Cloud computing security is a set of policies and procedures put in place to define how cloud-based systems, resources and data are protected. Learn what cloud computing security is and what an organization should consider when deploying a cloud security solution, including network security, posture management, workload protection for containers and serverless applications.
Cloud computing, by definition, enables an organization to lease data storage and computing resources rather than operating their own solutions in-house. Instead of operating infrastructure that is owned by the organization and located within their network perimeter, companies lease resources from a cloud service provider (CSP).
Cloud computing is offered under a number of different models and provides organizations with the ability to take advantage of the benefits of economy of scale with regard to their computing infrastructure. For example, cloud customers have the ability to take advantage of different consumption models:
Cloud computing security is an organization’s approach to protecting these cloud-based resources. This includes both security solutions deployed to protect the organization’s cloud deployment and the policies and procedures put in place to define how cloud-based systems and data are protected.
Robust cloud computing security is essential to ensuring regulatory compliance and protecting customer privacy. However, cloud-based environments are very different from the on-premises ecosystems that organizations are accustomed to protecting. These differences create various cloud security challenges:
An organization’s security posture refers to its ability to minimize cyber risk to the company. This encompasses everything from designing a robust security strategy to properly configuring security controls to deploying and operating the appropriate security tools.
The use of cloud computing security requires cloud security posture management. Traditional solutions are less effective in a cloud environment, and organizations require solutions designed to secure cloud environments and appropriately configure CSP-provided security controls and monitoring tools.
The difference between on-premises and cloud-based environments also impacts an organization’s legal and regulatory responsibilities. Compliance and governance in the cloud is different than in on-premises environments. Companies must take cloud-focused approaches to achieve the level of visibility, access control, and infrastructure certification required for compliance.
Securing data and applications in public, private and hybrid clouds requires different approaches and tools than on-premises data centers. Companies must cope with data storage outside of their network perimeters on infrastructure that they don’t own and that may be shared with other users. Securing sensitive data in the cloud requires proper configuration of CSP-provided settings and deployment of cloud-native security solutions.
In addition to protecting cloud-based data storage, companies also must deploy solutions for web applications and API protection for their cloud environments. The cloud provides a number of advantages for an organization’s applications; however, applications in the cloud are outside the traditional perimeter and running on infrastructure that the company lacks ownership and full visibility into. Protecting cloud-native applications requires cloud-native security solutions, including workload protection for serverless and containerized applications.
Effectively securing a cloud environment requires the ability to identify and respond to potential cyber threats. To accomplish this, an organization needs a cloud computing security solution with certain capabilities:
In the cloud, as well as any network environment, an organization can deploy solutions for threat prevention, protection, or both. Threat prevention offers the ability to block threats before they occur, while protection deals with ongoing threats to the enterprise.
In general, prevention is better than protection since it eliminates the cost and damage caused by cyber threats to the organization. However, prevention of every potential threat is impossible, making it necessary to deploy solutions capable of preventing as many threats as possible while also offering threat detection and protection capabilities.
Minimizing the danger posed by cyber threats to your cloud-based resources requires tailored cloud security solutions. To learn more about the unique threats faced by cloud environments, check out the 2020 Cloud Security Report. Then, request a security assessment to identify any potential gaps in your current cloud security assessment and a demonstration of CloudGuard Dome 9 to learn how best to close these security holes.