The scramble for digitization has kept many businesses on their toes. Some are moving fast into the digital direction, while others are taking their time trying to learn everything that’s new to them. In the middle of all these, many are also giving more value to cloud services and what they can offer to different enterprises.
There are companies that are slowly transferring all their sensitive operations and data to the cloud. This vast data network, which can be accessed only over the Internet, has made a lot of waves, so much so that in 2015, Gartner issued a forecast that indicated a continuous increase in cloud services expenses all the way until 2019. This growth is expected to peak this year, and this can be clearly seen in the mad dash for digitization and cloud computing services.
While this is seen as a positive direction for many companies, it also presents a number of challenges, the most important of which is security.
When you talk about cloud security, you are talking about an entirely different thing compared to security for digital platforms or any on-premise datacenter. The cloud is a separate environment; therefore, it requires several challenges that are not common when compared to traditional IT security. Thus, it is important to work with or on security strategies that are intended primarily for it.
First off, though, it is essential to understand the challenges in cloud security. Primarily, they are divided into three:
- data protection,
- breach of data and
- user authentication.
One of the main issues of cloud security is keeping “in transit” and “at rest” data well protected. Since cloud computing usually involves third party service providers, sensitive data should be protected. As such, data should, at all times, be encrypted.
Because the cloud is one big warehouse full of sensitive information, data breach is a constant threat. There may also be instances when you will have to deal with disasters (whether through human error or technical problem) that can be destructive to all the data in the cloud. It is important for business to be prepared for instances like these.
These three are some of the major reasons why cloud security is at the core of every business priority each year. The IT industry, practitioners and experts regularly come up with cloud security measures as well. Here are some that are trending – or expected to trend – this year.
- Cloud security solutions from startups. Since cloud security is becoming more than just a requirement for businesses, it is important for it to continue evolving and improving. As such, the door is open for innovative startup cloud security services providers. While some of the big players continue to make their mark in the industry, the smaller and newer ones are also busy coming up with their own innovative solutions. Many vendors have come up with solutions for various customers, including major ones like Windows.
- Serverless frameworks will continue to rise. What this means is that there will be no need for IT departments to deal with or worry about managing a virtual machine or an OS. A good example is the Lambda of Amazon Web Services.
- Cloud Access Security Brokers or CASBs is a possible solution for managing data flow. What CASBs do is provide data protection and cloud adoption with the help of a tokenization gateway or an encryption. What primarily happens is that you will be able to receive information about who accesses the data, as well as where and when the data were accessed.
- Transfer of security centers into the control plane. With security features now in the control plane, IT departments will now have better access to information exposing risks and vulnerabilities. There will be real-time network updates, too.
- Credit card companies have been using tokenization for years. It has now also become an important security tool for the cloud. Many businesses are now utilizing tokenization in order to desensitize sensitive information and adhere to data laws. Thus, it is now possible to provide protection for different types of data, especially when traveling to international destinations. The risk to dangerous exposure is lessened.
- Security awareness is important for businesses. This does not concern only the CIOs and other company higher ups; this concerns the entire company. There should be policies, strategies and awareness programs intended to keep the business and its data secured. There should be a process that will allow all company members to understand the value of data-centric protection, as well as other information like where keys are stored or how they are used. Shared responsibilities mean better security.
- There will be a standard for cloud security. This was predicted by Tomer Okavi. As more and more organizations are migrating their platforms to the cloud, we will see this year some sort of cloud security standardization formulated and agreed upon by some of the biggest cloud vendors in the industry – including Oracle Cloud, Amazon Web Services, VMware, Microsoft Azure, IBM SoftLayer, HP Public Cloud, Salesforce and Google Cloud Platform. This move will see an increase in cloud migration especially by small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs).
These are just some of the most popular cloud security trends currently practiced by enterprises this year. As the cloud and the risks that go with it continue to evolve, these security measures will also continue to improve.
If you want your business to migrate to the cloud but don’t know where to start, let Four Cornerstone help you. We offer Oracle Cloud Service consulting. This will enable you to identify opportunities for your business on the cloud and subsequently help you get started. We can help you with the migration, custom integration and new environment configuration.
Photo courtesy of Perspecsys Photos.