Security and the Cloud Go Hand-in-Hand: Are You Prepared?

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Just because you’ve tapped into the vast resources of a cloud service provider to replace previously on-premises IT assets doesn’t lessen your management or cybersecurity burden. In fact, cloud migration creates new issues for network admins to focus on: migrations are inherently risky from a cyber perspective – data on the move is data that can be exploited in transit.

Cloud providers are prone to proclaiming that their security is better than any single business can achieve, simply because they have more resources to apply to the issue. By now, we all know that simply throwing money at the challenge is no guarantee of success, so maybe take that with a dose of skepticism.

“With so much data going into the cloud—and into public cloud services in particular—these resources become natural targets for bad actors,” Bob Violino points out in a CSO article reviewing the Cloud Security Alliance’s report on top threats to cloud computing. So, a security problem in the cloud could be more problematic than if it impacted a solitary organization.

Timothy Morrow and Donald Faatz of the Software Engineering Institute at Carnegie Mellon write that: “Cloud environments experience–at a high level–the same threats as traditional data center environments; the threat picture is the same. That is, cloud computing runs software, software has vulnerabilities, and adversaries try to exploit those vulnerabilities.” Furthermore, they add, the risk from those vulnerabilities is shared between the cloud provider and the cloud consumer.

Sharing is good, right? Or it leads to finger-pointing when something goes wrong.

Regardless, the IT team undertaking a migration has to learn new skills and processes that go beyond their traditional environment.

“During a cloud migration, it’s critical to remember that the security protocols that work in the enterprise will not necessarily work in the cloud,” writes InfoSecurity contributor Brad Bussie. “A strong security posture will include elements of people, process and technology, and it’s often the ‘people’ and ‘process’ categories that companies often miss during a cloud migration.”

It’s essential to reduce the risk by managing your IP address space and core network services, deployed on-premises, in the cloud, and during migration.  Many organizations suffer from antiquated DNS infrastructure that may be fragmented, riddled with errors, and hosted on questionable hardware or virtual platforms. Without clear visibility into Cloud resources, IT organizations lose control and the ability to enforce policy, creating unnecessary costs and security risks.

Many, if not most, enterprises have evolved their DNS infrastructure in a scattershot manner over many years. That may involve a mix of different vendor and homegrown solutions which are likely not capable of keeping up with rapidly changing networks. That can lead to erroneous data, disparate and conflicting data sources, and unknown data histories—a recipe for disaster and a management headache.

How you manage your DNS infrastructure is a crucial aspect of cloud data security. Without clear visibility into cloud resources, IT organizations lose the ability to enforce policy, creating unnecessary costs and security risks. Nothing is riskier than losing control over your data. With ready access to DNS information, security teams are able to gain instant visibility into traditional and cloud networks and alleviate the uncertainties of migrating to and operating in the cloud.

About BlueCat

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