But there’s also that other type of cloud, the one that powers things like Facebook and Twitter. It means personal data is stored on a network of online servers, letting us access our stuff from wherever we have a connection.
It’s helping to change our lives - particularly the way we work. Businesses use cloud services like MyMobileWorkers because it’s smarter, more efficient and boosts mobile workforce productivity.
But what about cloud security?
If the media is to believed, the cloud is some kind of hi-tech Wild West where hackers roam freely; laughing maniacally as they harvest your precious data. So what’s the deal?
Is the cloud secure?
The simple answer is…yes.
A certified cloud provider is just about the safest place you can store data. The entire industry depends on being able to protect your information, so they eat and breathe security.
They’re invested in the kind of firewall and encryption security that a single company just can’t compete with.
So what about all these hacking stories?
To be fair, there haven’t really been many, not when you consider how much of our data is now stored in the cloud. The biggest story has been the ‘hacking’ of celebrity photos from Apple’s iCloud.
But once the dust had settled, it turned out that Apple’s cloud servers hadn’t been breached. Instead, the hackers managed to guess security questions for certain high-profile accounts.
It’s not possible to have 100 percent security so there’s always going to be a risk. But the fact that that organisations like the CIA now use the cloud shows the level of confidence in it.
"The cloud can never be as safe as storing data in our office"
It feels like that should be the case.
If feels safer because you know where your data is - it’s on a computer or server that hums comfortingly in the corner of your office.
But it doesn’t really matter where your data is physically stored.
Because unless your company bans the use of any online services, then you’re already part of ‘the cloud’. It’s still accessible to hacker types - just without the same level of security.
And even if you went a bit nuts and switched off the Internet and unplugged anything with an online connection - it still wouldn’t be safe.
Because hard-drives eventually fail and then there’s the risk of break-ins and fires and, one of the biggest real-world risks… employees holding grudges.
And if you lose your data locally, you’re liable to have lost everything.
With a cloud-based system you can’t lose the data as it’s always stored across multiple different servers. It’s why so many companies use cloud backup services.
What if a worker loses their handset with job information on it?
With a cloud service, there’s much less risk than if somebody lost the equivalent paperwork.
Because the worker’s smartphone acts more as a gateway to the data and if you don’t have the right security information - you can’t access it.
The MyMobileWorkers system also has a smart security feature which automatically logs you out if the phone’s not been used for a certain amount of time.
So the best security is for people not to lose stuff - but if they do, there’s much less risk with a cloud based system.
If you're thinking about switching to mobile workforce tracking software, read about how to convince mobile workers that tracking can actually benefit them.