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Do I Need to Worry about Security with a Cloud-based Solution?

No matter what technology you use, security should always be top of mind.  Often there is a belief that on-premises software is more secure than cloud-based software.  We’ve all read and heard stories of online services being hacked and critical data being lost.

However, on-premises software is just as easily compromised.  Information stored on laptops is at risk if the laptop is lost or stolen.  Critical data stored on flash drives that are easily misplaced are at risk as well.  We’ve heard of an instance where a thief broke the window of a business and a server with employee payroll information was among the items stolen.

There are a number of layers to security.  There is the security built into the software itself (who is assigned access to various applications and reports).  There is the process of developing security measures and best practices for your organization and adoption of the policy by employees (handling of confidential information, password protocols, etc.).  And there is the security of where the application server is housed.

Regarding passwords, a best practice to adopt is requiring “strong” passwords.  A strong password is complex.  It has at least 8 characters, a combination of upper and lower case letters, numbers, and special characters if possible.  A complex password is difficult to guess or crack.

The security built into the software is also important.  There are a number of ways this is handled.  During the setup of the software, you can determine by user who has access to applications and reports.  There are also other security features.  For example, Avectra requires periodic password changes.

When it comes to the security of location, it’s hard to do any better than the data centers used by cloud computing software publishers.  They have the best security money can buy because economies of scale allow them to spread the cost of that security across thousands and thousands of tenants (customers).

But perhaps the most important security measure you can take is to develop internal security procedures.  Then invest the time in educating all systems users in the process and discuss with them the importance of adhering to the process.  Most people don’t set out to compromise critical data – it usually happens as a result of carelessness or naiveté.

We’re happy to answer other questions you may have about system security, just let us know.

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