Issues of data confidentiality, integrity and availability all effect cloud security. To prevent security problems when starting a cloud computing program, companies need to plan their defensive strategies and develop protocols to protect data.

According to Kenneth van Wyk of Computerworld, jumping too quickly into cloud computing can cause security issues that can be avoided with proper planning.

The confidentiality of data is a key concern in cloud computing, as data storage is often outsourced to the cloud provider. van Wyk points out that no contract or term can guarantee the safety of data stored by a cloud provider. Instead, an organization needs to have a scheme for protecting that information if it is compromised. He recommends encryption as a front-line defense, as coded data could not be read by an outsider if it were stolen. A second option, according to van Wyk, is to back up business-critical data on an internal storage device.

Overall, van Wyk thinks that integrity is not a major threat when dealing with cloud data storage. Unless the third-party provider experiences a security breach and data is tampered with, there is only a minimal threat to the integrity of information.

Availability does pose some problems in the cloud. According to the news source, network and data outages at the cloud data center can prevent businesses from accessing their own information at will.

The key in availability, van Wyk says, is to properly research the history and capabilities of a cloud computing provider before entering into a service contract. Not all providers have an equal ability to transmit data, so finding one that meets a specific business' need is crucial.

According to Neil MacDonald, vice president and fellow at Gartner, van Wyk's security concerns are fairly shallow. MacDonald believes that cloud can actually improve security protocols, as they have been designed with the intention to provide a secure third-party data storage and SaaS solutions, reports.