The Challenges and Strategies of Cloud Security Services
Concerns about security have always been a major factor that has been hindering the cloud adoption. Although there is a vast improvement in the cloud security services, some of the practices being adopted in the public cloud may not always work well for all. However, this does not mean the benefits of the cloud can be ignored and must be abandoned.
In the cloud environment, security is a two-sided affair. A business just cannot expect the cloud providers to take care of the internal applications. The service providers take responsibility for some aspects of the IT while the clients must ensure safety measures from their side too.
Cloud security is a joint responsibility:
There are a few factors the clients must contribute to have effective and safe cloud security services. These include
Ignorance and negligence: Organizations do the mistake of not taking adequate steps to protect their applications and information and the consequences can sometimes leave them shattered with huge losses in clientele as well as money.
Staff training: Human lapses do occur. All the employees and any person associated with the company must be provided adequate training in security aspects. They must learn to create strong passwords, ensure they download applications from popular secure sites etc.
Encryption: Encryption of data is mandatory. The data must be encrypted both while in transit and in motion. It is, during the migration process or while being distributed across the servers, that it is most vulnerable to cyber-attacks.
Delete data on completion of contracts:
One of the important things that an organization must ensure with the service providers as part of cloud security services is adopting a scheduled data destruction policy. when a contract is terminated between a service provider and client, they usually tend to ignore taking care of the data that is lying unattended on the servers somewhere. Usually, the cloud providers replicate the data for continuity and availability. The two parties must plan why, how, and when the deletion must be done.
There are two methods of cloud security services that is put into practice to address the concerns of the security issues in the cloud. One is the development of specific tools, which in fact is an extension of the tools that are used in the traditional web hosting platform like anti-virus, anti-malware, and firewalls. There are devices like the biometric card scanners, identity management tools, network segmentation, and cloud web application firewall (WAF)etc.
The second process is the SECaaS (Security as a Service). It is a method of safeguarding the users from several cyber threats like malware, data theft, virus etc through a cloud subscription model. It serves ideally for the small businesses that use the cloud but lack the expertise to secure their infrastructure and assets.
Cloud security services have seen a tremendous growth with new technologies and practices like the IAM (Identity and Access Management) and SIEM (Security Information and Event Management).
1.) So far as IAM is concerned, the techniques being put into use include strong encryption, multi-factor authentication where the users must prove their identity through multiple passwords to reduce the risk of credential compromise.
2.) As for SIEM, it is a tool that combines the two functions of Security Information Management (SIM) and Security Event Management (SEM).
3.) The KMIP (Key Management Interoperability Protocol) is an easy way to manage the cryptographic keys that come in different kinds including digital certificates, symmetrical keys, asymmetrical keys, authentication tokens etc.
Security is still the most critical aspect of the cloud environment. An effective strategy for organizations is to adopt a hybrid cloud architecture which should see an increase in the cloud adoption.