By Robert Smith
September 14, 2020
Cloud is not an emerging trend anymore. It is a mature business model for IT organizations to stay competitive in today’s challenging digital landscape.
Cloud is not only redefining the IT landscape but also how security measures are developed and deployed.
The migration to the cloud has forced organizations to rethink security and privacy from scratch.
Approaches to robust security in the cloud are quite different from those in an on-premise IT environment. As a result, your current security expertise may not be entirely relevant to your new, cloud-based environment.
So, before moving mission-critical assets to the cloud, organizations don’t need just security but robust security that they can trust and monitor.
Here are four essential aspects that help develop robust cloud security, so that your migration to the cloud lives up to its full commercial and strategic promise.
As data moves from a company’s secure perimeter to the cloud, organizations must move to a layered model that ensures the proper isolation of data in the shared, multitenant cloud. The data must be encrypted using methodologies such as cryptography and tokenization and secured by controls like multi-factor authentication and digital certificates.
Monitoring tools must also be deployed to reinforce security tools such as intrusion detection, Denial-of-Service (Dos) attack monitoring, and network traceability tools.
It’s imperative for organizations to stay abreast and adopt security innovations to gain complete visibility of their data and information.
Organizations must employ compute-level security for end systems, managed services, and various workloads and applications in the cloud environment.
The first component of compute-based security is automated vulnerability management, which involves identifying and preventing security loopholes across the entire application lifecycle.
The second component is providing operational security for anything considered to be a compute system or compute workload.
Robust cloud security requires automatic and continuous inspection and monitoring for detecting any anomalous or malicious activity.
Securing networks in the cloud is different from securing a traditional network. Network security in cloud computing involves four principles:
a) Micro segmentation or isolation of zones, workloads, and applications using layers of firewall
b) Network controls for traffic flow down to the user level
c) Applications should use end-to-end transport-level encryption
d) Using encapsulation protocols such as SSH, IPSEC, SSL while deploying a virtual private cloud
In addition to these principles, organizations must deploy Network Performance Management (NPM) tools to gain access to monitor network performance and ensure that the cloud service provider is on par with the Service Level Agreements (SLA).
A robust Identity and Access Management strategy is essential for a successful migration to the cloud as it provides a cost-effective, agile, and highly flexible integrated access solution.
IAM security framework comprises of five domains of identification, authentication, authorization, access governance, and accountability.
It allows IT administrators to authorize who can access specific resources, giving the organization full control and visibility to manage cloud resources centrally.
These four pillars are essential for developing comprehensive cloud security. However, it’s crucial for organizations to understand their cloud provider’s security architecture in terms of firewalls, intrusion detection techniques, and industry standards and certifications. This helps the organization align its own security architecture with the Cloud Service Provider’s (CSPs) architecture constraints.
Moreover, organizations must provide training to the employees and create awareness of the security risks associated with cloud migration. Developing a culture of constant vigilance is one of the easiest and most cost-effective approaches for securing cloud data.