No matter the type of business that you own, security should always be at the top of your mind. At the same time, you also have to rely on affordable mobile apps to keep your business running and thriving. But, which of these essential apps are the most secure, and cost-effective?

According to CipherCloud, 88% of cloud of mobile applications are unsanctioned or not monitored by IT. In order to be nimble enough to run a business on the go and also comply to most security needs, here's a list of five secure apps that you need to use for running a small business that are also very affordable.

1. Google Apps For Business

Google has obviously made a name for itself as the leading search engine in the world. But, the company has also done an excellent job of creating apps that should be used by any business owner. For starters, there's Gmail. Not only is yet one of the best email options for professionals, it has superior spam protection, no ads and up to 30GB of storage.

Besides Gmail, there's Google Drive, which can used to create word documents which you can store in the cloud and share with team members to complete projects. Other features include Calendars and Hangouts for when you need to communicate with people face-to-face. Even better, you can get started with Google Apps for only $5 per month.

But, what about security?

Since Google hosts the apps in its own data centers, the company can respond to issues quickly. Furthermore, Google makes sure that each of its products and services go through a series or security reviews. Google also states that, "Unauthorized parties cannot access your data. Your competitors cannot access your data, and vice versa. In fact, all user accounts are protected via this virtual lock and key that ensures that one user cannot see another user's data."

2. Xero

Accounting and bookkeeping are a huge part of a business, and that's putting it lightly. Thankfully, there are a number of incredible invoicing and bookkeeping software/tools that can easily assist business owners with their accounting needs. When it comes to security, however, Xero his a pretty safe option.

Xero was so confident in it's security features that it boasted, "Our software has never been breached and we have never lost any customer data." Since over 400,000 small business owners trust Xero, there's probably a little truth to that bold statement.

As for the features, Xero comes equipped with easy-to-use invoicing, integration with more than 300 other apps, online accounting, bank reconciliation, payroll, taxes and much more. With plans that start at $9/month, you can't beat the features, and peace of mind, that Xero provides.

3. Salesforce

If you're looking to best your competitor's at customer service relations and sales in this ever-changing marketplace, then you have to use Salesforce. This powerful cloud tool gives you the ability to boost sales through it's leading CRM application, provides customer service solutions, create personalized customer journeys and generate an engaged community. Basic plans begin at $25 per month, which is a great deal.

According to it website, here is a glimpse of Salesforce's security features: 24-hour manned security, including foot patrols and perimeter inspections; Biometric scanning for access; Concrete vaults for fiber entry; Connection to the Salesforce environment is via TLS cryptographic protocols, using global step-up certificates, ensuring that our users have a secure connection from their browsers to our service; and Perimeter firewalls and edge routers block unused protocols

4. Passible/KeePass

If you're like most business owners you probably have a lot of passwords floating around. So, wouldn't it be awesome if there was a tool that securely kept your passwords in one location? Of course there is.

Passible is an app for iPhone and iPad users which stores everything from your website's login to credit card information. Once this is information is stored it will be automatically be filled--which means no longer remembering all of those numbers and letters or losing that piece of paper with them written on it. Passible states that your information "is safe by using the same AES-256 encryption mechanism as militaries, banks, and governments," as well as theft protection. That's pretty outstanding for a free download.

If you're an Android user you could give KeePass a shot. This open source password manager stores "your passwords in one database, which is locked with one master key or a key file." This means that "you only have to remember one single master password or select the key file to unlock the whole database" which "are encrypted using the best and most secure encryption algorithms currently known (AES and Twofish)." Like Passible, KeePass is a free.

5. Box

When you're a business owner collaboration is a pretty big deal. While you can use Google Docs to share and collaborate on documents, Box is another powerful and secure option for editing, sharing and collaborating on Office documents. Whether you're using the desktop platform or mobile app, Box allows you to manage and access your files safely from anywhere.

If you're device is stolen or lost, you can protect your content with "passcode locks and remote logout you can mitigate security risks from lost phones or exiting employees." In addition to that, Box "works with leading MDM vendors to offer additional security, visibility, configuration and device management." They also have been one of the best softwares that I've seen to compete against malware.

Personal plans are free with Starter plans beginning at $5/month.

These are some of the most secure apps that I've found to help your business be secure and flourish online. What other tools have you found that are very secure to help your business or startup succeed online?

Published on: Mar 16, 2015
The opinions expressed here by Inc.com columnists are their own, not those of Inc.com.