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From sensitive remote work files to priceless home photos and videos, there is a lot of important data worth safeguarding in the cloud. Securing it takes many different forms, and it is a responsibility shared by the cloud service provider (CSP), clients, and end-user hardware. CSPs are responsible for monitoring and responding to security risks in the cloud infrastructure itself, while clients need to focus on service configuration and safe use habits.

Threats to cloud security are numerous and varied. They range from DDoS attacks that cripple your online services to a data breach that exposes personal information and causes damage to your reputation. Often, they start with misconfigurations that open doors for cyber criminals to exploit.

Many large cloud providers practice redundancy, which is a way of copying and storing your data in several locations to keep it secure from attack. They also hire outside security companies to test their servers and software on a regular basis for vulnerabilities that hackers can exploit. However, this approach doesn’t cover everything. Moreover, it leaves your data vulnerable to the same problems as networked computers and devices that aren’t in the cloud.

Having a clear view of how your CSPs manage your cloud assets helps you to assess whether they are implementing the best practices for your specific needs and data type. For example, a CASB will use an application programming interface (API) to give you the ability to see what data is located in the cloud, where it is being downloaded and shared, and who is accessing it.