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Cloud Compliance

Find out how Cox Business Cloud Solutions helps your business meet cloud security standards and compliance regulations.

When you migrate your data from a physical, on-site environment to the cloud, ensuring compliance is vital. Failure to meet compliance requirements can negatively affect your business in a variety of ways, including reputational loss, high financial costs, time-consuming audits and potential litigation. Every business needs to understand the details of what their cloud provider offers and what their company requires in terms of compliance in order to avoid cloud compliance related issues.

Meeting Strict Compliance Regulations

Many businesses migrate their IT infrastructure to the cloud because it provides access to data from virtually anywhere, and on any device. While this is a convenient option for data storage, compliance remains a concern.

Learn more about cloud compliance and what discussions you need to have before moving your business to the cloud.

What is Cloud Compliance

Cloud compliance refers to a company’s ability to meet regulatory cloud security standards under industry guidelines, including local, national and international laws. Common regulatory standards include the:


  • Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA)
  • Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act (GLBA)
  • Europe’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR)

Cloud compliance requirements will depend on your industry. In general, the same regulations that apply to your physical environment also apply to the cloud. However, there may be additional regulations specifically for your cloud server. Ensuring you’re cloud compliant involves decision-making, governance, security controls, data protection, audits and legal measures.

People sitting around the table discussing importance of cloud compliance

Importance of Cloud Compliance

Understanding how to meet cloud security standards is vital to any business. Failure can result in fines, cyber-attacks, data breaches, lawsuits and reputational damage.
It’s also important to find out who’s in charge of meeting compliance requirements. Compliance is a shared responsibility. Every cloud provider has different compliance offerings, so you can’t assume they’ll meet your organization’s unique needs. Organizations are ultimately accountable for maintaining their cloud compliance, but your cloud provider can help by providing guidance. This may involve multiple parties, including your cloud provider(s), lawyers and IT departments.

Cloud Compliance Challenges

Utilizing the cloud for your IT infrastructure requires a lot of moving parts. Being able to send, receive, store and back up data all require cloud compliance. Before migrating to the cloud, address these components:


  • Visibility Into Hybrid Networks: Managing your traffic flows can be tricky when you have data on a hybrid or multi-cloud network. Make sure to decide who will manage your firewalls and how to protect your data against cyber-attacks.
  • Multi-Cloud Approach: If you choose to use a multi-cloud approach, it can be difficult to track how your data is managed and who is managing it.
  • Compliance Responsibilities: Many companies assume hiring a third-party cloud provider to handle their data means compliance is that party’s responsibility. However, that’s not always the case. Discuss who is responsible before moving your data to the cloud.

Cloud Security Standards and Regulations

Industry-related regulations may include:

Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA)

This federal law requires health organizations to protect patient information and follow best practices in three areas—administrative, physical security and technical security.

System and Organization Controls (SOC) 2

This standard applies to all IT services or SaaS companies storing customer data in the cloud. These data security standards guarantee organizations effectively protect the privacy and security of customer and client data in the cloud.

The Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS)

This is an information security standard for companies managing credit cards, making sure customers are protected from major schemes.

Federal Risk and Authorization Management Program (FedRAMP)

This US regulation provides a standardized process for security assessment and continuous monitoring.

Information Security Management System (ISO) 27001

This international standard provides an approach on how to manage information security.


Businesses should schedule time to discuss compliance regulations with their lawyers before making any decisions. Once laws are identified, companies can discuss the type of security controls needed to meet cloud compliance requirements.


There are various standards a business can use as a foundation to implement security controls, including ISO 27001 or HIPAA. Standards help companies create a best-practice approach to managing information security by addressing the people, processes and technology involved. For example, receiving a certification in the ISO 27001 standard indicates your organization is aligned with worldwide information security standards. Regardless of the standard chosen, a business needs to train employees to implement the proper security controls.

Public Cloud Compliance

Every organization has a shared responsibility to ensure cloud compliance over their entire network. While many of the top cloud providers have certifications that meet worldwide standards, such as ISO 27001 and FedRAMP, compliance isn’t their sole responsibility.

In most cases, cloud providers will give organizations control of their own security measures and protocols. It’s up to each business to find out what security services are offered, how they are implemented and whether these services comply with their unique cloud security standards.

Cloud Compliance Checklist

Before signing on with a third-party cloud provider, review the following components:


  • Data: Depending on your unique regulations, some data may not be compliant in the cloud. Decide what will be stored in the cloud and what will be stored in an on-site data center.
  • Data Location: In the case of an audit, you may be asked where your data is located. Ask your cloud provider if they’re able to reveal this information.
  • Asset Management: While your cloud provider is responsible for managing its infrastructure, your organization is required to manage its own assets, even those hosted by a third-party company.
  • Data Security: While the cloud allows multiple users to access information, it’s important to decide who can access certain data. Identity as a Service (IDaaS) helps manage this by letting you know exactly who is in your network and what assets they can access.
  • Data Encryption: Encryption helps protect your sensitive data from malicious hackers and ensures you’re compliant. Find out whether your cloud provider offers encryption, what type it offers and how it’s applied. Security as a Service (SECaaS) also offers data encryption and security protocols, which helps protect your information, even when mobile users access your network.
  • Shared or Private Data Centers: Depending on your organization’s specific compliance regulations, you may not be able to utilize a public cloud provider for certain data. Check which data must be stored in a private data center. 
  • Service-Level Agreement (SLA): Your industry’s laws and regulations may have an SLA that limits which services your company can use. Understand these limitations and which services are prohibited.
  • Data Protection: Each cloud provider offers varying degrees of data protection. Determine the level your cloud provider offers.
  • Compliance Certifications: Certain cloud services may not be certified. However, a cloud provider may adhere to a stricter set of standards to meet compliance regulations.
  • Auditors: Audits are a routine process of compliance. Inquire whether your company will be entitled to audit cloud compliance.
  • Incident Response: In the case of an emergency event, understand what measures are in place to protect your data. Backup as a Service (BaaS) and Disaster Recovery as a Service (DRaaS) help ensure business continuity when faced with unexpected events, such as power outages, natural disasters or cyber-attacks, with secure data backup. 
  • Compliance Reports: Understand how and where customers can access compliance reports. 

Cox Business offers a suite of cloud services and solutions that meets regulations for healthcare, finance, retail and other highly regulated industries with Tier 3 data centers. If you’re looking to migrate to the cloud, Cox Business can create a smooth transition and help keep your business cloud compliant.

What can Cox Business Cloud Solutions do for your business?

We provide reliable, innovative and secure services to move your business to the next level of IT productivity and profitability.

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