What Is Cloud Accounting

A Better Overview Of Your Finances

The cloud: it's nowhere, anywhere and everywhere all at once - but what is it?

Cloud work life balance info graphic by Clear BooksDon't get hung up on the metaphor. The "cloud" is just a useful way of representing an intangible thing. If you use social media or online data drives, you're already using the cloud; you just may not realise it. Google Drive, Dropbox, and online banking are all good examples.

Simply put, cloud computing just means storing and processing data over the internet. Remote servers are networked to provide vast computing resources that would otherwise be restricted to the largest and richest corporations.

You can use cloud-based software from any device with an internet connection, without the costs or hassle of upgrading your systems. It's all part of your subscription.  Our partner, Clear Books, works with a whole range of business systems and payment software. It’s very easy to use and customise as your needs develop.

Cloud accounting offers a better overview of your finances and helps you work with your team, suppliers or customers, allowing you to work smarter and faster. Your data is always securely backed up and you can log in and work with us from anywhere – seeing exactly the same screen as us.

By contrast, traditional accounting software sucks up far too much of your business’ time and effort, with data loss and security implications to worry about. Problems include:

  • Software and data in the system aren't always up-to-date.
  • It only works on one computer and data bounces insecurely from place to place (for example, on a USB drive).
  • Only one user has access. Key people can't access financial and customer details.
  • It's costly and complicated to keep good backups.
  • It's expensive, difficult and time-consuming to upgrade the software.
  • Customer support is expensive and slow.

Technology shouldn’t cause stress or take the fun out of being in business. That’s the last thing you want in your robot helper!

Clear Books: Your Digital Bank Vault

RIFT Accounting knows that, as a small business owner, losing your financial data could mean losing your livelihood. Clear Books uses internet banking levels of security, making it one of the safest ways to work.

Data security is about more than spike-haired “hackers” with tribal tattoos.  With cloud software, if your laptop is stolen, no one without a login can access your account. In the event of a natural disaster or zombie apocalypse, all your information is securely stored off-site so there’s no data loss or down-time. As long as you have access to the internet, you’re still up and running. In addition, you can control users'  levels of access, which is much more secure than the old-fashioned way of emailing your files or sending them out via USB stick.

We take the security of your data very seriously, and follow best practice procedures to secure our servers, including:

  • Firewalls on sensitive services, such as databases.
  • 256bit SSL data encryption.
  • Timely installation of software security patches.
  • Use of strong passwords.

Physical Security

Clear Books is hosted in a secure facility, protected by CCTV cameras and on-site security. Only authorised personnel have access to our IT equipment and all access is logged.

Hosting Facilities

Clear Books is hosted in a state-of-the-art facility with UPS and generator-backed power supply, redundant cooling system and multiple internet connections.

All aspects of the system are monitored, with on-call engineers available 24×7, 365 days a year.

Backup Procedures

We take a snapshot of all customer data on a nightly basis after 6.30pm. Once all data has been dumped, it is transferred to a secure off-site facility for archive storage.

We aim to have a minimum of 7 daily snapshot backups available at all times for disaster recovery purposes.

Access to Information

Only the minimum number of people necessary have permanent high-level access to the servers hosting Clear Books and storing backup data. These include senior engineering personnel and Executive Directors at our hosting partner and sister company, Fubra Limited.

There is a documented internal procedure for the management of access privileges.

Call us on 01233 653006 and see how we can help you today.

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