Many small and medium businesses are already using various cloud file storage and collaboration applications available in the marketplace. Applications such as Box, Dropbox, Google Drive, etc will significantly increase business productivity without hitting the budget. These cloud storage options reduce the requirement for installing and maintaining local servers, complex network protection and IT staff to manage this infrastructure. Yet, many are still skeptical when it comes to the security credentials of these cloud storage solutions. While these applications have serious security features that make them more secure than most small networks and isolated PCs, there are still things that the individual user or a small/medium business can do to increase data security. Box (Box.net) is the most often associated cloud storage option for businesses due to its extensive list of features and user access controls. However, there are still some Box options that can create issues for business that is serious about the security of their data. For example:

  • With higher plans Box will store and transfer encrypted information reducing the risk of information being lost while on Box servers or in transfer to user PCs. However, using Box Sync application will mean that not encrypted information is still deposited on your PC.
  • End users can sign from various locations and various PCs. This means that your information is at risk being exposed to unsecured workstations or networks.

Thankfully, the solution for these issues isn’t that complex or expensive.

Solutions data security loan processing

  • Firstly, you need to ensure that your Mac or PC is hardened with adequate internet protection, complex passwords for login and screensaver, correct OS settings, etc.
  • You should only use trusted and encrypted WiFi networks to connect to the internet.
  • If you use Box for business, Enterprise plans offer full cloud storage and transfer encryption.
  • You can create an encrypted folder for BoxSync on your workstation. More comprehensive versions of Windows offer encryption software BitLocker. There are also other encryption programs, such as TrueCrypt that can protect BoxSync folder and encrypt files while on your PC. Apple OX includes FileVault encryption.
  • Set up a two step verification if you use Box for Enterprise.  This will add an extra layer of authentication security when accessing your cloud application.
  • Alternatively, there are several SSO (single sign on) solutions that can be integrated with Box. For example, Intel’s Expressway Cloud Access 360 offers SSO capability; strong multi-factor authentication and device control that ensures only allowed workstations/devices can access your Box files.
  • Enterprise Box users have several security settings that can significantly improve data security.  For example, you can limit number of devices with Sync assess, a number of mobile devices that can access Box account, set up a level of password complexity required, etc.

One key feature that is still unavailable in Box is the specific device approval, e.g. allowing only approved PCs/Macs to access your Box files.  We are looking forward to Box developing this important security feature. These few steps will make your PCs and Box cloud storage very secure without impacting your budget or performance. Best of all, you do not need IT experts to assist you in implementing these solutions.