Understand the risks involved in using cloud services in your business.
The risks and liability associated with storing, archiving and preserving data in the cloud can be catastrophic. For example, if your confidential data is stored with a brand-name cloud servicing company, it is possible that your provider is using a third-party contractor located in a remote location such as Taiwan, India, Singapore or a number of overseas markets attractive for outsourcing. Many cloud providers will not tell you where they are storing your data or if they are sub-contracting storage of your data to a third party. Who will you be able to hold responsible if a person located outside the United States accesses your confidential data by hacking the overseas server farm where your data resides?
Using cloud service companies for data management can have many unexpected consequences. Some cloud servicing companies require service contracts that include onerous terms, such as the transfer of ownership rights to the data upon use of the service. This can be disastrous if any of your data includes trade secrets, copyrights, research and development, confidential customer data, privileged communications with counsel, and information covered by HIPPA. By agreeing to the service terms and conditions for some cloud servicing companies, you could be inadvertently exposing your organization to breach of contract actions with customers, violation of state and federal privacy laws and gross negligence.
Email is also at risk. End-to-end encryption is currently the best method for sending confidential messages and documents across the internet. If you are not using end-to-end encryption, your email, and all attachments thereto, can be accessed by anyone with access to the network servers used to transmit and receive those messages.
Before entering into an agreement with a cloud service or email provider, you should diligently research the risks associated with storing your data with that company. Kennedy Law attorneys understand the intricacies accompanying data rights management and can provide counsel on these complex issues.