Encryption is a term used to describe the conversion of sensitive files that are protected using a cipher. Encryption is used to secure sensitive data or applications to prevent unauthorised viewing by third parties and potential hackers.

In the cloud computing industry encryption is used to secure data on third party hardware and services. Encryption is also used in products and services that use digital rights management technology to block copyright theft.
Encryption vendors and products are delivered in many formats with the most popular being hard drive encryption and file storage encryption inherent in operating systems such as Microsoft’s Windows 2008. 
Recent innovations in the vendor encryption area include offering encryption as a service to hosted desktop and cloud providers therefore reducing costs for end-users accessing these systems.

There are compelling advantages for any organisation that wishes to use deploy an encryption solution. We have listed out some of these advantages below to help guide your decision.

  • Email and document protection
Encrypt every email in transit and documents held on online portals ensuring complete confidentiality.
  • Comply with data protection regulations
Encrypting personal data is essential to good data protection polices and compliance with regulations.
  • Protect cardholder data
Any company holding cardholder data for recurring billing will be subject to PCI-DSS standards. Best practise is to always provide encryption for cardholder and other sensitive data.
  • Exploit the cloud 
Cloud Computing offers numerous benefits in terms of commercial and operational advantages. Security within the cloud computing space though is seen as the largest inhibitor to adoption. Using an encryption solution with strong cipher and password management may alleviate concerns your organisation has with using cloud computing.
  • Overcome data residency issues
Tokenisation of encrypted data is the process of replacing data with random values that resides on a cloud. Without the necessary cipher this data is worthless and may help an organisation get around data location issues also know as data residency.

With any technology deployment there are things to keep in mind and consider. We have listed out potential pitfalls to consider when purchasing an encryption service.

  • Management
How is the encryption service managed? Does the management console encompass all device and endpoints encrypted?
  • Weak Ciphers
Ciphers or security encryption standards range in size and strength. Ensure that the encryption system you deploy uses the latest encryption standards such as AES or Blowfish.
  • Ease of deployment
Does the encryption vendor offer professional services or channel partners to help you install configure and manage your encryption system. Does the provider offer clear concise instruction manuals and forum support for installations?
  • Key recovery and backup
The encryption key is the cipher for your solution to decrypt and manage your data. Always backup your encryption key and where applicable lodge encryption details with a trusted third party.

At Compare the Cloud, we’re here to help you get started and to identify suitable technology partners to help with your deployment. Take a few minutes to tell us about your company in our Cloud Comparison Tool, and we’ll present you with some informed options – and help you take full advantage of encryption solutions.

Compare Cloud Computing Now

Share this Compare the Cloud content!