Many businesses are skeptical of cloud based solutions. They hear stories of large cloud based hacks and conclude that keeping their data on-premise is better.
It’s true that there have been major news stories of some very large cloud hacks involving Microsoft (2010), Dropbox and LinkedIn (2012), Yahoo (2013), and Apple ICloud and Home Depot (2014).
So are cloud based solutions really safer?
Yes. To illustrate why, let’s think of a common everyday example:
Imagine that you’re sitting at home looking out on the street. You’re not particularly close to any of your neighbours but you notice someone you’ve never seen before entering a house down the street. What do you do?
Probably nothing. Maybe they’re a house guest, or a friend coming for a visit. Or perhaps their a contractor coming to estimate some home repair. You are likely to go back to your business and not pay any further attention.
Now imagine if you see this same person going down the street trying every door in your neighbourhood. This is more suspicious. You are likely to call the police, or take a picture of the person or record the license plate of their car.
Why would we be aroused to action in the second case but not the first? It is because we have more data points to compare. A single house (or a single attack) tends to be discounted. Multiple data points of unusual behaviour arouses concern.
The firewall supplied by your internet provider for your home or small office is a very simple appliance. It only pays attention to the current traffic and it doesn’t learn from past attempts by hackers, nor is it able to predict future patterns.
Cloud providers have many more data points from which they can identify potential hackers—and they can quickly apply rules to firewalls to close down these patterns. This mean that the hacker’s pattern is more likely to be identified stopped before they can break into the third, fourth or fifth house—or possibly your house–on the street.
Large cloud providers like Google spend a lot of time and money on protecting the assets of their clients—it is their bread and butter. Their Advanced Threat Protection (ATP) technology make the small D-Link or Actiontec routers provided by our cable or telco internet providers pale in comparison. This is one reason why those large companies decided to trust their data to the cloud in the first place.
Even if you decide to keep your data on-premise, there are much better firewalls that we can use to protect your data than the “freebie” coughed up by your internet provider. These advanced firewalls use “Unified Threat Management” (UTM) to find the same patterns that cloud providers are looking for.
If you have data that your business depends upon, Atlas can help you find a solution and budget that meets your needs. Let us know how we can help.