Cloud Computing: How to Protect Your Data

Kulani Baloyi / Apr 18, 2024

8 min read

Guide for securing your information when using cloud storage services

Cloud computing offers a wealth of benefits, from increased storage capacity to flexible accessibility. However, entrusting your data to a third-party provider can raise concerns. Here's how to ensure your information remains secure in the cloud:

Fortress with Encryption

Double the Defense: Encrypt your data both on your device and in the cloud. This adds a crucial layer of protection, rendering data unreadable without a decryption key. Even if a breach occurs, your information remains scrambled.

Access Controls: A Gatekeeper for Users

Least Privilege(RBAC): Implement a policy of "least privilege." Grant users access only to the specific data they require for their tasks as well as permissions to each user individual, group or by role. This minimizes the potential damage if credentials are compromised. Multifactor Marvel: Go beyond passwords. Enforce multi-factor authentication (MFA) which requires a combination of factors, like a code from your phone, for login. This significantly reduces the risk of unauthorized access.

Choosing the Right Cloud Provider: Due Diligence is Key

Security Track Record: Research potential cloud providers. Look for a company with a strong track record of data security and proven experience in protecting sensitive information. e.g. AWS, AZURE and GCP Compliance Counts: Ensure the provider adheres to relevant industry regulations and data privacy laws. This provides peace of mind knowing your data is handled according to strict protocols.

Your Responsibility: Vigilance is Key

Password Power: Create strong, unique passwords for your cloud accounts. Avoid using personal details or easily guessable phrases. Consider a password manager to generate and store complex passwords securely.


Beware the Click: Phishing scams can target cloud users . Be cautious of emails or links requesting login credentials. Never share such information unless you're certain of the sender's legitimacy.

Data Backups: A Safety Net

Plan for the Unexpected: Regularly back up your cloud data to a separate location. This safeguards your information in case of accidental deletion, technical issues, or even a service outage.

Replication: Have multiple versions of your data stored in different regions. You will have access to the latest version of your data and potentially previous versions. In the event data becomes corrupt or whole region fails you have a back-up

Cryptography: Decryption and Encryption

How Does Encryption Work?

Generally there are two steps. Encryption is the process of converting plain text into code or cypher text, decryption is the reverse.

It makes it unreadable and therfore useless to anyone without the decryption key. Try using Caeser Cipher method

Why Encryption Matters?

At a high level businesses have 3 powerful tools to keep both users and data out of the wrong hands. These are:

Symmetric encryption uses the same key for encryption and decryption, its fast and easy provided the key stays SECRET! The strenth of the key lies in its length and randomness in creating it and how easy it is to deconstruct

Asymmetric encryption uses two different keys for encryption and decryption. The encryption i.e Public key is availabe to all while the decryption key stays private, as a result it takes longer but is considered more secure

Hashing and salting passwords in database

Encryption at rest

Hashing data mathamatically scrambles the data making it difficult to reverse engineer. You can use a powerful time tested algorithm like bcrypy.

Hashed passwords may still be suseptible to brute forced attacks, thats where salting comes in, it adds a unique value at the end of your password before hashing

Bcrypt hashes and salts passwords in a way that slows down brute force attacks even as computing power increases

const bcrypt = require ('bcrypt')
const saltRounds = 10
var password = "Fkdj^45ci@Jad"
bcrypt.genSalt(saltRounds, function(err, salt) {
  // returns salt
bcrypt.genSalt(saltRounds, function(err, salt) {
  bcrypt.hash(password, salt, function(err, hash) {
   //returns hash 
   //e.g. this is a hash for hello:  
   //Store hash in database here

By following these steps, you can leverage the power of cloud computing with confidence. Remember, cloud security is a shared responsibility. Choose a reputable provider, implement robust security measures, and stay vigilant to protect your valuable data.


This documentation is still being written. Please check back later.

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