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      Protecting Your Salesforce Data: A Comprehensive Guide

      Jan 19, 2024

      5 minute read

      By the end of 2025, we’re looking at a whopping 100 zettabytes of data stored up in the cloud! However, as most of your customer data is living on the cloud, you must protect it from threats.

      Cloud data breaches are increasingly common, making the security of customer information a top priority for all organizations. Ensuring data security involves preventing unauthorized access by external users and inappropriate usage by your users.

      In fact, human errors account for 82% of data breaches, it becomes even more important to safeguard data from such errors[i].

      With more than 60% of corporate data stored in cloud-based systems, CRM platforms store and utilize the most business-critical information[ii].

      Surveys indicate that a substantial 75% of businesses are deeply worried about cloud security[iii]. This underscores the urgency to fortify data against potential breaches, particularly within CRM platforms that store over 60% of crucial corporate information.

      Enter Salesforce, a CRM industry leader renowned for its robust security measures. Its security model operates as a fortress, guarding your data against unauthorized access from external and internal sources.

      In this blog post, we’ll explore how you can effectively utilize capabilities within Salesforce to ensure the security of your business data.

      Fundamental Components of Data Security in Salesforce

      Components of Data Security in Salesforce

      Data security in Salesforce is built on three core structures including objects, fields, and records. These fundamental components play a crucial role in storing, organizing, and accessing data within the platform. Here’s how they work:

      Objects: The Foundation of Your Data

      Objects in Salesforce are the cornerstone of your organizational data, much like tables in a traditional database. They serve as the framework upon which your data is structured. These objects are not mere containers; they define the data’s fundamental structure and how it’s related to other data in your organization. For instance, you might have objects for leads, opportunities, or customer accounts. Objects are where the data journey begins.

      Fields: Defining Data Attributes

      Fields, in Salesforce, are the detailed data attributes that make up your objects. They are similar to the columns in a database table but have a broader scope.

      Each field defines a specific piece of information about your data. For instance, in a “Customer Account” object, fields could include “Name,” “Email,” “Phone Number,” and “Address.”

      Fields allow you to precisely capture and categorize data, making them the building blocks of your data’s attributes.

      Records: Individual Data Instances

      Records are where data takes form and becomes meaningful.

      Think of records as individual rows in your data tables. Each record is a unique instance of your data, containing specific and relevant information. In our “Customer Account” example, a record could represent a single customer with their unique name, email, phone number, and address details.

      Records are the lifeblood of your data, embodying real-world entities or events within your organization.

      To secure your data effectively in Salesforce, you must understand these fundamental data structures. They form the basis for implementing robust data security measures, ensuring that the right individuals have access to the right data at the right time.

      With this foundation in place, you can explore the various layers of data security within Salesforce, from object-level controls to field-level and record-level security, providing a comprehensive shield for your data.

      A Brief Overview of the Salesforce Security Model

      Salesforce employs a multi-tiered security approach, comprising Object-Level, Field-Level, and Record-Level security. Each level offers distinct ways to control and secure your data:

      Object-Level Security (Permission Sets and Profiles)

      Object-level security in Salesforce entails control and management of access to specific objects within the platform. It determines which users or profiles can view, create, edit, or delete records for a particular object. These access rights are further refined by permission sets and Profiles.

      Permission Sets: Collections of settings and permissions that determine a user’s capabilities within the system.

      Profiles: A user’s role or job function typically defines their profile. Profiles control access to objects and fields, shaping what a user can and cannot do.

      Furthermore, Field-Level Security (FLS), also managed by Permission Sets and Profiles, governs the visibility and accessibility of specific fields, controlling where and how these fields appear in the application.

      Record-Level Security (Sharing)

      After object and field-level security is established, record-level security regulates access to individual records in objects, ensuring that data within those records is accessible only to authorized users. This level is governed by:

      Organization-Wide Sharing Settings: The first step in configuring record-level security is to define the organization-wide sharing settings. These settings determine the default level of access that users have to each other’s records.

      Ownership: Each record has an owner, and the owner has complete access to it. Hierarchy defines who can access what.

      Role Hierarchy: The role hierarchy works like an organizational chart. Users on the top can see, change, and report on all data owned by or shared with users below them in the hierarchy. If the “Grant Access Using Hierarchies” setting is turned off for an object in Salesforce, only the person who owns a record and users given access by the organization’s default settings can access that record.

      Sharing Rules: These rules allow you to create exceptions to the organization’s default sharing settings for specific user groups.

      Manual Sharing: When certain records need to be shared with a specific group, record owners can manually grant permissions.

      User Sharing: Users can be shared based on their membership in public groups, roles, or territories.

      Additional Tips for Enhanced Data Security in Salesforce

      While Salesforce offers a robust security framework, there are additional measures you can take to fortify your data:

      Multi-Factor Authentication
      Implement multi-factor authentication (MFA) to add an extra layer of security to user logins, ensuring that only authorized individuals gain access.

      Access Restriction
      Use permission sets, profiles, and sharing rules to limit access to data based on the principle of least privilege, ensuring that users only have access to what they truly need.

      Data Encryption
      Protect sensitive data by implementing encryption, safeguarding it from unauthorized access.

      Regular Updates
      Stay proactive about security by keeping your Salesforce software up to date. Regularly install updates and security patches to guard against known vulnerabilities.

      Caution With Third-Party Apps
      When integrating with third-party applications, be selective about the data you share. Only provide these applications with the information they truly require, minimizing potential risks.


      Salesforce offers a powerful and flexible data security model to meet a variety of business needs. While this security model is competitive enough to prevent critical business data from unwanted access, organizations must provide training to stakeholders to take the leverage. Furthermore, by following additional security best practices, you can fortify your data against potential threats, making Salesforce a powerful ally in protecting your organization’s most valuable asset: its data.

      Take Control of Your Salesforce Data Security Today. Talk to Us!

      Whether you have questions, need assistance, or want to discuss anything with Salesforce, our team at Grazitti is ready to assist. Simply drop us a line at [email protected] and we will take it up from there.

      Statistical References:

      [i] Verizon
      [ii] Statista
      [iii] Cloudwards

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