Cloud Security Challenges & Issues You Should Be Aware Of
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Cloud technology has been a boon to many. It has helped businesses across the world cut down costs and become more efficient. With 92% of these businesses using cloud to host all or part of their IT infrastructure, the concern of cloud security is one that cannot be ignored.
In a recent survey, 79% of the respondents said that they had a data breach and over 40% of them said that they had at least ten data breaches. If we take a step back and look at the larger picture, it becomes evident that in a world where businesses increasingly rely on cloud technology, there is a dire need for stronger security protocols, and more importantly, a culture that enforces cloud security.
Why Should You Care About Cloud Security?
From a business perspective, it can be hard to justify the costs of additional expenditure to keep data safe. There are a number of reasons backing why cloud security is essential. Here are some of them:
- Malicious use of data
- Privacy and compliance risks
- Regulatory mandates
- Customer data protection
- Safeguarding intellectual property
- Legal liabilities
If none of those issues seem pertinent enough, then consider the cost aspect of it. Standing at US $148 per data breach on average, companies that are prone to data breaches are likely to crumble without strong cloud security measures in place. To reiterate, that is the cost per data breach.
This is without the consideration of the ripple effect of such data breaches. Companies that experience data breaches will often experience losses from customer churn, downtime, identification costs, containment costs, and potential penalties.
Major Cloud Security Challenges
1. Breaches and Loss of Data
The lack of proper systems to prevent data breaches is a major cloud security concern. It isn’t enough to solve a data breach when it arises; all preventive measures must first be taken. If those systems fail, then a clear and actionable plan must be drawn out to deal with data breaches expediently. There is also the obvious chance of losing vast amounts of crucial data.
2. Regulatory Compliance
Most business today is executed on a global stage. This means that your internal practices have to meet all the international regulations and compliance requirements. At the very least, a business cannot function without meeting compliance requirements within the jurisdictions that they operate in.
3. Technical Expertise
Technical expertise is another major cloud security concern. Many businesses resist moving to cloud due to a deficiency in technical talent to manage their infrastructure. With some businesses utilizing multiple cloud platforms, reliable tech experts are hard to come by.
4. Cloud Migration, Change Control, Architecture and Strategy
While it is essential to move with the times, it is also essential to minimize risk where possible failure to leverage the right services and implement security protocols leaves businesses open to major risks.
Many businesses fail to adopt a migration strategy that is sustainable, often attempting to complete migration as quickly as possible. This can be a mistake. Resources, including technical experts, can become overwhelmed.
A well-structured architecture and change-control strategy ensure that migration is far safer.
5. Unsecured APIs
With the increased integration of various, APIs are an entry point for malicious hackers. Technology vulnerabilities such as third party integrations and poorly configured tools open companies up to unnecessary risk. All APIs need to be vetted before implementation.
62% of businesses that have experienced severe cloud security threats have indicated that misconfiguration is the leading cause.
7. Insufficient Identity, Credential, Access and Key Management
Poor data access behavior is a major cloud security issue. Trusting employees is crucial; however, safeguarding them, yourself, and your customers from slip-ups and human error is equally important. Clear policies have to be created, and access must be limited necessity.
Even poor password practices using internal or external access tools such as email can leave businesses prone to account hijacking and enable access to sensitive information.
8. Limited Cloud Usage Visibility
It is imperative that companies have insights into who is accessing the data and what that data is being accessed for. Without this visibility, it is near impossible to tell if those accessing data have a malicious intent or not.
9. Vendor Lock-In for Security Features
Vendor lock-ins prevent easy integration, and as a result, security is often overlooked.
Make Sure to Run a Cloud Security Risk Assessment
Now that the various cloud security risks are known, what can be done? The answer is quite straightforward, run a cloud security assessment. This will let you know which areas you need to be wary of and also give you insights into the possible solutions.
Cloud security risk assessments must become a priority. With the increased reliance on technology, businesses need to prioritise security and risk mitigation.