Best Practices for Cloud Security in 2022

Enterprise Security Magazine | Wednesday, January 12, 2022

Cloud security is the fastest-growing segment of the information security technology and services market, and remote working and digital business acceleration innovations are fascinating

FREMONT, CA: Nowadays, cloud computing is more than just another business case alternative. It has become an efficient method for reducing expenses, ensuring constant availability, and minimizing downtime. The corporate network was previously only accessible from offices and workspaces with firewalls and other security measures.

The emergence of cloud applications, which enable remote access to corporate applications, documents, and services, has changed this. Ninety-two percent of organizations' IT environments are at least partially hosted in the cloud today, per an IDG survey. However, cloud services present the challenge and risk of cloud data security, necessitating the development of new security tools and procedures.

For businesses evaluating the public cloud, security has been a primary concern. As organizations migrate from offline to cloud-based networks, security must take precedence, putting more sensitive data at risk.

Typically, cloud service providers are responsible for ensuring the physical security of data centers and the cybersecurity of their systems. However, it appears insecure to store data or run applications on infrastructure that the organization does not directly manage.

The following best practices can help organizations safeguard their cloud environments and prevent sensitive data and applications from falling into the wrong hands.

Selecting the most suitable cloud service provider

With more external IT teams and many options, choosing a cloud service provider is necessary based on specific requirements. Compliance with a cloud service provider's security certificates and regulations is the first step in selecting the best provider. Then, evaluate the organization's precise security objectives and compare the security measures and application and data protection mechanisms offered by various service providers.

Ask specific questions on the use cases, industry, and regulatory requirements, and express other concerns in detail. Service providers should ensure that their architectural platform complies with industry and organization regulations. Another essential factor to consider is inquiring about the level and method of support services.

Understanding the model of shared responsibility

In private data centers, the organization manages all data security concerns. However, providers share a portion of this burden in the public cloud. Clearly defining which security operations each party is responsible for can lead to successfully implementing security in cloud environments.

The shared responsibility security model varies by the service provider and infrastructure as a service (IaaS) or platform as a service (PaaS) usage. A clear-cut shared responsibility model ensures a system's security is completely covered. In the absence of clarity regarding shared responsibilities, certain areas of the cloud system may be unprotected and vulnerable to external threats.

Implementing identity management and access control

Identity and access management (IAM) is critical to prevent unauthorized access to vital enterprise systems, assets, and data in a heterogeneous technology environment. Identity and access management provides adequate security for cloud environments by performing various security functions, including authentication, authorization, storage provisioning, and verification.

This authentication system helps manage access rights by verifying that the correct person with the appropriate permissions is accessing the cloud applications' stored data. Physical or digital verification mechanisms, such as public key infrastructure, may be used. In addition, setting access levels controls how much information a user can modify or view after gaining access.

Encrypting data

One of the primary advantages of cloud-based applications is that data storage and transfer are simplified. However, organizations must not simply upload data to the cloud and forget about it. Encryption is an additional step for protecting data uploaded to the cloud.

Encryption conceals information from unauthorized users by translating it into a different form or code. Organizations should not only encrypt their data in the public cloud but also in transit when it is most vulnerable. Cloud service providers or third-party vendors can assist with these encryption services.

It is optimal to find encryption options that integrate with the existing workflow so that no additional precautions are required to ensure compliance.

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