09 Nov, 2020

Why You Should Assess Security Controls In The Cloud

by nVisium

While cloud computing as a phrase appeared as early as 1996 in a Compaq internal document according to Wikipedia, the first true cloud computing platform was released in 2006 and the movement to cloud based computing has gained strength significantly since then. As you can imagine, this has also increased the interest in new security vulnerabilities opening up to cyber criminals.

Why Security Controls Are Required In The Cloud

The short answer to why security controls are required in the clous is that cloud computing has become ubiquitous for corporate computing. According to techjury:

  • 81% of all enterprises have a multi-cloud strategy already laid out or in the works.
  • By the end of 2020, 67% of enterprise infrastructure will be cloud-based.
  • Additionally, 82% of the workload will reside on the cloud.
  • As a result, more than 40 zettabytes of data will be flowing through cloud servers and networks.
  • It makes sense, as even today the average person uses 36 cloud-based services every single day.
  • Amazon web services has the largest cloud computing market share in at 32%.
  • Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS) expected to grow in adoption to 56% by 2020.

Unfortunately, not all cloud platforms are created equal, and each has unique characteristics and potential security vulnerabilities. The three primary cloud platforms include:

  • Amazon Web Services (AWS): is the world’s most comprehensive and broadly adopted cloud platform, offering over 175 fully featured services from data centers globally. Millions of customers—including the fastest-growing startups, largest enterprises, and leading government agencies—are using AWS to lower costs, become more agile, and innovate faster.
  • Microsoft Azure: is more than 200 products and cloud services designed to help you bring new solutions to life—to solve today’s challenges and create the future. Build, run, and manage applications across multiple clouds, on-premises, and at the edge, with the tools and frameworks of your choice.
  • Google Cloud: is a platform that delivers over 90 information technology services (aka products), which businesses, IT professionals, and developers can leverage to work more efficiently, gain more flexibility, and/or enable a strategic advantage.
By understanding the unique requirements of each platform you can establish a set of security controls to help identify and eliminate risks.

Eliminating Cloud Computing Risks

Exploiting vulnerabilities in services, software, and developer tools is the primary approach hackers take to attack high profile complex targets in cloud computing infrastructure and systems. Level-setting cloud security through assessments, continuous security testing, configuration management, and automated remediation gives you a full lifecycle approach to defending your elastic enterprise.

Cloud application infrastructure and architecture are the foundation for all security controls and data protection. Security should be integrated early on in the design and development to be the most effective, as well as at regular intervals as the architecture adapts and matures. By understating this, you can:

  • Complete review of all cloud systems: Performing a deep review of the architecture, services and deployed application stacks will provide careful guidance for strengthening your ability to withstand attacks. You will need to analyze the configuration, architecture and design, and custom code to understand the attack surface in order to provide remediation recommendations to strengthen your defenses. This should also include encryption and data storage, secure communications, authentication, and access control and identity management in order to be comprehensive.

  • Mitigate vulnerabilities and flaws: Developing secure infrastructure and architecture from the ground up will maximize your organization’s investment in security, as integrating further down the line can be both a costly and time-consuming endeavor. Building in the cloud security controls upfront will facilitate the discovery of potential risks early and allow for the mitigation of vulnerabilities and design/coding flaws.
Bottomline, organizations significantly reduce risk and are able to identify and remediate vulnerabilities faster when they perform continuous benchmarking with penetration testing and ongoing evaluations of their cloud security posture.

Cloud security Assessments Made Simple

Understanding how to attack and defend Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS) and Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS) technologies is paramount to success. By selecting a trusted partner to provide actionable remediation guidance for improving security across AWS, Azure and Google Cloud, you will be strengthening your IT security strategy significantly.

nVisium empowers organizations to eliminate application and cloud security vulnerabilities before cyber threats exploit them with proven in-depth security assessments, remediation and training programs. Our experienced team of security-savvy developers and engineers guide organizations to build best practices with high ROI into their engineering and secure development lifecycles across applications, operating systems, networks, mobile, cloud and IoT through services, software solutions and R&D unique to business operations and compliance initiatives. Additionally, nVisium provides a fully managed platform for tracking and measuring performance as well as instructor-led and online training.

Let us work with your development and security teams to implement cloud security controls that encompass continuous security reviews and full integration into the development process for Amazon Web Services, Microsoft Azure and Google Cloud. Give us a call to better understand how you can more effectively handle cloud security assessments in order to improve privacy and security for you users, or better yet schedule a consultation today.

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