Cloud data migration

A guide to data privacy and cloud migration

Over the last couple of years, the cloud has become an essential enterprise tool for modern businesses. All evidence points to a growing cloud adoption trend from increasing cloud spending and cloud workloads to prioritizing cloud expansion. More entrepreneurs quickly realize that cloud migration saves money, hones business agility, and drives innovation.

Although cloud migration presents several cost and IT efficiency benefits, it also introduces serious data security risks. An excellent example of this is the recent mass migration to cloud computing following the COVID-19 pandemic. In a recent survey, 60 percent of cloud users said they experienced an attack in 2020, partly because they overlooked security when frantically moving to the cloud.

Don’t get it wrong; the cloud infrastructure is secure enough to handle data privacy and safety. It’s only that cloud users are responsible for their data’s security. Most cloud breaches result from user-based security misconfigurations.

Since cloud migration is such a critical security tipping point, here are a few pointers to guide you through this process.

Review your existing data estate

All enterprise data is not created equally, and these distinctions are important in a cloud environment. Unlike most on-prem data centers, different cloud storage solutions are specially designed for particular types of data.

Gain complete visibility into your entire data estate when planning a massive data migration. Moving to the cloud requires a clear understanding of the nature and type of the available data in terms of size, capacity, uses sensitivity levels, and associated risks.

Depending on your business model, you might have several data types, such as transactional, analytical, master, and archived data. Each type may require unique security and privacy considerations when porting to the cloud.

Understand compliance requirements

Before cleaning up your on-prem data inventory or moving corporate data to the cloud, you must clearly understand the regulatory compliance standards surrounding various data types. For some businesses, complying with specific regulatory standards is a legal requirement. Failure to do so may attract heavy fines or lead to business permit suspension. Standard data safety and privacy laws include the HIPAA, COPPA, GLBA, CCPA, and EU’s GDPR.

Raw cloud migration does not guarantee compliance. You have to set up the cloud data storage environment to match the expected compliance standards. Focus on entirely securing susceptible data sets, such as personal information and transactional details.

Develop a list of people with access to data

Migrate to the cloud knowing that you’ll have to control data access privileges – who can access what data. One of the best ways to manage responsible data access is through the least privilege access policy. In this approach, employees can only access and manipulate the data about their roles or positions in the organization. For instance, a salesperson should have no business looking at employees’ payroll information.

Data access management can be a bit tricky to translate from an on-prem setting to a cloud environment. In a physical workplace, you can quickly put up restrictive barriers such as separate networks, servers, and workstations for each department. But you can still implement discriminative access controls on the cloud to lead employees only to the resources they need to complete their jobs.

Hire a trusted partner for cloud migration

Cloud migration is a complicated process. A lot could go wrong if migration is not handled with caution. You have to figure out the right cloud solutions, migration approach, which assets to move, and how actually to move them. Your IT team may not be up to such a challenge. So, it might be good to hire a professional cloud expert to help with the migration. Doing so saves time and money (ironically), minimizes room for error, and guarantees data security.

At GB Tech, we understand the complexities of cloud migration, especially from a technical and cybersecurity standpoint. Our dedicated team of highly skilled and experienced IT support professionals is only a click away from helping you move to a robust and secure cloud infrastructure.

Contact us to learn more on data privacy and cloud migration.