Checklist: ensure the data security of your Salesforce applications


Mitigate the risks associated with Salesforce apps and safeguard your organization’s sensitive information.

When it comes to Salesforce, the focus on data security extends beyond the platform itself. For developers, admins, and app installers who leverage the power of third-party apps from the Salesforce AppExchange, ensuring the safety of data becomes paramount. 

This article aims to guide professionals installing these apps into their Salesforce on what to check and ensure regarding data safety. By following the best practices outlined here; you can mitigate the risks associated with these apps and safeguard your organization’s sensitive information.

Salesforce Integrations and Security Risks

Salesforce’s robust integrations with third-party applications pose security risks, as these applications may lack the same level of security measures. Careful evaluation and security measures are crucial when integrating third-party apps to reduce the possibility of data breaches. Additionally, integrating Salesforce with other cloud-based services increases the risk of data breaches across multiple systems if one system is compromised.

The users of Salesforce may also contribute to security risks, whether intentionally or unintentionally, such as sharing sensitive data or mishandling access privileges. Security measures like two-factor authentication and regular monitoring of user roles are necessary to mitigate these risks.

Before you install an app: checklist for data safety measures

Before installing any third-party app from the Salesforce AppExchange, it is crucial to investigate its data safety measures thoroughly. Understanding the potential vulnerabilities and risks associated with these apps is essential for maintaining a secure Salesforce environment. By proactively identifying and addressing these risks, you can prevent data breaches and protect your valuable information.

Here are key factors to consider when assessing the data safety of third-party apps:

1. Compliance with GDPR and other data protection laws

App installers must first confirm with application providers if they are compliant with relevant data protection laws, such as the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). This involves securely storing and handling customer data according to legal requirements. 

If your organization operates within the European Union, you must ensure that your customer data in the application is stored within the region or in a location approved by the European Commission. Reviewing privacy policies regularly is important to protect yourself further. 

2. Refraining from storing data

To minimize the risk of data breaches, app installers should take into consideration how app providers consider storing customer data in volatile memory, such as Random Access Memory (RAM). This type of memory is wiped clean when the computer or device is powered off, meaning those without permission cannot permanently store and access sensitive information. 

Additionally, you have to make sure that the application provider has employed a few additional precautions to further protect their customers’ data: 

  • Ensured all network connections are secure and encrypted.  
  • Provides access controls for employee accounts, so you can grant access only to those who need it for their job duties. 
  • Regularly audits systems to ensure all security measures are properly updated and maintained. 
  • Employs multi-factor authentication for any areas that require extra security. 

3. Data secured with multi-layer security measures

One security risk can ruin your business. Secure HTTP connections such as HTTPS are essential when transferring data with Salesforce Application Programming Interface (API). HTTPS encrypts the data sent between the client and server, preventing any sensitive information from being accessed without permission or tampered with. 

Multi-layer security measures should be implemented by the application provider to ensure greater security for Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) services. This could include requiring user credentials and permission to access the app provider’s intranet and cloud server before granting access to shared resources. Even biometric access systems should be considered. 

Ensuring that these factors are in place gives vital protection against any potential security threats and unauthorized access.

App installers should verify if the application providers can implement robust security policies and procedures. These should include regularly scanning for vulnerabilities, implementing data encryption protocols, and auditing user access to ensure only authorized personnel can view sensitive data. 

By taking the time to set up multi-layer security measures and following best practices for secure data transfers, application providers should ensure their Salesforce applications are protected from malicious activity.

Lastly, a VPN is another layer of security that can be added to protect data between two remote locations. It creates a secure connection over a public network, allowing users to send and receive data as if their devices were directly connected to a private network. 

Using a VPN, all data transmitted between the user’s device and the Salesforce server is encrypted, preventing unauthorized access or interception.

5. Information security certifications in place

Finally, it is pivotal to confirm that the service providers have obtained credible security certifications, such as ISO27001 or TISAX. This demonstrates a commitment to the best information security practices and helps protect customer data from potential risks and threats. 

These certifications provide independent verification that your app provider has implemented appropriate security controls and complies with industry standards and regulations.

Bottom line

Salesforce is a widely-used platform for managing customer relationships and business operations. However, its popularity makes it a prime target for cyber-attacks and data breaches. Organizations must take proactive steps to ensure their system remains secure and their sensitive data is protected. 

An important part of this is verifying, before installing any third-party app, that its provider has taken all the necessary steps to ensure robust data protection – the way described above.

At Documill, we understand the importance of data security and offer solutions that integrate seamlessly with Salesforce while providing an additional layer of protection for your sensitive data. 

Documill provides innovative solutions that help businesses streamline their sales processes by making them document-centric and online. We offer pre-defined workflows and task management features facilitating collaborative document creation and customizable document automation. 

By integrating with Salesforce, Documill’s solutions empower enterprises to digitize their core sales processes, allowing them to save time and increase productivity.

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