Overcoming the Data Security Challenges in the Cloud
Recent predictions have suggested that global cloud market will grow to more than $190 billion by the end of 2020. With continuous upsurge in the cloud technology, most businesses have joined the running bandwagon of cloud. From storage to data analytics, cloud is bringing down IT costs while providing businesses more agility, scalability and faster time-to-market. However, this increasing cloud adoption calls for strong mitigation of security breaches and risks hovering over the cloud.
Here are some security concerns threatening cloud applications and possible tips to counter attack those risks:
#Lack of Data Encryption is Putting Data at Risk:
Cloud computing enables organization/customer to store data in third-party data centers. Leaving this sensitive and confidential data unencrypted on the cloud makes it vulnerable to online eavesdropping and Man-in-the-Middle attacks. The consequences of these breaches can cost big- from legal fines to loss of customer trust and reputation.
How to Address It
The best approach for avoiding such scenario is to encrypt organization/customer data with appropriate encryption techniques like Secure Socket Layer (SSL). Cloud service providers can also implement a reliable Virtual Private Network tunnel that can provide an encrypted connection to remote off-site employees to maintain smooth communication while maintaining data safety in the organization.
Cloud service providers offer APIs to help IT teams with cloud monitoring, management and orchestration. Now, the security and confidentiality of information depends on the security of API. Weak APIs and interfaces add another layer in the security risks related to accountability, integrity and availability of data.
How to Deal with It
An effective approach to mitigate the risks associated with APIs is- blacklisting risky content and applying schema validation to all incoming data. A thoroughly done penetration testing, API security implementation and separating API development are key factors to consider for protection against rising APIs threats.
Organizations abide by certain regulatory and compliance requirements such as HIPAA guidelines for healthcare information and FERPA for student records. Under these mandates, it is essential for businesses to remain compliant but trends like Bring Your Own Cloud (BYOC), Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) violate these tenets and put the organization in a state of non-compliance.
What to Do
IT teams must ensure strict compliance with regulatory norms by implementing strong protective measures such as perimeter firewalls, intrusion detection and event logging systems. By identifying foreseeable threats, companies can remain vigilant and can protect themselves against any anticipated cyber-threat.
Data breaches in cloud applications result from lax authentication, poor key management and weak passwords. Generally, developers leave cryptographic keys within open source codes which a cyber-criminal can easily access through numerous portals. In addition, lack of multifactor authentication and failure in identity management are other factors that lead businesses to authentication breaches.
How to Prevent This
Businesses can protect against authentication breaches by mechanisms- Two-factor authentication, limiting the number of password trials and locking the user who have exceeded certain number of login attempts. Also, businesses must plan to federate identity management with cloud providers instead of centralizing it into a single repository.
Related Article: Why AWS is the most Preferred Cloud Ecosystem
#Vicious Use of Cloud Services:
Cloud services can be abused to commit nefarious cyber-crimes such as- launching an attack by cracking encryption key, DoS/DDoS attacks, malicious content and phishing emails.
How to Avoid This
Businesses need to make sure that their cloud service providers recognize cloud service abuses and DoS attacks proactively. Also, IT teams can scrutinize network traffic and can make use of flow analytics to minimize DoS attacks.
Rounding It Off:Cloud Computing has become the new normal. Moving to the cloud can do wonders for businesses in terms of efficiency and agility, but understanding the risk involved and having the right security measure in place is essential. Above article describes tips to fight against security breaches in cloud and employing cloud computing for paving the path of your business growth.