • Authentication -– The practice of determining whether someone or something is what or who it is declaring to be, most commonly accomplished through the use of passwords. It can also include a signature identifier, a user identifier, and a signature.
  • Authorization - The practice of allowing or denying access to a network source, which permits the user the ability to use various resources based on his identity.

Discover More

Business demand for specialized knowledge in a growing digital world will continue to expand as new technology security concerns arise. Lewis University’s online M.S. in Computer Science with a concentration in Cyber Security teaches students how to identify cyber threats, design combative software systems against an attack and investigate the aftermath using digital forensics tools. To learn more about the master’s degree call (866) 967-7046 to speak with a Graduate Admissions Counselor or request for more information.