Twitter company files leaked in Cloud Computing security failure

According to TechCrunch, the online news portal, which had been emailed more than 300 documents by the unknown hacker, the information includes details of Twitter growth projections through until 2013.

Unconfirmed reports suggest that the Twitter company planning documents were stored on the GoogleApps service by a senior member of Twitter's staff.

Mike Arrington, TechCrunch's founder, has been quoted as saying that Google's own security may have been to blame for the Twitter/GoogleApp's apparent hack, but Google has been defending its own security.

However, in a blog posting, Twitter claims that the hacker was able to gain access to the accounts of Twitter founder Evan Williams via his wife's email service.

Arrington, meanwhile, asserted that Williams used his pet's name as the answer to one of the online security questions.

News of the Twitter/GoogleApps account hack comes as no surprise, said Andy Cordial, managing director of storage systems integration company Origin Storage.

Many IT staff, he explained, are being pushed by their managers into adopting cloud computing services on a fasttrack basis.

"Our observations suggest that a number of companies and their staff are being forced down the cloud computing route and are having to adapt their IT security systems on the fly," he said.

"We've had concerns about this rate of change in the business sector for some time and, with all the data breaches occurring on the cloud front, it's obvious that the chickens are now coming home to roost," he added.

Cordial explained that this is a classic case of managerial demand where staff have to develop their IT systems on a fasttrack basis, and, as a result, any corporate policies on security - which should be based on established best practice procedures - are not fully applied.

Adding encryption to a company's data storage - whether in the cloud or not - he said, will ensure that data at rest, as well as on the move, is protected from prying eyes.

"Applying effective security is all about planning and then applying that planning, backed up by a set of solid security policies with encryption at its heart," he said.

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