Business practices in the digital age are rapidly evolving, and adapting to the cloud remains a major change that organizations undergo.
Although technological advancements have provided various cloud-based features that businesses can avail of, such advancements have also contributed to the growth of cybercrimes.
In fact, recent statistics have shown that cybercriminals can breach 93% of an organization’s internal network, allowing them to gain access to resources stored on local networks.
Such a scenario makes it essential for businesses to use cloud-based resources and implement the best industry practices for cloud security.
What is Cloud Security?
Cloud security can be defined as a set of policies and procedures implemented to protect cloud-based solutions from internal and external threats. These solutions may include cloud-based applications, networks, and infrastructure.
Using cloud security, businesses can prevent unauthorized servers from gaining access to data that’s stored in the cloud.
However, to be successful, cloud security requires efforts from the organizations and the cloud security provider.
Some of the key components of cloud security include data retention and protection policies, data security, identity and access management solutions, and legal compliance.
Difference Between Cloud Security and Cyber Security
Although cloud security and cyber security work hand-in-hand, there are a few key differences between both of them. Where cloud security ensures the protection of cloud-based solutions from attackers, cyber security encompasses the protection of IT domains, servers, and networks.
In addition to their scope of protection, cloud security restricts unauthorized users from accessing data stored in the cloud. Whereas cyber security requires users to take security measures for the protection of sensitive data.
How Does Cloud Security Work?
To ensure data protection, cloud security uses encryption methods that scramble your data and ensure that only users with an encryption key can gain access to it. This leads to the data having no value to those without the key, which makes data theft a meaningless act for cybercriminals.
Additionally, cloud security practices involve using identity and access management solutions that restrict unauthorized access.
NordLayer IAM solutions allow organizations to ensure access control for internal users and restrict unauthorized access to resources as well. Lastly, cloud security practices use threat intel to detect, prevent, and mitigate potential threats.
Why is Cloud Security Important for Businesses?
Understanding the importance of cloud security can help businesses develop a roadmap that considers both internal and external security factors.
Attackers specifically target cloud-based solutions because of the organization’s lack of visibility over them. In addition to this, organizations may face challenges in managing access restrictions in a cloud environment.
However, by actively participating in cloud security practices, businesses can ensure that their data is encrypted. They can also use identify and access management solutions to control and restrict user access in the cloud environment as well.
Types of Cloud Security Solutions
Cloud security is essential to migrating to the cloud; however, before implementing, it’s important to understand the types of cloud security solutions. The various types of cloud security solutions that businesses can implement include:
1. Data Loss Prevention (DLP) Services
These solutions use remediation alerts and data encryption to ensure the data’s security in the cloud.
2. IAM Solutions
These solutions allow businesses to implement security protocols that either allow or restrict users from accessing certain resources and applications.
3. Security Management Solutions
Security management solutions automate various threat intel practices such as monitoring, detection, and response within the cloud.
4. Disaster Recovery Solutions
Despite all the security measures in place, data breaches and cyberattacks can still occur. These solutions provide the tools and protocols required for recovering lost data.
Best Practices for Cloud Security
Ensuring cloud security for organizational data is essential when migrating to the cloud, and planning your approach will help ensure that need-based security policies and protocols are being implemented.
1. Identifying the Right Provider
When deciding on a security provider, organizations must compare their security goals with the security measures and protocols the cloud provider offers.
2. Using Data Encryption
Using data encryption is one of the most effective cloud security initiatives that organizations can take. This ensures that the data is scrambled and can only be accessed by the user with an encryption key, meaning that stolen data will be meaningless to cybercriminals.
3. Implementing Security Protocols
When implementing cloud security protocols, it’s important to ensure that the implementation is done across all levels of the cloud environment, which includes network, application, and data security. Doing so will allow businesses to protect cloud systems from unauthorized access and data breaches.
4. Using IAM Solutions
Organizations can use identify and access management solutions to ensure that access to certain resources and applications is limited to specific users. These solutions verify the identity of a user by using multi-factor authentication measures.
5. Monitoring Cloud Activities
Maintaining a report of activities within the cloud can allow businesses to identify any suspicious activity in the cloud environment and help them detect and isolate a potential threat.
6. Data Backup Plan
Despite all the protection measures, cloud environments are not immune to cyber-attacks, therefore, organizations need to ensure that they implement a data back plan. Backups can be created on the cloud or on physical servers for business continuity.
Cloud security is a set of policies and procedures that are implemented within a cloud to ensure network, application, and data security.
Implementing cloud security measures helps businesses ensure restriction to any unauthorized access, which in turn decreases the chances of a potential data breach.
In addition, cloud security protocols also ensure that organizational data is only of value to those with an encryption key.