As SaaS adoption increases, so are cyber security risks associated with it.
There is indeed a growing trust in the security capability of SaaS solutions. Nevertheless, it is prudent to ask the right questions to assess SaaS-related cyber security risks before choosing a cloud-based solution.
Let’s evaluate five questions that you must ask your SaaS service provider.
How is my data secured?
A good SaaS company respects your right to know the precise safeguards implemented to protect your data. They must explain it through their privacy policies, a white paper or a security data sheet. For example, they must explain how data is encrypted or how ransomware is detected. While these details may be complex, the service provider must explain the same.
Further, they must also explain how they will recover services in a natural disaster or a cyber attack. And, what happens to your data in such a situation? How will it be recovered?
Also, it would be best to ask them about the cyber security standards they follow. A mature SaaS company will proactively adopt and certify itself to data security standards such as ISO 27001 and SOC2. These certifications ensure that an independent third-party auditor has verified their cyber security posture.
Remember, a mature SaaS company will welcome questions and transparently reveal its security assurance procedures.
Who gets access to my data?
While your data may be secure, it is vital to know who has access to it. You must ask the SaaS service provider to provide a list of third parties who access your data. For example, the service provider may be outsourcing software development to a third-party company. Or, they may be storing your data in a third-party cloud. They could also be using another third-party software to mine your data.
Where is my data stored?
Do you know where your data is at any given time? SaaS service providers may have data centres across the globe, whereas your government may mandate that specific data reside within the country. In such cases, it is crucial to clarify the precise location of data storage.
How do you protect personal data from identity theft?
Personal data belonging to employees will usually be a part of the data you share with SaaS service providers. Apart from that, you may provide credit card details for SaaS subscription payments. What measures are in place to protect this information from identity theft?
Further, if your business comes under the ambit of GDPR, the SaaS service provider must recognize your rights.
How do you protect data from emerging threats such as ransomware attacks against cloud storage?
When the adoption of SaaS increases, it is no surprise that cybercriminals are around the corner. They will use malicious strategies such as phishing emails that masquerade as genuine emails from the SaaS service provider and entice users to share their login credentials. They can use these credentials to inject ransomware and encrypt the SaaS storage. Your SaaS service provider must prove the robustness of their cyber security framework to mitigate new risks as they emerge.
As a closing note, it would be best if you asked all the questions, you believe are relevant, especially when it comes to your security, to your SaaS service provider.