In recent years, cloud computing has enhanced the capabilities of Information Technology for all kinds of large and small-scale organizations. This comes as no surprise, as cloud computing provides many benefits to organizations, including reducing hardware costs, the ability to scale computational capacity as needed, and the potential to connect a large array of devices into an organizational network.
However, cloud computing brings many cloud security-related issues to the table that need to be tackled. As important as it is to build a cloud-based infrastructure for your organization, it is even more imperative that you manage and secure the cloud environment as much as necessary.
This article will explain the 3 C’s of a successful cloud security infrastructure: CASB, CSPM, and CWPP, outlining what each one is and how it can help secure your organization’s ever-expanding cloud environment.
1. CASB – Cloud Access Security Broker
A Cloud Access Security Broker (CASB), or CAS-Bee for short, is an intermediary platform that sits between an organization’s on-premises infrastructure and a cloud provider’s infrastructure. A CASB ensures that traffic on the cloud environment complies with an organization’s security policies before enabling access to the network.
CASB’s provide greater visibility of traffic on the cloud network and, in addition, allows the organization to extend the reach of their security policies to the cloud environment.
What do CASB’s Offer?
Cloud Access Security Brokers offer a wide range of security features that enable greater visibility and enforcement of organizational policies on the cloud network. The main features offered by a CASB are:
- Malware Detection
- Data Loss Prevention
- User and Entity Behavior Analytics (UEBA)
- Cloud Governance and Risk Assessment
- Data Encryption and Key Management
How Will My Organization Benefit from CASB?
As on-premises services continue migrating to cloud environments, it becomes more necessary to maintain a large degree of control and visibility in these environments. This is essential for meeting your organization’s compliance standards and safeguarding your employees and enterprise from any kind of cloud-based security threat.
CASB provides thorough visibility into the usage of cloud-based apps, providing user information such as location and device. A risk assessment for each cloud service in use allows security professionals to decide whether to continue to allow access to a user or whether to block the app. Greater cloud usage visibility allows for the protection of confidential data and intellectual property.
A CASB solution helps maintain compliance by extending an organization’s policy enforcement into the cloud environment. This is done by addressing compliance regulations and regulatory requirements and determining the areas of highest compliance risk.
Threats to an organization’s cloud environment can come in the form of negligence or malicious intent. Either way, an organization’s data can come under threat by the stealing or leaking of confidential data and intellectual property.
CASB works by analyzing patterns in regular cloud usage through machine learning and behavior analytics. By doing so, potential threats can be detected early and hence remediated as soon as someone gains improper access to the cloud environment.
2. CSPM – Cloud Security Posture Management
Cloud Security Posture Management is a group of security products and services that monitor a wide variety of cloud-environment security-related issues. CSPM is able to achieve this by automating cloud security management across the following cloud-computing infrastructures:
What do CSPM’s Offer?
The following services are offered by CSPM solutions:
Automated Compliance Monitoring
CSPM’s automated and continuous compliance monitoring allows an organization to identify potential risks and remediate them before they cause a serious security issue. By continuously checking for possible misconfigurations in the three above-listed infrastructures, CSPM allows an organization to make necessary changes on a regular basis to avoid data breaches and leaks.
Configuration Drift Prevention
CSMP solutions monitor an organization’s multi-cloud environment in order to ensure adherence to compliance policies. Corrective actions occur automatically when configuration drift is detected.
In addition, CSPM tools do not simply monitor the reality of your organization’s cloud environment but also create policies to define the desired state of the cloud infrastructure. In this manner, not only does CSPM allow for risk assessment and management, but it also helps an organization visualize improvements to the security of their cloud environment and work more effectively to achieve them.
How Will My Organization Benefit from CSPM?
Here are some of the most important ways in which your organization will benefit from CSPM solutions for your multi-cloud environment:
Prevents Unintentional Vulnerabilities
By providing unified visibility and monitoring across multi-cloud environments, CSPM can help an organization prevent accidental vulnerabilities. Not all security threats to a cloud environment are intentional, and often it is the unintentional threats that can be even more costly.
CSPM prevents such unintentional security risks from becoming a threat by automatically monitoring and preventing misconfigurations
Remediation of Misconfigurations
By performing cross-comparisons of cloud application configurations and organizational benchmarks, CSPM eliminates security risks by identifying violations and remediating them in real-time.
Misconfigurations such as unauthorized modifications, developer errors, and open IP ports, among others, can leave resources on a cloud system exposed. CSPM puts up guardrails and monitors storage and database systems to ensure that proper permissions are in place and works to remediate any misconfigurations that may come up.
By providing centralized visibility and control over multi-cloud environments, CSPM reduces the friction across the various providers and accounts. Through CSPM solutions, DevOps teams receive information about cloud usage from a single source, allowing security teams to prevent their assets from being compromised.
Integration of CSPM with an organization’s DevOps tools that are already in place will enable a much more efficient and effective remediation response from the DevOps teams.
3. CWPP – Cloud Workload Protection Platform
Cloud Workload Protection Platforms are designed for workload-specific protection. Since workloads on multi-cloud environments exist in varying states, CWPP’s unified management across multiple cloud service providers provides a more consistent view of all cloud environments. In doing so, CWPPs reduce cloud protection complexity and ensure security no matter what or where the workload is.
What do CWPP’s Offer?
Here are some of the features that CWPP solutions offer:
Discovering Unmanaged Workloads
By targeting the unique protection requirements of workloads, including virtual machines, physical servers, and server-less workloads, CWPP provides an organization with the ability to discover workloads deployed in your cloud environment. In addition, you will be able to discover unmanaged workloads and make efforts to manage them.
By comparing the workload to relevant organizational and industrial policies, CWPP can be used to perform a vulnerability assessment of the workload. Depending on the outcome of said assessment, you can apply relevant security protocols such as memory protection, whitelisting, integrity protection, host-based intrusion prevention, and immutability.
How Will My Organization Benefit from CWPP?
Here are some reasons why Cloud Workload Protection Platform Solutions are beneficial to your organization’s cloud security.
Unifies Multi-Cloud Environments
Depending on their needs, most organizations make deliberate use of multiple cloud vendors. This results in a hybrid, fragmented, and multi-cloud environment, which makes it even more difficult for a security professional to know where applications and data are located.
CWPP allows for the defragmentation and unification of multi-cloud environments, ensuring that security professionals are well informed about where applications and data are located.
CWPP can integrate with the tools of Development Operations teams to fuel the cycle of continuous development and continuous innovation. By leveraging workloads to create applications and publish them directly to target consumers, CWPP allows DevOps teams to continuously be improving their customer response times.
As cloud computing continues to play a major role in the growth of organizations across the world, the need for adequate and successful cloud security becomes all the more essential. By adopting the 3 C’s of successful cloud security into your organization’s multi-cloud environment, you can ensure the security of your enterprise’s data, intellectual property, and employees.