Cloud-based ERP system can multiple benefits to your business like flexibility, scalability and unrestricted accessibility at very economical costs. It can actively help you to enjoy better agility and increase the capabilities your employees bringing a positive change in the productivity levels. While you get a number of benefits by the deployment of cloud ERP, there are a number of important factors to be considered before you buy the cloud ERP. Here is a checklist of 11 major questions to ask your service provider before you purchase a cloud-based ERP for your business.
Checklist of Cloud-based ERP for Your Business
1. What Are The Policies You Follow For Data Mobility And Retention?
When you invest significant amount of time, efforts, and attention to deploying cloud services, it is but natural that you would like to get the maximum benefits out of your investment. Data migration holds an immense value here and is one the key factors to be considered when you want to harness the best purpose specific benefits out of your cloud hosting investment. There must be strong policies with regards to data retention as well as mobility.
2. Will You Also Offer A Service Authentication? Please Elaborate.
While every reputed and reliable cloud service provider guarantee you the best security, it is always best to be sure about the level of security you enjoy with your provider. As a client, you have right to know about the precise security terms, conditions, inclusions and limitations that you are entitled to enjoy.
So it can be of immense help to inquire your service provider about the security authentication that will be offered to you and confirm the same. Especially in the corporate communication where a number of key business documents and other elements of vital importance are involved, you cannot risk starting the cloud services without precisely knowing about the security environments that will be offered to you.
3. How Do You Check Security Environment Of Third-party Datacenters?
Due to their very structure, the cloud hosting providers heavily rely on the third party providers. However, an ideal cloud hosting providers should have streamlined well-defined methodologies and strategies to check the security environment of the data centers.
Check your service provider if they have a periodical well-defined mechanism to authenticate, and evaluate the performance of 3rd party data servers. It not only ensures the interruption-free secured services for the clients but also allows your service provider to check for any security gaps or vulnerable holes in security policies and/or the way these policies are tackled in the day to day scenario. It should regularly go for the required updates to fortify the security environment against latest threats.
4. How Do You Tackle Identity And Access Management Of Your Client’s Accounts?
You should have a strong and reliable process of controlling the data access to ensure the maximum security of your confidential data as well as key business information. You would most possibly like to restrict it to a few key personnel only. Depending upon the amount of information, communication frequency, information value and other such relevant features you can go for appropriate approval system (either one tier or go for two-tier for an added level of security) Some of the most common methods to fortify the security of your sensitive data are data encryption, digital signatures, and combination password patterns etc.
However, depending on your specific requirements you may also opt for more sophisticated and customizable security methods after a thorough consultation with your vendor.
5. How Do You Encrypt To-And-Fro Traffic Over The Cloud?
Data-stealing is one of the most common reasons for a huge number of corporate threats arising out of IT operations. However, with strong data encryption policies, you can save your data from being stolen by malicious elements with suspicious intentions. So you should have a thorough discussion with your cloud service provider in this regards and ensure that you should be getting the best data encryption facilities by your service provider.
6. Do You Also Employ Anti-malware And Virus Detection/deletion Provision?
Viruses, malware, bots and other similar automated elements can be used by hackers to damage your site and steal the vital information. Did you know that all your IT activities can be monitored by smart hackers round the clock just by inserting a single virus or bot in your system? So, you need to check with your service provider if they have failsafe measures aimed at identifying and prevention of such threats, intrusions, and attacks by viruses, malware, etc. Don’t settle for a general answer and you should demand the specific provisions with precise purpose specific features.
7. How Do You Ensure Data Safety During Patches And Updates?
Various internal activities like patching updates can bare the key data and makes it vulnerable to be compromised. That’s why it is almost mandatory to appropriately guard the data during such instances by following strong surveillance and security procedures during such critical internal activities conducted by your provider.
8. How Do You Take Backups And How/where Do You Store Them?
While the security of your live data is extremely important then your backup data and storage also needs the similar level of security. In fact, the very idea of backup loses its meaning if the backup data does not enjoy the appropriate security protections. You should also know about other vital aspects such as how and where are they stored, and the restrictions, capabilities or other important feature of the same.
9. How Do You Ensure The Security During Data Deletion Exercises?
While you should follow the best policies during various data storage and transfer activities it is equally important to adhere to the ideal policies when it comes to deleting the data. So there should be appropriately secured disposal policies followed by your provider. Apart from the obvious security threats the deleted data can also tell or indicate many things pertaining to your live data thus making your site prone to data the theft endeavors.
10. How Would You Notify Regarding Uncommon Events Like Data Breach?
If reported promptly the dangerous after-effects of a data breach can be minimized by taking the ideal steps in time. The speed and format of data breach reporting play a vital role here. So, check with your service provider about the medium, format and other details of data breach alerts. The ideal service provider should also provide a detailed event log that enables you to go for a wholesome analysis of data breach instances so that you can nab the culprit before it is too late.
11. How Would You Document The Responsible Disclosure Policy?
The well-maintained disclosure policies establish the authority and sincerity of the vendor. Without relying on verbal statement demand a printed copy of all the disclosure policies that they promise you. Such copies should be duly signed by them. It shows that the vendor is prepared to take all ownership of responsibilities associated with the disclosure policies.
This guide explains the key questions to ask before you buy cloud-based ERP packages that determine the security, performance and purpose-specific benefits.