How secure is cloud hosting? (Spoiler: very safe)

How secure is cloud hosting? (Spoiler: very safe) header image

In our digital world, data security has never been more important. Businesses and individuals need to trust that their intellectual property and personal data are protected—especially in an environment increasingly vulnerable to security threats. As cloud hosting becomes more common, many are embracing this new way of managing their data. But the question remains: how secure is cloud hosting?

With cloud hosting, software divides a single physical server into multiple virtual servers. This has led to questions about whether or not you truly have control over your data—and more importantly if this information is secure from malware, data breaches, and other vulnerabilities.

Like any kind of hosting, cloud technology should be designed with security at top of mind. But the truth is, cloud hosting is one of the most secure ways you can use to manage your data. Here’s a helpful guide for understanding the security benefits of cloud hosting.

Is cloud hosting more or less secure than traditional hosting?

In a traditional server environment, like VPA, managed hosting, or local hosting, your website is hosted on a single server in a data center. Cloud hosting, on the other hand, involves a network of connected virtual and physical cloud servers. What does this mean for security?

Like traditional hosting, physical servers for the cloud are typically located in warehouses that only authorized employees can access. Files on these servers are encrypted to keep cybercriminals at bay.

While both traditional and cloud hosting providers prioritize security, 64% of IT professionals surveyed by Clutch argue that cloud infrastructure is more secure than legacy systems. This is because cloud infrastructure offers an added layer of security known as virtualization. Virtualization improves the physical security of your servers by reducing the number of hardware in an environment, meaning there are less opportunities for malicious activity.

The cloud is also monitored at all times—from the server, across the network, and on all software. Centralized management makes sure that security systems are up-to-date, while making sure no data is lost if your system is compromised.

Who is responsible for security in a hosted cloud?

Your hosting provider is responsible for designing, configuring, and monitoring your servers to make sure they are as safe as possible. Their role is to safeguard the cloud infrastructure and maintain security across its different layers.

That said, responsibility varies slightly based on the type of cloud you have. For example, with private clouds, enterprises are responsible for security measures because they are hosting from their own data centers. This also means they own the data and security. With public clouds, the cloud vendor owns the infrastructure, network, and hypervisor—while the enterprise owns the data.

Though your hosting provider plays a huge role in protecting your domain and data, it’s important to take your own safety measures, too. For example, make sure your password is unique and appropriately difficult to hack.

What are common cloud security issues—and how can I mitigate them?

While cloud hosting is extremely secure, it is not immune from security threats—like any hosting method. Be prepared by knowing what threats you’re up against:

  • Virtual server isolation errors: When implemented properly, virtual servers are completely isolated from other servers. However, if done incorrectly, your data could be at risk. Be sure to talk to your hosting provider about virtual server isolation implementation to protect against security threats.
  • DDoS attacks: A distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) attack is an attempt to disrupt the traffic of your server by overwhelming your infrastructure with malicious traffic. Be sure to have a procedure in place to differentiate between attack traffic and normal domain traffic.
  • Insider attacks: This security risk typically comes from within your organization, if a current or former employee has access to sensitive information and then abuses this access. Steer clear of this threat by implementing strict password and account management policies.
  • Access control issues: In the same breath, only authorized personnel should have access to your cloud systems. Make sure to have a policy in place for who can access networks, systems, and other sensitive data to avoid security breaches. This may include a two-factor authentication solution.
  • Regulatory compliance: Cloud hosting providers and companies must adhere to laws and comply with industry standards. If companies neglect these security regulations, they may face more risks and threats. Be prepared with audits and data protection resources.

What security questions should I ask a cloud hosting provider?

  1. What measures do you take to mitigate security risks and protect data?
  2. Where are the physical servers located?
  3. How do you ensure data centers are secure?
  4. Who else has access to my data in the cloud?
  5. Do you have a policy for who can access my data?
  6. Is all of my data encrypted?
  7. Do you have a procedure in place if you suspect malicious activity?
  8. Do you perform regular backups? If so, how often?
  9. What Service Level Agreements (SLAs) do you offer?
  10. Do you provide a Disaster Recovery (DR) plan?

Is cloud hosting secure?

In the digital age, many businesses and individuals are transitioning to cloud hosting to make sure their data is secure. Cloud hosting ensures that your data is stored, backed up, and protected on a daily basis—with an added layer of security known as virtualization. Centralized management also protects your data in the event of a security breach. Equipped with this knowledge of potential security risks and the right questions for your hosting provider, your business or brand can join a new wave of secure cloud users.

Explore the benefits of cloud hosting with DigitalOcean at