Life Cycle of Data in the Cloud
Migrating your data to the cloud is only 1/3 of the challenge. The other 1/3 is protecting your data in the cloud by ensuring no unauthorized copies exist. The last 1/3 is guaranteeing data destruction when you need to remove it from the cloud. For regulatory controlled industries, these aren’t merely challenges you need to solve but ones which are required in order to prove your company is (drum roll please) “in compliance.” These challenges are complicated by the fact that most cloud provider don’t provide data center tours, don’t allow penetration testing, and seem to resist transparency in their logs & processes. Yep, when it comes to THE CLOUD – you’re just supposed to believe it all happens via magic right? No! I say, trust but verify!
If you move it over the wire or pre-seed it on a removable drive, encrypt it! It’s bad enough when a major mail carrier loses your package (and they do!), but when that package has a removable hard disk in it with your entire customer database, you’re going to face some complications. Adding on, your information will sit in some virtual servers you were shipping to your cloud provider to pre-seed a backup or migrate a VM. If that happens, you’re in a world of hurt. This can result in regulatory fines, customer lawsuits, and negative publicity, which destroys your revenue, stock price, and value of your company as a whole. It will probably get you fired too.
If two-factor authentication isn’t being utilized along with AES256 bit encryption of data in-flight and at-rest by your Cloud Service Provider (CSP) by default, you should RUN. At dinCloud, we go a step further by filtering all traffic in/out of the Internet with an IP reputation filter (ThreatStop.com) and keeping a system level snapshot of the entire Cloud 1 x a day for 10 x days rolling allowing us to restore any VM, folder, file, or piece of data.
While there’s a nominal fee for a restore, the protection offered in all of the layers mentioned above is automatic and on by default when you create an account at www.dincloud.com and spin up resources — no matter how much you spend with us ($5/month or $5M/month). User level snapshots in other clouds don’t protect you from hackers or disgruntled employees (who will delete those from your account along with all your other resources). At dinCloud, you are impervious to such threats. What other cloud can make that claim?! None I know of.
Unless your Cloud Service Provider (CSP) is able to show you a Certificate of Destruction (CoD), then don’t believe their claims around life cycle management of hardware! Not sure? Ask! At dinCloud, we can show you every data center you’ve hosted in with us a Certificate of Destruction for the end-of-life / failed disks and other media leaving our facility. We use commercially recognized leaders in data destruction who physically destroy all media — not just magnetically erase it! dinCloud’s a bit old school? Overkill? You bet we are!
All clouds are wildly different. You need to ask the right questions. 1,000 lemmings can be wrong! Price is not the only consideration. Protecting your data is your responsibility. But take heart! There’s no need to be cloud wary, when you can now be cloud wise. dinCloud is like a 1,000 piece digital Lego set and a trusted partner to help you flexibly design the right scenario to meet any goal. So, adventure forth into the Cloud! 😉 Yours truly, Dr. Cloud.
Mike L. Chase, J.D., CCIE# 7226 (email@example.com) is the EVP/Chief Technology Officer for dinCloud, a cloud service provider and transformation company that helps businesses and public/private organizations rapidly migrate to the cloud through the hosting of servers, desktops, storage, and other cloud services via its strong channel base of VARs and MSPs. Visit dinCloud on LinkedIn: www.linkedin.com/company/dincloud.