With advances in cloud computing, many organizations are looking to manage their computing resources via cloud-based solutions. While cloud computing offers greater computing flexibility, gaps in cloud security can leave organizations vulnerable to sophisticated cyberattacks. Your organization can benefit from cloud security tools to protect valuable cloud-based assets from security threats. Read on to learn more about the top cloud security defenses.
Critical Focus Areas for Cloud Security Tools
Considering the versatility of cloud computing, implementing sophisticated cloud security tools can effectively protect your organization’s cloud-based assets (e.g., networks, applications, systems, or data) against cyber threats. Cloud security needs also vary across organizations, based on factors including IT infrastructure, industry, or specific business operations.
Two of the most critical focus areas for cloud security tools include:
- Access control management
- Encryption vulnerability management
What is Cloud Security?
Cloud security is the cybersecurity infrastructure that mitigates risks to your organization’s cloud computing assets. The most common threats that cloud security defends against include:
- Data breaches, resulting in loss of sensitive data or compromise thereof
- System misconfiguration, resulting in unauthorized modification to digital assets
- Account hijacking, granting network access to threat actors
- Compromised API security, affecting business operations with third-party vendors
Organizations typically source cloud security tools via:
- In-house solutions, managed by a team of cybersecurity experts
- Outsourced solutions, managed by third-party vendors
- Outsourced solutions, managed by cloud service providers
Regardless of which option(s) works best for your organization, it is critical to have up-to-date, robust cloud security tools to minimize threat risks to your valuable digital assets.
Access Control Management for Cloud Security
Cloud security tools that control access to networks, applications, and sensitive data are critical for mitigating threat attacks. Specifically, secure password and encryption practices can help achieve optimal security for your organization’s most valuable cloud-based assets.
Cloud Security Tools for Access Control
Your organization can use cloud security monitoring tools to ensure authorized access. Policies should be configured to enforce multifactor authentication, normal access times (e.g., during work hours), a minimum complexity threshold, and expiries.
Cloud security monitoring tools can then help detect and mitigate access attempts that violate your configured policies:
- Security Information and Event Management (SIEM) tools to monitor events involving:
- Access to cloud networks containing sensitive data
- Access to sensitive data environments
- Elevated access to privileged accounts
- Threat intelligence tools, open-source or not, to identify commonly exploited vulnerabilities and cross-reference results from penetration tests
- Penetration testing to identify password vulnerabilities related to social engineering attacks
Authentication policy management is critical to your suite of cloud security monitoring tools and can prevent cloud security breach risks.
Password Policies and Education
Aside from configured settings, your organization should include secure password practices within employee cybersecurity training. The most common password vulnerabilities to educate your employees on include:
- Personnel re-use of passwords across multiple applications, networks, or systems
- Personnel use of easy-to-guess passwords
- Lack of least privilege policies, granting anyone access to privileged accounts, regardless of business need
- Leakage of cryptographic keys holding access to cloud networks
Encryption Vulnerability Management
Cloud computing assets (e.g., data, network traffic) should always be protected with secure encryption. Cloud security tools can help address vulnerabilities in encryption practices, the most common of which include:
- Lack of data encryption at rest and during transit
- Poor compliance with data encryption standards
- Poorly configured encryption methods
- Weak cryptographic key management
Addressing vulnerabilities in cloud encryption can help your organization minimize threat risks to data, applications, and networks.
Cloud Web Security Scanning
A cloud web security scanner can identify vulnerabilities in web applications, especially those connected to and functioning on the cloud, helping to prevent common attack vectors. Specifically, a web security scanner can identify encryption vulnerabilities for cloud-based web applications, including:
- Poorly enforced encryption, such as missing HTTP headers
- Improper cryptographic key management, with weak or re-used keys
- Lack of authenticated encryption for data transmission
A robust cloud web security scanner can enhance your organization’s cloud cryptographic measures, ensuring optimal cloud security.
Cloud compliance tools
Compliance with crucial industry encryption standards for cloud computing can also help minimize threat risks. Cloud compliance tools can protect data transmitted via cloud environments, specifically for organizations in the payment card industry (PCI).
Based on widely applicable frameworks such as the PCI DSS, organizations processing cardholder data (CHD) can protect these data from breach risks by implementing scope reduction controls. Specifically, organizations can:
- Avoid storage of CHD on the cloud, except for strict business-need purposes
- Use segmentation methods to separate encrypted cloud CHD environment from other environments
- Minimize the use of third-party cloud service providers for protecting CHD
Cloud compliance tools can minimize threats to cloud security while simultaneously helping your organization achieve compliance to frameworks such as the PCI DSS.
Achieve Optimal Cloud Security
A well-implemented suite of cloud security tools can help your organization protect digital assets running on the cloud.
As a leading managed security services provider (MSSP), RSI Security can guide your organization’s cloud security implementation, providing comprehensive protections for your most critical digital assets.
To learn more, contact RSI Security today.