In this article, we will be highlighting some of the cloud security features in Acumatica, a cloud-based ERP solution with no user license cost and a knack for manufacturing. But, before we even begin talking about a particular Cloud software’s security, let’s address the concerns that management usually holds for cloud security as a whole:
- Can others “find” / “hack” / “see” my data?
This depends on where your data resides – what servers they are on and the security built into those servers, where the servers physically reside, and the security of the software managing your data. Then there is the human element. If all other security measures are tight but you have unethical people that have valid permission to access your data, there is nothing software nor hardware can do to stop data leaks. Many of the on-premise challenges are the same for Cloud deployments of business software or ERP.
- Is data stored in the Cloud still mine?
The answer depends on both your service level agreement with the people who own the Cloud servers and your contract with the software you are using to manage your data. Check the fine print of both to make sure that you can always access your data and that your data really is yours – even if you don’t pay the bill! Also be knowledgeable about whether you can take a copy (a snapshot) of your database and store it somewhere that is not your Cloud provider.
- Will my data be lost in the Cloud?
Again, that depends. Make sure your Cloud provider has back-up systems (redundancy and fail-over) that are not on the same physical site as your main servers. Confirm that the redundancy and fail-over systems are equally secure as your main systems and are located far enough away that if there is an earthquake in California, your data can be pulled from Pennsylvania – or Calgary – or Ireland! Also ask about any performance slow-downs if you have to use the back-up data and how often they make a snapshot.
All of the questions above should be clearly addressed in your service level agreements with both the Cloud provider and software manufacturer. Acumatica has addressed each of the questions above to provide a truly Cloud based ERP system.
First, one of their three deployment methods is SaaS (software as a service) currently hosted by AWS (Amazon Web Services). Companies can put high-trust in AWS environments not only for their server security, but also their redundancy, up-time (99%+), and performance while using your software of choice.
Second, Acumatica’s agreements with AWS regarding performance and scalability are robust, thus insuring that your company can get its data in real-time.
Real-time is a concept embraced in the 90's meaning that data can be processed as close to instantaneously as possible. Real-time data provides management with up-to-date information for better business decision making. Acumatica has taken the concept of real-time to its next level both in security and in the Acumatica ERP software in general.
Acumatica security is based on User Authentication and Authorization – in real-time. Your company can add a new employee, assign them to a defined group and role and that employee can immediately begin being productive in their new job. No waiting. For instance, the following short video shows two different people logging into the system. The Admin has permissions for all software suites and branches. The Salesperson has permissions to see just the pieces of the ERP they need to do their job and only the branch they work in.
The video shows that the software element of your ERP can provide security for however you want your business to be structured – as simple as you want it or as detailed as your business demands.
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