Finding a cloud service provider that meets the needs of your organization is one of the most proactive steps you can take to enhancing operations at any level. Because of its myriad benefits, the cloud is where business happens, and it's becoming an increasingly popular option across the board, with businesses, individuals and even governments hopping in. But there are many factors to consider when you're looking into which cloud to join – chief among them security. One of the main reasons businesses are flocking to the enterprise cloud is because of the security risks inherent in the public cloud. Here are some of the risks the public cloud poses:

Shared access: Unfortunately, the central feature of the public cloud is also its main weakness. In a research report on public cloud computing, analyst Krishnan Subramanian pointed out that the open nature of the public cloud heightens the risk of third-party infringement on private data. Additionally, the multi-tenancy of the public cloud means that businesses may have to contend with other users for storage space.

Accessibility concerns: For businesses, having constant access to their data is imperative. That's one of the primary reasons businesses are flocking to the cloud – it provides data access anytime, anywhere. But within the public cloud, a communications barrier exists between customers and their cloud service provider. That means that in the case of an outage, a business will not be in control of its data until the cloud is restored.

Data retention: Businesses looking to secure highly privileged information in the cloud want the ability to move or delete that information without risk. But in the public cloud a move or deletion can lead to remnants of the data remaining in the system – and therefore posing a significant security risk. This risk is minimized in the enterprise cloud.

Because of the security risks posed by the public cloud, businesses aren't the only ones flocking to the enterprise cloud. The Social Security Administration is also looking to the private cloud as a place to secure its highly privileged information, according to InformationWeek. In a Jan. 14 Request for Information, the SSA said it is attracted to the private cloud because of its ability to "automate many processes currently done manually" while retaining the security measures to keep data safe from attack.