Cloud Storage – The Importance of Safe Data Storage for Your Business

Charlotte Worth

Customer Success Manager

Small businesses should never underestimate the need for good data storage to safely backup vital information and to distribute data quickly when required. Thankfully there is a huge amount of inexpensive storage options available whether you’re a start-up, or in the market to expand your current storage solutions.

Cloud based storage options are very popular among many businesses. However, it’s worth looking at how this storage option affects the safety of your business.

A vital business requirement

There’s several reasons why data storage is a vital part of any business, and one of the biggest factors is keeping company information secure. Various external factors can easily wipe out data and it’s imperative that back-up solutions are in place to quickly retrieve files. It is also worth noting that the way your business stores information as determined by law.

It’s a legal requirement to ensure that all businesses follow the legal guidelines.

The Data Protection Act 1998 (DPA 1998) is an act of the United Kingdom (UK) Parliament defining the ways in which information about living people may be legally used and handled. The main intent is to protect individuals against misuse or abuse of information about them.

In summary, every business must comply with the eight principles of the Data Protection Act. The eight principles are that personal information must be:

· Fairly and lawfully processed;

· Processed for specified purposes;

· Adequate, relevant and not excessive;

· Accurate and, where necessary, kept up to date;

· Not kept for longer than is necessary;

· Processed in line with the rights of the individual;

· Kept secure; and

· Not transferred to countries outside the European Economic Area unless the information is adequately protected.

Non-compliance can result in an enforcement notice preventing your business from processing data, effectively preventing many businesses from operating, together with significant fines. Furthermore, the officers of your company, the managers and directors, can be held personally liable for non-compliance.

Did you know?

Individuals and businesses have a legal right under the Act to get a copy from you of the information you hold about them, this is known as the right of subject access.

With all the above in mind, what are your options?

There is no ‘one size fits all’ when it comes to business data storage, and some assessments should be taken before deciding on the right solutions to meet your needs. An assessment should include old and duplicated information, as well as non-business related data, and how long certain data should be retained. Other factors will include how quickly a business needs access to data, and the ability to share information easily with off-site employees. Also, the need to free up more office space via off-site servers and cloud storage solutions.

As your business grows so does your need for more sophisticated storage facilities, especially if you have employees who require access to large amounts of information in the office and off-site. For certain businesses, there may also be legal compliance requirements that mean certain historic information must be stored as part of data retention policies. There’s also the simple scenario of upgraded software in your business making higher demands on your hard-drives over the long-term. These factors plus the safety of your information, should be enough to make business owners aware of the importance of this tech requirement.

There is a wide range of data storage options available to suit every size of business from external hard-drives to online storage, which is excellent for backing up and sharing. However, it is vital to ensure that whichever option you choose complies with data protection

The Cloud

Cloud computing can be an efficient, cost-effective way to create that much-needed data storage. But how do you keep your data safe when it’s stored off your premises, on servers that you don’t own or even fully control?

The cloud option offers a cost-effective alternative to traditional forms of file storage. However, there is a security issue, can you trust cloud services to keep your data private. Furthermore, you should be concerned about how and where your data will be stored – particularly whether it will be held in a way that complies with laws such as the Data Protection Act.

What security features should businesses look for in cloud computing?
Choose service providers with experience and a track record in both the service they’re providing and cloud computing itself. It is vital to ensure you can trust the company providing the service. More than likely your business will be entrusting some sensitive data – like business emails, customer information or your accounting figures. To make sure this data is stored safely, look for a government-approved level of encryption, such as Advanced Encryption Standard 256 (AES-256). Companies such as Crugo, live or die by keeping their clients’ data safe. In fact, the precautions taken by Crugo are often much stronger than the security precautions taken by businesses themselves.

The European Commission’s Directive on Data Protection stipulates that servers handling information from UK small and medium businesses must be in the EU.

Although there are more stringent regulations for certain industries, like banking and finance, most companies can stay compliant by keeping their data inside the EU. However, many cloud services run from servers based in US.

The Crugo platform runs on a private cloud which is owned and maintained solely by Crugo. The Crugo cloud is hosted in a Tier 4, ISO 27001 certified datacentre located in the United Kingdom.

The Crugo Cloud comprises of enterprise grade Dell and Cisco hardware. All the Crugo servers run super-fast Solid State Drives “SSD” in a
RAID 5 configuration for optimal performance and redundancy. Each server also has dual power supply units “PSU” for added redundancy.

The Crugo platform provides users with a large amount of storage space where any type of file format can be uploaded and stored. All files that are uploaded onto the Crugo network are stored with a large-scale cloud storage provider. All this data is hosted and stored within the European Union.

When downloading content on the Crugo platform, all files are streamed from the cloud storage provider through the Crugo private cloud which authenticates each user request then passes the stream onto the end user if they have the correct authentication level. This means files are kept secure and will not be visible to users outside of your Crugo network, even if a direct link is shared.

Cloud computing services are easy to set up. Because you don’t have to manage the physical infrastructure, many hassles are eliminated.

If you’d like further information or would like us to recommend a solution to meet your needs, provide support and advice, then please get in contact.

Thanks for reading.