Data Security in SaaS
In the digital-driven world, there is a dire demand to ensure data security, be it personal or business data. Data security is vital to ensure seamless business operations. With increasing global threats, data breaches and vulnerabilities businesses are taking extra measures to safeguard any information possible. Organisations are turning to Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) Security which takes the burden of storing and safeguarding big data on its pedestal.
SaaS has its roots in the cloud and uses cloud computing technologies to make sensitive data accessible to authorised users. This has made data omnipresent with users digging into it from any place, at any time within the blink of an eye.
This technology is useful, however, only when the companies are willing to follow best practices and take extra caution while handling data and using the cloud. Here is a detailed view of data security best practices, why choosing the cloud is lucrative and all that surrounds the security aspects of facility management.
Data Security: Best Practices to follow
The security offered by SaaS is the main reason that it is chosen by the majority of institutions and organisations for their security needs. Here are some best practices in SaaS security that are highly recommended for getting the most.
Resort to multi-factor authentication
Although the data residing in the cloud is not available to every user and requires some form of authentication, a great way to ensure maximum security is multi-factor authentication that follows at least 2 ways to authorise user entry.
Ensure end data encryption
Companies should always look for SaaS providers that secure data with end-to-end security encryption which blocks other parties from using or viewing data and information stored in online databases and ensures the security of databases.
Check on SaaS provider’s certifications and compliance
Before opting for SaaS, the vendors should be thoroughly checked and assessed for the standard certifications laid out by the governing bodies. Checking for compliance and authentication details may seem to be a tedious procedure but a thorough check enables greater security and better management.
Separation of access
It is best practice to separate access to crucial data to ensure enough data is available for various tiers of the organisation and at the same time, access to sensitive data is highly controlled and limited. For example, top-tier management teams can have access to more sensitive data like insights and sales reports for better planning while the junior executives should have only limited access to data.
Secure integration with other platforms
Storing data in the cloud has a huge advantage in that it can be synced across various devices and also platforms. This includes third-party applications that are usually used by the facility managers or other management teams to collaborate and make operations easier. To increase data security in SaaS, the vendor needs to ensure that sensitive data and personal information are not being made readily available to any app that is synced with the cloud.
Taking the help of external resources
There are several external resources like Cloud Access Security Broker (CASB) that can work alongside SaaS providers and help companies build an extra wall above databases to avoid instances of hacking and easy breaches.
Develop data protection policies
Going with basic security practices like authentication and password-protected access is best for the general data but companies should sit with their SaaS vendors and devise proper policies for the protection of highly sensitive data like the credit card details of employees or customers. With these in place, the companies can be sure that crucial data is beyond any vulnerability wall and is hard to crack in.
Common Myths Surrounding Security and Privacy in Facility Management
Even after being such a popular service, cloud computing still finds itself encircled by baseless myths and misconceptions.
Myth #1 – Cloud Storage is expensive
When it comes to opting for cloud services, companies are usually hesitant because subscription-based plans and applications may look costly to some. It is also feared among organisations that basic plans may not solve their problems at all and they would end up spending more on “extra” features than anticipated.
This myth is nowhere close to reality as the very reason for the popularity of SaaS from the beginning is because it is a cost-effective solution for all businesses. The organised and structured operations and definitive security approach make it possible for the organisations to cut huge amounts in the long run. As for extra features, the cloud vendors are open about their plans and help companies in selecting the appropriate ones depending on the scalability and usage of services.
Myth #2 – Using SaaS provider increases vulnerability
In the initial years when the concept of the cloud was introduced, its accessibility and omnipresence tickled the fear-bones of facility managers. It was believed that this would make the job of hackers too easy and sensitive data would end up being more vulnerable and “open” while using the cloud.
The presence of tiered access allows data to be highly segregated and protected as it is made available to only certain employees with authorisation. This ensures that no data is being handled inappropriately or is being compromised at any time.
Myth #3 – Making the switch to the cloud is cumbersome
A popular myth surrounding facilities management software being in the cloud is that shifting operations is cumbersome and requires a lot of time and effort.
Switching to SaaS is not as tedious as it seems and since there are no hardware or external resources required for operation, the task is far from cumbersome. Some vendors can get your data transferred to the cloud, up and running in just a few hours, making it a go-to solution for data handling and management, especially in facility management.
Advantages of Cloud-Based Facility Management Software
The most basic advantage of SaaS facility management is that the data and all of the resources owned by the facility is available to all the users at any time of the day.
Users with all kinds of devices can access cloud infused data. In addition to that, any kind of OS like Apple or Android users can view the data easily while on the go. This enables uniformity within the organisation and leads to greater collaboration among team members.
High data encryption, multi-tiered security layers and automated incident blocking allow all kinds of data to be highly protected and safeguarded at all times, ensuring that information is always safe from hacking attempts and other malware.
How SaaS Benefits Facility Managers
The best part about this is that SaaS is truly a boon for facility managers serving as a reliable hand in deploying a successful facility management module.
Ease in Installation
Shifting to the cloud is fairly easy and doesn’t require the deployment of bulky systems and hardware. This makes its installation fairly easy and the systems are up and running in no time at all as opposed to the traditional on-site security approach where bulky systems had to be accommodated in facilities for providing internal security networks.
On-the-go accessibility to features
If we were to locate a facility manager inside the premises some 10 years back, they would usually be found hooked to a fixed workstation or machines. With cloud services, mobile and other portable devices have made things possible without using computers and checklists, reports, insights, updates and all major features can be accessed using tablets and smartphones.
Better disaster recovery possible
To ensure facility security, facility managers can collaborate with the SaaS service vendors and ensure that the data of all natures are highly secured at all times. This method involves forming schematic strategies for reducing vulnerability to data and formulating disaster recovery options, in cases of a data breach or system failures. Due to this, Facility managers can stay better prepared and take quick actions in cases of failures or mishaps than in cases of conventional on-site supervision.
Automation of processes and alerts
Protecting data in the cloud means that facility managers need not bear the burden of complete maintenance of assets and other equipment as most of the traditional processes are automated. This brings in timely alerts and reminders of crucial operations like repairs, changes of machines or detecting flaws in working etc. without any physical supervision or extra upkeep.
The technology is ever-changing and it can be difficult to stay in the game with updates and the latest tools that spring up every week. In the early days, the facility managers would need to take care of the latest tools and install the required software updates from time to time. This has become a case of the past with new technologies adopted by SaaS providers that instantly inform the facility management team of the changes required and even install updates automatically, whenever needed.