How Encryption Works in Cloud Computingby QArea Expert on September 12, 2014
Cloud, as a flowing intangible balloon with different kinds of information, has been celebrated in the last few years as a real pivotal point in the data storing and sharing process. The cloud offers a wide range of new possibilities that can improve business communication and work in general, as well as everyday computer experience of ordinary people. Since the data on the cloud can be accessed from any Internet-provided spot in the world, it is obvious that people do not have to carry their flash drives or external disks with them, but simply log into their cloud account and have easy access all the data they need. No matter how convenient and fabulous this might sound, there must be a drawback or, better to say, a threat to that feature. Namely, every item of content uploaded to the cloud must be appropriately encrypted, to make sure it is safe from hackers’ attacks.
Age of encryption
As the IT world is steaming forward, IT criminals are following suit, as well. Every new safety feature is usually breached the same day when released. BBC claims that 2014 is definitely the year of encryption. In the context of the last year espionage leaks and confidential documents that have seen the light of day recently, the cloud should be strictly supervised and controlled by providers. Indeed, many providers do offer special packages of protection and encryption. Depending on the company’s status and place in the market, CEOs opt for particular packages. Of course, nobody wants their data seen by unauthorized parties, but there are also differences in the approach of different companies. Larger companies play a more important role on the market, so their protection needs to be updated and renewed on the daily basis, either by their cloud services of by their own protection and encryption team.
Your encryption is your care
Although cloud providers always claim that keeping the content safe is their duty, things are not always that simple. First of all, you always have to read all the terms and conditions in the contract that you are going to sign. There are often numerous disclaimers and you have to be aware of the advantages and disadvantages when preparing yourself to establish cooperation with a cloud provider. You need to know that your encryption must be your care. If you do not make sure that your part of the cloud is protected, nobody else will do that.
When the providers take care of the encryption process, it is called provider-side cloud encryption. On the other hand, the encryption process and method that is user-oriented is called client-side cloud encryption. Although this more personalized approach demands a little bit more investment, it increases the safety level and keeps the cloud data maximally protected.
Keys to high-profile security
When it comes to cloud encryption, the essence of good protection is the key/password care. Ordinary Internet users make a password for their profiles on social networks or to access their e-mail accounts and use it for months or years. In terms of cloud encryption, regular key maintenance and safe storage of old and new keys are definitely soft spots of the cloud encryption system. Keys have the role of turning the data they protect unreadable to someone who does not have the appropriate key. No matter who is in charge of keeping the key(s), whether it is the provider or the company who has data on the cloud, there must be strict rules and a clear system in the key securing process. If encryption keys come into wrong hands, the content stored on the cloud is most likely to be stolen or erased.