With more emphasis on storing data on the cloud, it is easy to understand how and why more hacking attempts will take place online. In a way, the cloud can be pretty low-hanging fruit for a savvy hacker, making careless companies easy targets for devastating cyber-attacks. We have seen a huge jump in cyber security breaches by big-name businesses (and governments) during the past few years.  Here are a few things to keep in mind to make sure your company does not make the same mistakes.

What Hackers Are Looking For

Cloud infrastructure is an amazing and cost-saving way for many companies to store their data. Information such as customer data, system data, processes, financials, human resource information and so much more are all conveniently stored off-premise – helping companies save money, space and even manage their data overall. The problem is, however, that out of sight should not mean out of mind. Hackers and cyber criminals are actively seeking out this type of information on a large scale. Access to employee or client information (such as names, addresses and social security numbers) can lead to identity theft. Hacking of confidential business financial information or processes can result in cyber espionage, ransom or even the release of damaging trade secrets. With all that valuable information gathered in one (sometimes easily accessible) off-site location, criminals are looking at cloud infrastructure as the information mother-load and are working hard to gain access to confidential information.

The Vulnerabilities of Cloud Infrastructure

Just as they did when businesses were relying on physical data centers, cyber criminals are most attracted to hacking opportunities with a high data payoff. Hackers see that cloud infrastructure is a growing trending in data storage and are capitalizing on immature systems and security protocols. Many companies mistakenly assume that cloud providers manage all security needs. This isn’t always the case, and businesses need to take extra steps to make sure that the information they store online is protected from cyber attacks. Hackers are using increasingly advanced techniques to infiltrate the online networks of their targets. They often work in organized groups of cyber criminals with multiple members each bringing their own unique experience and skills to the talents of the group. Hackers are approaching their trade in a more systematic and organized manner that far outpaces the threat of lone, smash-and-grab attacks of the past.

What is an Appropriate Response?

While hackers are targeting cloud infrastructure in an increasingly aggressive way, don’t think that on-premises infrastructure is no longer at risk. This information simply shows that companies need to be thinking of digital security on every level, including the new ones. The key to protecting your data is developing the knowledge regarding how and where attackers can infiltrate your systems, and deploying the right security tools and investing in the right resources to keep your critical data protected in the long and short terms.

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