Let me start by congratulating your company on successful migration to the Cloud. No doubt, your company’s stakeholders are enjoying the benefits of access anywhere, anytime, and your management is thrilled about the lowering of costs across the organization.
While it is a smart business decision to migrate to the Cloud, especially given the increased requirement of remote working in 2020, you need to be aware of the inherent security risks to avoid hijacking or strangulation of your infrastructure security.
A famous proverb suggests that knowing what dangers you face is the first step to mitigate them. This proverb definitely applies here—learning about the nature of threats you may face can help you become proactive in your IT security approach.
The 6 potential risk areas of cloud infrastructure security are:
- Breach of data
Data breaches are not a new threat but remain damaging. Violation of data continues to plague businesses across the globe. However, the danger becomes bigger today because studies suggest that data on the Cloud is more vulnerable to breaches. The Cloud infrastructure and its management is a relatively new concept, and many IT professionals may not be cognizant of the risk areas.
- Account hijacking
With employees and stakeholders logging from remote devices using public internet in many instances, the risk of accounts being hijacked and misused is more in the Cloud environment. Hijackers often script bugs and gain access to the credentials of your employees and stakeholders (suppliers, customers, shareholders, etc.) to access sensitive and confidential information. The hijackers can then modify the information or misuse it in many ways.
- Inculcate malware
Injecting malware involves code that can be embedded in Cloud applications. These codes then behave like valid occurrences and perform as Software as a Service (SaaS) to the servers, which means it becomes part of the software in the Cloud server and infrastructure. Hackers can manipulate this malware to view and meddle with information for their benefit.
- Employee misuse
While most companies do not want to believe that one of their own will betray them, it is known to happen, and this threat is real. The risk becomes even more significant in a Cloud environment where employees need not be physically present at business premises to access sensitive information about customers, products, etc. and use it for immoral purposes.
- API threats
Cloud migration can often lead to users feeling inadequate, especially those who are not entirely comfortable with technology. In such instances, Application Programming Interfaces (APIs) are used to customize the user experience as per their comfort levels. APIs provide you with the means to fit Cloud to your needs, authenticate, offer access, and encrypt. API can become vulnerable in the communication that occurs between applications resulting in manipulations and threats.
- Lack of due diligence
While the other issues are more on the technical aspects, this issue arises because companies often do not have a clear plan for Cloud migration. Often companies do not have policies and processes to secure their applications on the Cloud, which can result in security issues. Businesses must carry out due diligence on security, keeping in mind the needs of all stakeholders and regulatory requirements.
Here’s what you need to do next
At Columbus, we offer a range of solutions with cloud migration to enable our customers reap the benefits of digital transformation, and infrastructure security is one of them. The questions that our customers ask our experts are often around the security risks of cloud infrastructure. Our answer to them is candid and straightforward, cloud infrastructure security is a vital aspect to maximum benefits of migrating to the cloud.
Some steps you can take to start off in the right direction:
- Look at what areas are the most vulnerable in the operational sense and detail the processes that are part of them
- Ask your IT team or your cloud infrastructure vendor to carry out an audit of all the areas that will be most affected—now and in the future
- List out the regulation and compliance areas that you need to meet
- Form a committee of various functions to discuss the best way forward
- Research on the best practices to secure your cloud infrastructure
- If you don’t have already, start exploring infrastructure management solution providers who can help you secure your cloud infrastructure
Download our IT Security Checklist by Columbus experts to audit the vulnerabilities of your organization.