Cloud security is total protection ways of data, applications, and infrastructures on cloud computing platforms through security measures, whether it’s a public, private or hybrid cloud. These security measures include authentication of users and devices, access control for data and resources, and protection of data privacy.
Cloud services market is growing
Cloud covers all virtualized and scalable sources that provide hosting of all applications on the Internet with pay as you go strategy. Public, private, and hybrid cloud services are the three primary types of cloud environments. Over the last 10 years, the cloud became popular as it provides rapid deployment, flexibility, low up-front costs, and scalability.
More businesses are now shifting to the cloud for data management, storage, and analysis. According to Gartner’s latest research, the worldwide market for public cloud services will grow 17% in 2020, with software as a service (SaaS) remaining the largest market segment.
Does the word “cloud” feel insecure?
“Is the cloud secure?” is the most common question about cloud security. According to the 2020 Cloud Security Report of Check Point Software Technologies, 68% of enterprises today regard the misconfiguration of assets in the cloud as one of the biggest contributors to cloud security threats. Almost 75% of enterprises are either overly concerned or extremely concerned about how secure they are in the cloud.
Data security, identity and access management (IAM), governance, data retention (DR) and business continuity (BC) planning, legal compliance are the main categories of cloud security. So, cloud computing security should cover the protection of applications, physical networks, data storage, data servers, computer virtualization frameworks, operating systems, middleware, data, and end-user hardware.
While cloud computing is growing as a primary method for both workplace and individual use, the need to manage the threats and vulnerabilities that go along with cloud deployments is a must. There are several security issues for cloud computing that are dependent on the cloud deployment model. Cloud Security Alliance (CSA) classified the top threats to cloud computing as abuse and nefarious use of cloud computing; insecure interfaces and APIs, malicious insiders, shared technology issues, data loss or leakage, account or service hijacking, and unknown risk proﬁle.
Cloud service models
There are three main delivery models of cloud computing: Software (SaaS), Platform (PaaS), and Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS). They differ in terms of the levels of consumer`s control over cloud resources and security. The delivery model chosen directly reflects on how an organization deals with emerging security issues.
In SaaS, as the level of integrated security is relatively high, consumers cannot control and manage the underlying cloud infrastructure including network, servers, storage, and operating systems. With PaaS, the consumer can control the deployed applications, but he still cannot control and manage the underlying cloud infrastructure. IaaS provides the consumer with the greatest control over cloud resources and security.
Why is cloud security different?
The cloud provider and the customer share the responsibility of cloud security. While cloud providers host services on their servers via Internet, customers also need to safeguard cloud accounts from unauthorized access and more. While traditional environments usually use a parameter security access model, cloud environments bypass traditional perimeter defenses as they are highly connected. Besides dissolving parameters, as cloud hosts resources delivered to a user via software, cloud security needs to check workloads, APIs to prevent system corruption and data loss.
All the risks of cloud computing adoption and utilization are related to the security of the data and its confidentiality. Data may be lost, collected, and used by unauthorized parties. In addition to this, the lack of interoperability standards also endangers the data stored in the cloud.
Sophisticated threats and other attacks like Advanced Persistent Threats (APTs) target vulnerabilities in computer stack to evade network defenses. The cloud potentially creates new ways for attacks to take place. Moreover, cloud-based frameworks have helped offload costs of system development and upkeep, but also remove some control from users.
Cloud security challenges
There is no perimeter in the cloud. That is why the cloud is defined as risky. While traditional focused on protecting the perimeter, cloud environments are highly connected which means insecure APIs and account hijacks.
These can cause real problems. Cloud cybersecurity professionals need to shift to a data-centric approach. Risks of cloud-based infrastructure, internal threats due to human error, external threats can be classified as cloud security risks.
How do I secure my cloud?
Finding some homogeneity across tools and consolidating systems, patch levels over time, especially in a dynamic cloud-driven architecture are some of the main steps to prove invaluable in maintaining system security.
On the side of data protection, there are several ways to protect data on the cloud. Encryption, configuration, basic cybersecurity tips like using strong passwords, modifying permissions, using anti-malware software, avoid accessing your data on public Wi-Fi are some of the popular ways.
One of the best ways to secure your cloud computing systems is encryption that covers communications encryption with the cloud in their entirety, particularly sensitive data encryption, end-to-end encryption of all data that is uploaded to the cloud.
Misconfiguration errors can cause data breaches in the cloud. Therefore, configuration is another powerful practice in cloud security to prevent basic vulnerabilities. Basic cybersecurity tips like using strong passwords, protecting all the devices, using anti-virus, back up regularly should also be built into any cloud implementation. It is also a good protection way to check your cloud provider’s security because you share the cloud responsibility with your cloud provider.
Top cloud security companies
|Top cloud security companies|
|CloudPassage||CloudPassage’s Halo platform is a cloud workload protection platform that is suitable for organizations of any size.|
|FireEye||FireEye’s services provide cloud server workload protection against threats.|
|McAfee||McAfee has a broad set of cloud security capabilities, including CASB, data loss prevention (DLP) and threat prevention.|
|Qualys||The Qualys cloud platform has multiple modules that can enable different facets of cloud security, including compliance, vulnerability scanning and cloud workload protection.|
|Palo Alto Networks||Palo Alto Networks has one of the most comprehensive cloud native security platforms in the market, with deep capabilities to help organizations with workload security.|
|Symantec||Symantec has multiple cloud security functions within its portfolio, including workload protection and CASB.|
|Trend Micro||Trend Micro is well positioned as a leader in hybrid cloud security, helping organization unify policies across both on-premises and public cloud deployments.|
|VMware||VMware has multiple capabilities for cloud security, including its secure state and Cloudhealth products.|
To sum up, while security concerns on the cloud are continuing, the growing shift to the cloud also keeps going. To cope with security challenges, companies and individuals that use cloud computing have to take precautions for possible attacks on the cloud not to lose money and prevent data loss.