Cloud IDS (Intrusion Detection service)

An intrusion detection system (IDS) provides threat detection and alerting to support incident response activities. Cloud IDS is a cornerstone of a solid cloud security strategy.

A cloud IDS is an IDS deployed in a cloud-native form factor to monitor both on-prem and cloud-based assets as part of a cloud-delivered security strategy, or to protect cloud-based resources under a IaaS security model.

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What Is An IDS?

An IDS is a cybersecurity solution designed to identify and alert on cyber threats. An IDS can be host-based or network-based, and a network-based IDS can be deployed inline or listen on a network tap. An IDS can use a combination of signature-based and anomaly-based detection to identify potentially malicious communications or access attempts within network traffic. If an IDS detects suspicious traffic, it generates an alert sothe security team can respond to it in a swift and timely manner.

An IDS differs from an intrusion prevention system (IPS) in that an IDS only provides a warning of potentially malicious activity with no attempt to block or remediate it. An IPS, on the other hand, can block suspected attacks before they enter the corporate network.

Types Of Cloud IDS Deployment

A cloud IDS can be deployed in a few different service models. Cloud IDS can be deployed independently as a Software as a Service (SaaS) offering or as part of a next-generation firewall as a service (Next Generation FWaaS), a cloud-based FWaaS for IaaS environments, or a Secure Access Service Edge (SASE) solution, which combines SD-WAN functionality with a full network security stack (including IDS) in a cloud-based solution.

  • When deployed to secure a remote workforce, all traffic between the remote userand on-prem or cloud-based environment is monitored for suspicious connections. For example, an IDS may be built into a cloud VPN offering to identify attempted attacks against a company’s servers, systems, and applications.
  • In IaaS environments, all traffic flowing in and out of the cloud infrastructure is monitored for suspicious access attempts targeting the enterprise cloud data center, production environment, etc.
  • IDS solutions can also be deployed to monitor branch office communications to the corporate data center, remote sites, hub, campus, or IaaS. Under this model, all traffic from the branch office (SD-WAN router, other routers, or customer premises equipment) is monitored for known threats and malicious content

Cloud IDS vs On-Premises IDS - What Is The Difference?

Cloud-based and on-premises IDS have the same purpose: to inspect network traffic and alert on potentially suspicious or malicious content. They differ in how they are deployed and what portion of the organization’s infrastructure they protect.

A cloud IDS is typically deployed as a standalone solution, part of integrated security solutions for branch access, remote user access, or cloud data centers and production environments (IaaS), or consumed via a service-based model. Often, these tools take advantage of virtual network taps provided by cloud providers to monitor traffic to and from the cloud environment. On-premises IDS can be deployed as a virtual or physical appliance. These solutions work similarly to a cloud IDS but provide protection solely  to an organization’s on-prem environment.


A cloud IDS is essential for threat detection and incident response in cloud environments. Some key features of a cloud IDS include:

  • Threat Detection: Threat detection is the primary purpose of an IDS. An IDS may use a variety of different mechanisms (signature detection, anomaly detection, machine learning, etc.) to identify potential threats and generate alerts.
  • Integrated Security: IDS functionality is commonly integrated into other security solutions, such as a next-generation FWaaS, SSE, SASE, or a security gateway for cloud-native environments.. This security integration simplifies security management and supports automated threat detection and response.

Painless Deployment: Cloud IDS are deployed as virtualized appliances or via a service-based model. This makes it easy to quickly deploy new solutions to address evolving business needs.

The Benefits Of Cloud IDS

A cloud IDS enables an organization to effectively and scalably detect potential threats to their cloud-based deployments. Cloud IDS provides significant benefits to an organization, including:

  • Cloud Protection: Companies are increasingly adopting cloud infrastructure for data storage and processing. A cloud IDS enables an organization’s security team to detect and respond to potential threats to its cloud-based infrastructure.
  • Scalability: Cloud-native IDS have the scalability advantages of cloud-based infrastructure. With a cloud IDS, an organization’s security monitoring capabilities can scale to meet demand and keep up with the expansion of cloud-based services.
  • Flexibility: Flexibility is another advantage of a cloud-based virtualized infrastructure that is shared by an IDS. Since the solution is implemented as a virtualized appliance or consumed via a service-based model, companies can deploy, reconfigure, or retire security monitoring capabilities as needed to meet evolving business requirements.
  • Remote Access Support: Companies are increasingly supporting remote work, and these off-site employees require access to cloud-based corporate resources. IDS can be deployed as part of a SASE solution, which includes an IDS and secure remote access functionality as part of a single integrated solution.
  • Managed Security: Cloud IDS can be utilized via a service-based offering such as SASE or firewall as a service (FWaaS). This enables an organization to outsource the responsibility and overhead of security management to their security service provider.

Cloud IDS/IPS With Check Point

Cloud IDS provides an organization with the ability to detect cyber threats and provides vital alerts to security personnel for incident response. Cloud IPS goes a step further to block identified threats before they enter an organization’s cloud environment and pose a risk to corporate data storage and applications.

Harmony Connect, Check Point’s SASE solution, provides integrated threat prevention, with embedded cloud IPS and DLP, to secure remote access with a single, cloud-native solution. Learn more about securing on-prem and IaaS resources by signing up for a free demo of Harmony Connect Remote Access.

Check Point NGFWs integrate IDS/IPS functionality and have been recognized as a Leader in Gartner’s Magic Quadrant for Network Firewall for 22 years running.

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