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Cloud Security – What You Need to Know

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Cloud Security

What is Cloud Security?

Cloud security, consists of a set of policies, controls, procedures and technologies that work together to protect cloud-based systems, data and infrastructure. These security measures are configured to protect data, support regulatory compliance and protect customers’ privacy as well as setting authentication rules for individual users and devices. From authenticating access to filtering traffic, it can be configured to the exact needs of the business. And because these rules can be configured and managed in one place, administration overheads are reduced and IT teams empowered to focus on other areas of the business.

This form of security includes the ecosystem of people, processes, policies, and technology that protect data and applications that operate in the cloud. It’s consultants examine how an enterprise processes and stores data and then craft a custom data-governance protocol for comprehensive protection. Professional security assessments and penetration testing are instrumental to helping ensure cloud-service providers meet government compliance to responsibly protect your valuable data.

The way it is delivered will depend on the individual cloud provider or the current security solutions in place. However, implementation of cloud security processes should be a joint responsibility between the business owner and solution provider.

Top Security Threats:

cloud security threatsCloud providers are a prime target for malevolent hackers. Experts at the Cloud Security Alliance have identified the following 12 critical issues: (ranked in order of severity per survey results) referred to as the “Treacherous 12”:

  • Data Breaches
  • Weak Identity, Credential and Access Management
  • Insecure Application Programming Interfaces (APIs)
  • System and Application Vulnerabilities
  • Account Hijacking
  • Malicious Insiders
  • Advanced Persistent Threats (APTs)
  • Data Loss
  • Insufficient Due Diligence
  • Abuse and Nefarious Use of Cloud Services
  • Denial of Service
  • Shared Technology Issues

Benefits of Cloud Security:

  1. Protection against DDoS. Distributed denial of service attacks are on the rise, focusing on measures to stop huge amounts of traffic aimed at a company’s cloud servers is important. This entails monitoring, absorbing and dispersing DDoS attacks to minimize risk.
  2. Data security. In the ever-increasing era of data breaches, a cloud security solution has security protocols in place to protect sensitive information and transactions. This prevents a third party from eavesdropping or tampering with data being transmitted.
  3. Regulatory compliance. These solutions help companies in regulated industries by managing and maintaining enhanced infrastructures for compliance and to protect personal and financial data.
  4. Flexibility. A cloud computing solution provides you with the security you need whether you’re turning up or down capacity. You have the flexibility to avoid server crashes during high traffic periods by scaling up your cloud solution. Then when the high traffic is over, you can scale back down to reduce costs.
  5. High availability and support. Most cloud application companies offer constant support for a company’s assets. This includes live monitoring 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, and every day of the year. Redundancies are built-in to ensure your company’s website and applications are always online.

Cloud Security Best Practices:

  • Cloud Security Best PracticesDetermine which data matters – Understand which data sets are most important to your business and prioritize control and governance of that data. Trying to protect everything uniformly doesn’t work. Organizations need to allocate their resources and focus their security on the data that really matters.
  • Break down the silos – Asset, configuration and change management and how it affects your organization when applying security controls is vital. You need to understand what your organization has, how it’s configured and how it changes. Relationship building across IT silos is extremely important. By ensuring coordination between teams such as CTO and DevOps, organizations can ensure reliable security.
  • Choose cloud providers carefully – Cloud vendors realize the mission-critical importance of security to their operations so many of them can do an even better job than your internal teams. However, not every vendor is the same, so CISOs should help their organizations’ line-of-business and other IT groups to choose providers wisely. In the cloud, even though IT doesn’t control the infrastructure, it doesn’t mean they can’t control the data.

To read more best practices check out this article “19 Cloud Security Best Practices for 2019” – By McAfee

Which Path is Right for You?

Sometimes the best infrastructure for a site or app requires both cloud and dedicated environments. A true hybrid cloud environment—so you can connect public cloud, private cloud, and dedicated hardware, to create the best fit for your specific needs. You can read more about the cloud options here.

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