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Applying the right cloud security monitoring solutions remains one of the essential parts of every cloud strategy. Cloud makes data sharing easy – just look at link-based sharing, a popular function of cloud computing. Instead of inviting each collaborator, you can share a link with all parties to access your data.
Although easy data sharing is a great asset, it can also be a severe security risk because it is difficult to control. In this instance, one can gain unauthorized access if the shared link is forwarded to another person, stolen during a cyberattack, or guessed by a cybercriminal. And you won’t be able to revoke the access easily.
How cloud security monitoring works
Data, applications, and infrastructure behaviors on virtual and physical servers are continuously assessed and tracked by cloud security monitoring solutions to detect threats and vulnerabilities on virtual and physical servers.
Advanced cloud monitoring solutions identify unusual activity, notify users, enable incident response and use automation to measure and evaluate the impact of this activity on data, applications, and infrastructure. Organizations can integrate cloud security monitoring directly into their infrastructures to host cloud servers and add them as third-party enhancements to existing systems.
The security risks of cloud computing
Most people unfamiliar with cloud solutions presume that criminal activity, human error, and weak credentials are behind most cloud service data breaches. Still, many other security risks exist. The most common challenges facing cloud security are as follows:
Malware – Malware poses a severe threat to cloud services, as they constantly receives and transmit data and documents. This means that bad actors will have more chances to conduct malware assaults like hyperjacking and hypervisor infections.
Data loss – Cloud services’ collaboration and data-sharing capabilities are double-edged swords since they frequently make it too easy for users to share information with incorrect internal parties or external third parties.
Misconfigurations – Employees who fail to install the necessary security measures on a cloud platform can unintentionally permit uncontrolled outbound access.
Complex IAM – Identity and access management (IAM) can be complicated in a cloud or hybrid context. Understanding who has access to which resources can be time-consuming and challenging for larger businesses.
API security issues – Cloud applications communicate with one another through APIs, but these APIs may need to be more secure. To acquire firm data, malicious actors can use APIs to perform denial-of-service (DoS) assaults.
Reducing cloud computing security risks
There’s a risk that sensitive data can be accidentally or deliberately leaked to untrusted third parties when data flows between organizations and cloud service providers. However, if your organization can monitor your IT using on-premise cloud security monitoring solutions, you can correlate and analyze collected data for greater:
Visibility – The visibility of an organization’s infrastructure decreases as it migrates to a cloud environment. Cloud monitoring technologies should offer a single point of access to monitor application, user, and file behavior to spot potential assaults.
Integration – A cloud monitoring solution should ideally integrate with an organization’s current services, including productivity suites, endpoint security products and identity and authentication services to maximize visibility.
Scalability – Tools for cloud security monitoring should be able to keep an eye on massive amounts of data spread over numerous dispersed locations.
Auditing – Cloud security monitoring technologies should offer robust auditing and monitoring capabilities because it can be difficult for enterprises to manage and adhere to compliance requirements.
Monitoring – Advanced cloud security monitoring tools should continuously track behavior through real-time monitoring to spot nefarious activities and thwart attacks.
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The benefits of cloud security monitoring solutions
Any signs of weakness in a cloud environment need to be detected. Automated monitoring tools can help IT and security personnel be immediately alerted to anomalies and patterns that could indicate unsafe or malicious behavior in real-time. Though cloud security monitoring can compromise the integrity and confidentiality of an organization’s data, it also delivers clear advantages, as it can:
Ensure compliance – Cloud-based businesses must utilize monitoring technologies to prevent costly fines and compliance infractions.
Increase customer trust – Customers’ trust and happiness may decline due to an unreported security event, especially if customer data is exposed. It may even force the closure of corporate activities.
Avoid business disruptions – To ensure business continuity and data security, it is important to monitor your cloud environments to prevent disruptions and data breaches.
Identify weaknesses – Maintaining visibility over your cloud environments is crucial for identifying potential weaknesses in your IT systems. Cloud security monitoring enables security teams to quickly identify suspicious behavior patterns and indicators of compromise using an automated observation tool.
Improve security maturity – A mature security model calls for a proactive, multi-layered cyber strategy. Organizations can integrate the cloud as one of those layers with the help of a cloud monitoring system, which also offers visibility into cloud environments.
The challenges of cloud security monitoring solutions
Cloud environments need to be observed for any signs of weakness. Automated monitoring tools can help IT and security personnel by immediately notifying them of anomalies and spotting patterns that could indicate unsafe or malicious behavior. What are issues worth remembering when dealing with implementing cloud security monitoring solutions:
Alertness fatigue – Many cloud monitoring tools bombard users with alerts. This makes it difficult for IT and security teams to determine what is essential to concentrate on.
Lack of context – Evaluating logs and warnings effectively is only possible if a team has all the relevant information. When receiving signals, security personnel should know what to monitor, the reasons why and which next steps to take.
Lack of a security plan – Many firms have hurriedly migrated to the cloud to accommodate remote work without having a defined cloud security policy.
Monitoring best practices
In order for organizations to pinpoint the root causes of misconfigurations and learn how to protect themselves from threats, they should know the best methods to assist them in identifying the root causes of misconfigurations. To be strategic and gain visibility into their environments, organizations should adopt the following best practices.
Observe how users interact with the site – Services should be designed to improve the outcomes of users. User experience is enhanced by reducing issues caused by crashes, service interruptions, errors and bottlenecks.
Make an inventory of your cloud infrastructure – Security teams should examine their cloud infrastructure to comprehend vulnerabilities. Conduct routine audits and be aware of modifications.
Set up targeted alerts – A timely alert that reaches the right team members is crucial to resolving issues. You can send monitoring messages on Slack, email or via text messaging.
Analyze cloud service providers – Organizations should assess levels of compliance and data network availability, regardless of the vendor, to ensure they meet their demands.
Take a layered approach to cloud security – Native cloud monitoring tools can help your organization set up security layers to increase visibility into your tech stack.
Analyze your performance metrics – Think carefully about your main monitoring goals before deciding whether performance, security, or reliability trumps other factors.
Cloud will only be able to benefit an organization if it leverages specialized tools to address different components of tech stacks, such as physical hardware and orchestration, so that the organization can get the most out of cloud. To minimize your cloud security risks, cloud security monitoring solutions aggregate data from multiple servers, instances and containers to identify anomalous activity and alert an incident response team.
About the authorSoftware Mind
Software Mind provides companies with autonomous development teams who manage software life cycles from ideation to release and beyond. For over 20 years we’ve been enriching organizations with the talent they need to boost scalability, drive dynamic growth and bring disruptive ideas to life. Our top-notch engineering teams combine ownership with leading technologies, including cloud, AI, data science and embedded software to accelerate digital transformations and boost software delivery. A culture that embraces openness, craves more and acts with respect enables our bold and passionate people to create evolutive solutions that support scale-ups, unicorns and enterprise-level companies around the world.