In 2022, businesses stored around 60% of corporate data in the cloud, an increase of 10% on the year before.
As more and more data (such as employee data, customer data and financial information) is stored in the cloud each year, it becomes vital for businesses to protect the data they are responsible for.
A cloud security policy is an internal policy for your organisation that relates how you’ll keep data secure in the cloud. Every business that uses the cloud or third party apps should have one in place to ensure that customer and employee data is protected.
In terms of scope, your policy should cover all of your cloud systems and tools including SaaS apps such as Google Drive, Jira, and Slack. Intended for internal use, it should also be shared with contractors, freelancers, and agencies who are working with your company.
Rather than being a one-off task, your policy should be reviewed and updated on a regular basis. While having a cloud security policy will allow you to be proactive in your approach to cloud security, it should outline how users should be utilising the cloud, and, since lots of devices and users can access the cloud, you should also discuss what would happen if it’s breached, and how you would prevent malware or other cyberthreats spreading to other devices connected to it.
An in-house security professional should be project managing the creation of a cloud security policy, but there should be other teams involved such as legal, HR and compliance to ensure you’re aligned with the company’s values and legal requirements.
It’s not recommended to outsource this to a third party as your employees will understand how best to integrate your cloud security policy with your workflows, without disrupting your employees.
“If your team are using the cloud on a daily basis (as much of us are), it’s vital that you put a cloud security policy together to keep it protected,” says Sheree Buller Lim, Head of Product at Metomic.
“Not only can it help you to understand how you’ll secure your cloud to minimise the risk of data breaches, but you could also face fines for non-compliance if you don’t have one in place. It also gives your customers the assurance that their data is protected which is hugely important in this day and age.”
Your cloud security policy should cover some important points, such as:
Creating an effective cloud security policy takes careful planning and is very much a team effort.
Here are a few steps you can follow to make sure you have everything you need in place:
Metomic's data security software can help you protect sensitive data in your SaaS apps by giving you full visibility and control over things like PHI, PII, financial data, confidential employee information and more that could be hiding in apps like Slack, Google Drive, Jira and Notion.
By reducing the amount of data you hold, and minimising the impact of a potential data breach, Metomic helps you comply with GDPR, PCI DSS, and other compliance requirements that have strict rules around the storage of sensitive data.