Cloud Security Issues and the Role of Managed Cloud Services
The changing demands of business operations have made Cloud Computing rise in popularity in the last few years. Cloud Computing has become one of the fastest growing segment of IT by providing promising business concepts and economic viability. The prevailing recession has also led organizations to seriously ponder over the attributes of Cloud environment that offer best-of-breed business applications and infrastructure resources, all at a comparatively negligible cost. However, as more vital proprietary information is being pooled into the Cloud, masses are overwhelmed with concerns regarding their integrity, and if a cloud environment is safe enough to guarantee it.
Cloud Security, is sure to be one of the first question, asked by enterprises, businesses, and institutions as a take-on to move their online applications, assets and data in the Cloud. Although, there is no doubt that Cloud Computing can be a panacea to all of the perceived IT problems, but migration alone is not one issue to be taken lightly. There are complex considerations to be undertaken by organizations whilst first beginning their journey, and security is to be the priority concern that might become a pitfall in achieving entire organizational goals.
Understanding the Security risks of cloud
Some recent attacks of cyber crime targeted on enterprises that were the accustomed users of the Cloud came to be as a catalyst in Cloud security apprehensions. A series of cyber assaults were made on various banks in the United States which reportedly effected day-to-day transactions by cloaking itself from even some advanced antivirus softwares. As the attacks were traced back to thousands of Cloud data centers, this defiled the infallible reputation of the Cloud. Although, many cyber criminal factions took responsibility of the attack, experts still believe that these incidents occurred more due to some political reasons.
Zendesk too narrated in one of their posts (we’ve been hacked) that they went through a similar situation. Support information of three of their customers was compromised; however, Zendesk was able to quickly take over the situation and make amends. This has been going on for quite some time now, and it seems as if Cloud has become particularly attractive for Cyber Criminals. Feb 2009 also marked Google making an embarrassing apology as its Gmail service went down in Europe while Salesforce.com is still trying to get back on its feet from the attack which hoodwinked an employee into revealing passwords.
It is a fact that Cloud service providers and the users too, need to take a lot of adhesive precautions whilst their data centers get rich. They need to make sure that their data travels in secure channels and when stored, it observes encryption both on the provider and users end. Cloud Security Alliance also recommends users to be aware of the interfaces and provider APIs that interact with Cloud services, as well as integrating security modules throughout their service and activity monitoring policies.
Besides other methods, Managed Cloud Services can also be the key in improving the security barriers of a user’s Cloud environment, but as their data is accessible to the employees of CSPs, they should have an open ground to know and in-trust a particular person who manages and monitors their Cloud environment.
Role of Managed Cloud Services in securing your data
Managed Cloud service is a form of Cloud Computing service that has a sole purpose to save the user’s time. This model of Cloud offers you help to build, architect and manage your Cloud environment. With managed Cloud, you are relieved of the system administrative activities which are then performed by the Cloud experts from your CSP. This means that all your concerns regarding resource provisioning, resource metering, acquiring high security modules, encryption, firewalls, monitoring and more becomes the first take-over priority by your Cloud Provider.
Managed Cloud services have a multitude of advantages. Experts say that many enterprises, that were dependent upon Cloud Computing managed to cut down more that 50% of their IT expenditures by switching to Managed Cloud Services. They also were able to minimize the Security risks that are more than often prevalent in Cloud, and achieved hardened security protocols that went iron hide on their infrastructure.
As its experts, who look after you, your Cloud infrastructure undergoes timely audits, patches, maintenance, integrations and Security QAs so that you can garner a worry-less Cloud experience. In addition to that, managed Cloud service providers place their Cloud experts by your side 24/7 so that you may get a non-stop uninterrupted support.
The comprehensive security features that Managed Cloud services provide you are:
Protection from unauthorized access
High level encryption that guaranteed via industry leading technology
Connections to enable secure remote accesses
High level integrations to protect any unauthorized hindrance and intrusion
Electing cloud services via a managed Cloud service can grant you way more benefits that you need to keep your business afloat; however, it is essential to think and shop carefully while you are on the aisle that has managed Cloud service provider labeled on every other package. Once you get your perfect Cloud service provider its necessary that you should address these security issues with them, but this should not be a deal breaker. After all, Cloud Computing offers each trait way too many benefits to miss.
By Pere Hospital,
Pere (CISSP & OSCP) is the CTO and co-founder of Cloudways Ltd. He has over two decades of experience in IT Security, Risk Analysis and Virtualization Technologies. You can follow Pere on Twitter at @phospital, orlearn more about Cloudways at www. Cloudways.com
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