HIPAA Compliant Cloud Storage

How to: NIC Teaming Windows Server 2012 R2 with Hyper-V

Verified and Tested 03/10/2015

Introduction

This How-To will walk you through Configuring Windows Server 2012 R2 NIC Teaming to a Hyper-V Virtual Machine.

NIC Teaming is the name Microsoft gives for the process of combining multiple network interface controllers (NICs) together for speed, redundancy or both.

Prerequisites

– A Windows Server 2012 R2 server with the Hyper-V role installed.

– Minimum 2 NIC cards installed on your server.

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How to Expand a VM Hard Disk in Hyper-V on Windows Server 2012

Verified and Tested 03/31/2015

Introduction

We often find ourselves running out of hard drive space and now in Hyper-V 2012 we have the ability to expand our virtual hard drives. We are used to seeing that when we add storage space or anything that is an increase, we’ll see it immediately.  That is not the case when we choose to expand your virtual servers hard disk in Hyper-V 2012. The amount of space that you have added will not be available for you to use right away. We need to use our windows disk management tool, to expand/combine the existing partition with the partition space created. With that being said, in this how-to we will walk you through Expanding a VM Hard Disk in Hyper-V 2012.

Prerequisites

– A server with Windows Server 2012.
– Hyper-V Role installed
– An existing VM (Virtual Machine)

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How to Enter Single User Mode for Ubuntu Atlantic.net Cloud Servers

Verified and Tested 02/28/2015

Introduction

This article will show you how to enter single user mode for maintenance of multi-user environments or changing/resetting a lost superuser password of Ubuntu servers.

Why do I need this?

My cloud server will only enter read-only mode, FSCK complains about permissions, or I need to make sure no one can access my server while I make security changes.

I forgot my cloud server password, and I would not like to use the automated password reset feature (see our article on how to reset an Atlantic.net cloud server password).

You will need to access your cloud server using the provided VNC. See our article on how to access the server.

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Google+ Local Pages vs. Google+ Business Pages vs. Google Local Listings

Google+ pages officially launched in November of 2011, but two years later, they still have a long way to go. One of the main areas that could benefit from some improvement is local Google+ pages – arguably the most confusing of all the page types. Google+ Local pages can be very powerful if you know how to use them. With that being said, I’m going to clear the smoke on this often confusing digital marketing tool so that you can make proper use of it!

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5 Security Tips for Cloud Computing

Cloud adoption has been growing over the last couple of years primarily driven by cost reduction and speed of adoption. However, according to a survey performed by KPMG, the top barriers to cloud adoption remain to be related to security and compliance.  Data security is projected to remain the most important SLA parameter in 3 years. Fundamentally, the data and network security is about three control objectives i.e. confidentiality, integrity and availability.

Know Where Your Data Lives

Being able to know where your data physically, goes a long way in establishing your cloud security and risk assessment. Some cloud providers could have data centers in international locations and which may be subject to laws and policies of that jurisdiction. The data center location is also critical in evaluating latency impacts on your application that you are communicating with. International data centers often suffer a reduced latency that may pose a risk for your business applications on the cloud.

Have a Disaster Recovery and Business Continuity Plan

In 2009, a lightning strike triggered Amazon EC2 outage and the cloud services were offline for about 4 hours as an aftermath. Data backup and availability are critical and one of the main challenges facing the service providers. Take a long term view on your hosting services and make sure that you backup your data at appropriate times to ensure that the customer data is not lost. Understand the risks associated with data availability and disaster recovery issues that may impact your business. Big companies have lost their data due to improper backup procedures and it is one of the growing concerns for moving your services to the cloud.

Understand How Your Data is Protected

Understand and solicit clear information around how your cloud server hosting provider protects your data with encryption and firewall security, especially if you need HIPAA compliant cloud server hosting. Encryption is a must-have on public cloud SaaS solutions and the need to be secure and encrypted. Cloud computing resources should be sheltered with a mandatory inbound firewall. Devise plans for how you are going to monitoring network attacks or hostile system activity even if you are on the cloud. You are only going to be able to understand the sufficiency of your security if your cloud provider is willing to disclose their security practices. Some providers treat the security practices as confidential which can become more challenging.

Third Party Audits: Service Organization Control Reports

Curious if your provider is serious about security? Research to see if they have been audited by third parties to build trust and confidence with the customers. In February 2013, Cloud Security Alliance (CSA) released their position paper stating the purpose of SOC 1 and SOC 2 reports for cloud service providers appropriating SOC 2 as the de facto standard for cloud security.   SOC 2 audits conducted in accordance of AT 101 cover controls relevant to security, availability, processing integrity, or privacy. In 2013, the number of data centers and CSPs which underwent a SOC 2 attestation increased by 100% YOY from 7% in 2012 to 14% in 2013. Aside from SOC 2, PCI Compliance, HIPAA Compliance and ISO certifications are important indicators for dedication your cloud service provider has for security.

Hassan Sultan is a partner at Reckenen, which provides accounting and assurance services to privately held companies.  Atlantic.net offers reliable and cost-effective Cloud Server hosting for a wide range of business opportunities.

Atlantic.Net offers HIPAA compliant cloud storage solutions. Contact us today for a consultation.


Cloud Storage Encryption & Healthcare Data Security

For a long time, data security has been a major need in the healthcare industry, but as HIPAA compliant cloud storage gains more and more traction, healthcare providers are starting to take advantage of it to keep their data secure.  As a whole, the healthcare industry is very conscientious about data privacy and some of these issues can be addressed through cloud encryption and cloud key management.

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