SaaS applications present a convenient and cost-effective solution for many enterprises. Unlike on-premise systems, however, SaaS app come with additional challenges to the app’s security and the company’s data integrity.
In order to prevent potential security risks, it’s vital to learn how to protect your data during the migration to the cloud and subsequently maintain high security standards.
Evaluate the Potential Risks
Migrating to the cloud is a multi-stage process that involves numerous other aspects besides the safety of your data.
When it comes to security, the first step is to identify the potential risks associated with the data you need to transfer to a cloud platform. Without knowing exactly what is at stake, it’s impossible to choose a suitable service. As soon as you familiarize yourself with your assets, it will become easier to map them to potentially fitting SaaS applications.
Match the Chosen Service to Standardized Security Requirements
SaaS services work in compliance with laws and regulations in their respective fields. These control frameworks include PCI DSS, NIST SP 800-53, ISO/IEC 27002, and many others. Once you have narrowed down the list of possible solutions to choose from, pay special attention to the information security standards each platform officially maintains.
Determine Which Security Aspects Depend on Your Company and Take Control of Their Implementation
Many of the essential security mechanisms come together with the app itself. The provider needs to ensure the integrity of their platform as well as the data you are generating by using their service, and it’s important to understand where the third-party’s protocols end and your company takes charge.
Overall, the vital parts of a SaaS app’s security that a company controls include employee training, appropriate management, and various internal data security measures.
During a cyber attack, employees are the most vulnerable part of the system. Regular training and appropriate policies can help lower the risks and ensure one of your workers doesn’t become the point of corruption.
The most crucial points to consider regarding your employees in security include:
- Training. Threat awareness training is essential to keep your app secure. The majority of attacks begin on the non-technological level and rely on coercing the staff to give up passwords, information, or access to the application. Regular training will make your employees resistant to social engineering and phishing attempts.
- Policies and regulations. Make sure that your company has an exhaustive list of security policies regarding your employees’ operation of a SaaS service you are using. These can include mandatory two-step authentication and password creation rules, as well as how your workers are expected to handle the data within the application.
The management department plays a vital role in how your employees will treat the enforced security policies.
The most crucial points to consider regarding your managers in security include:
- Ensure compliance with your security mechanisms. Developing security protocols when moving to a SaaS app is half the job; the other one is to integrate these policies naturally into each of your employees’ routine. The management department should document the regulations and develop a control system to ensure compliance.
- Reward the focus on security. With such a critical aspect of your company’s success as cybersecurity, it’s easy to slip into forcing your employees into compliance without explaining fully why this issue is so important. By encouraging interest in security, managers can improve the overall morale and help workers get involved in making the SaaS service safer.
Securing Your Data
Although it’s necessary to choose a SaaS app provider that treats security with the utmost consideration, you can also follow several steps to fortify the system on the company’s side.
The most crucial points to consider regarding your internal security measures include:
- Encrypt the data.
- Avoid neglecting hardware security. Design your devices and storage spaces with consideration for possible tampering attempts.
- Instill different methods of protection, depending on the sensitivity of each data set.
- Schedule and perform routine security checks.
- Compose and enforce data retention policies for each SaaS app you’re planning to use.
- Enforce two-step authentication both for clients and employees.
- Design response strategies for different kinds of security breach emergencies. Train all employees on how to act if the application gets compromised.
How to Protect Your Data When Migrating to the Cloud: Recap
Migration to a SaaS service comes laced with security risks that you need to address to maintain the integrity of your company. The first step is to survey the cybersecurity regulations of possible SaaS providers and choose one that complies with official regulations relevant to your field and needs.
It’s also crucial to remember that, although the platform’s security lies largely on the vendor’s shoulders, it is your responsibility to ensure the best practices on your side. Train your employees in threat detection and handling, encrypt the data, secure the physical components of the system, and conduct regular testing to smooth out any bumps before someone gets a chance to exploit them.