24 cloud security issues that every entrepreneur and cloud service provider should be aware of, to slay them bravely and ensure the security of their cloud data.
Cloud security is a popular topic in business technology. In a world, where cloud has the abilities to resolve many entrepreneurs’ problems to optimize their businesses, the same cloud also has various risks questioning its security and making headlines. It is also abstaining many organizations to adopt cloud technology. As it’s the field of development, much research is going on to make cloud security vulnerabilities detectable and preventable to provide more protection and make it less hazardous. In our previous article, we discussed what measures and practices cloud providers follow to keep their cloud services secure for user’s and gave you some insights regarding the Cloud Security System and How It Works.
Cloud security is a delicate matter that needs to be addressed by both the user and the provider party as the risk of threat to cloud security can hit from both ends. Cloud security issues have many dimensions. Some threats are related to cloud data services and some are specific cloud computing threats. Including threats from both ends, cloud users score more risks than cloud providers do, though its risks business for both the parties.
Security Issues for Cloud Users- Basically, for cloud users, the issues double up when cloud providers challenges come into count for risking users’ data. This is why one should consider all the facts and threats before selecting a cloud service provider. Losing data and data breaches are the obvious consequential risks which can occur if insufficient due diligence takes place from the cloud service provider. Also, protecting the cloud network is its user’s duty as well because users’ carelessness can affect the whole cloud system. Listed below are the issues that can tag along with wrong cloud service providers.
- Non-Compliance – cloud consumers open their data to various risks when they adopt cloud technology. If their cloud provider is unable to or fails to comply with regulations and safety commands that he supposed to provide then the risk of losing and data breach increases.
- Data segregation – Risk of privacy violation increases without data isolation or data segregation. Sometimes cloud providers store more than one customer’s data on the same server to conserve resources, cut cost, and maintain efficiency. In such a case, one’s privacy can be disturbed as the user’s data can be viewed by the other user who can a competitor.
- Disaster recovery – Insurity of data recovery is required from the cloud service provider’s end. Data loss can be possible by various means including power failure, mechanical damage, natural disaster, fire accidents & water accidents, malware attack, deleting a file accidentally, and also if the clone of the data is not made.
- Insufficient Due Diligence – carelessness in maintaining the security of your data is not acceptable. Cloud system has various points of vulnerabilities to welcome a threat. Therefore, leaving a gap unpatched and letting vulnerable spots unattended and unprotected can lead to cause a data breach or data loss.
- Penetration testing support – to ensure the security of the data, your cloud service provider should support you to have the permission of carrying out the authorized and scheduled penetration tests externally & internally. If you think the privacy and the security of your data are important you must have testing support. Relying on your service provider can lead to insufficient due diligence but with testing support, you would have command over your service provider to fix weak spots of their system.
- Investigation support – Not knowing how your cloud provider is making sure that your data is secured and its privacy has been maintained can be risky. Before adopting cloud service they tell you a few things that they do but how to know if they really take those measure they are telling you about.
- Contractual breaches – when a cloud customer is promised of specific services on a document where provider give his commitment to deliver those proposed services but fails to deliver is called contractual breach. The risk is real and leaving your data in the hands of such unfaithful service providers can be risky. Legal action can be taken in such cases.
- Long term viability – cloud consumer should have a clear idea of their service provider’s plan for their future. It can be about adopting a multi-cloud approach, or moving on to the other cloud service provider or about if your cloud provider got swallowed by a larger firm. What plan does he have for you in such cases?
- Network eavesdropping – the fear of network eavesdropping is serious if the content of your data is sensitive, how your cloud provider is tackling the issue is important. Encryption can be of great help but many applications do not offer encryptions or they may be configured with no encryption used on default settings. This can raise the risk of network eavesdropping.
Cloud security challenges for providers – a right cloud security provider know their business. They are aware of the risks their network can be a target for, they have their security applications implemented accordingly. They also have a team of security experts working on advancing their security systems and patching vulnerable spots to ensure their consumers’ data security but what if you pick a wrong cloud provider, all the risks that an unprotected cloud security system can have, are your data security risks too. Let’s see how many risks it follows.
- Shared Vulnerabilities – Shared resource nature of the cloud raises the risk factor and responsibilities for their service providers. The threat of malware injection, abuse of cloud services, human error, due diligence from any user’s end, Virtual vulnerabilities, and collateral damage caused by any attack, these all can be caused by any user of your cloud service provider.
- APIs Vulnerabilities – Gateways and APIs are used to provide efficiency to cloud providers to help programs communicate but like every other program these interfaces also come with weak spots that can let malware infection or hacker intrusion in the cloud system. This can put your data at risk if your cloud service provider didn’t resolve the security issue coming from these interfaces.
- Virtualization Vulnerabilities – many threats can come through virtualization vulnerabilities such as incorrect data isolation on virtual machines (VMs), unsecured migration on VMs which can make your data an easy target for attacks. Therefore, get security assurance from your cloud provider before closing a deal.
- Physical System Vulnerabilities – Physical system need equal attention when it comes to security various risks like power failure, physical damage to hardware, fire accidents, water accidents, natural disasters, theft of physical property, all these incidents can risk can lead to data breach and data loss. Hence, security measures like data redundancy, two-factor authentication control, biometrics systems, and video surveillance should be taken to ensure the security of the infrastructure.
- Software Vulnerabilities – tools, applications, and programs vulnerabilities also need to be tested and resolved timely. Leaving software vulnerabilities unattended and unpatched can raise the risk of getting attacked. Cloud providers should be alert to detect vulnerabilities and resolve them.
- Insider Threats – ensuring personnel security is important to reduce threats of malicious insiders who can misuse their authorized access to an organization’s data for unapproved purposes. The cloud security providers should go through pre, para, and post-employment tests such as background check, security screenings, potential recruits, security awareness, training programs, and proactive.
- Malware Injection – the risk can be caused by insufficient due diligence from the user’s end, malicious insider, abuse of cloud services or by human error. The security control system should be on alert to detect, prevent and take corrective measures whenever it is needed. Cloud data protection measure should be alert for immediate action.
- Insufficient Due Diligence from User’s end – If cloud users want to protect their data they must comply with some security controls when using cloud services or otherwise, they can be the reason of putting their own data at risk of infecting their cloud application by malware injection. To know more about maintaining your cloud data security click here.
- Human Error – Human errors are pitiful but they entail serious risks to cloud security. It can happen from the user’s end by uploading an infected file or from the cloud provider’s end by missing a weak spot unsecured. Therefore, its better cloud provider stay alert to tackle such mishap with efficiency.
- Abuse of cloud services – like a malicious insider, there can be a malicious user who may join cloud free services with the intention of infecting cloud application with malware that can hijack accounts of the users, eavesdrop to steal data or attack you with denial of service attack and give advanced persistent threat to harm cloud network. Cloud provider must have powerful security controls and other security measures to ensure the data security they determine to provide.
The race within technology is of good and evil, the higher cyber threats are emerging in business technology the more advanced programs are being developed to reduce the risks of those threats. The quality of cloud services can only be judged by your satisfaction which will only come when the security of your data will be assured from all the areas of risks. The stream of cloud knowledge is over here the article will be followed by another one about Advanced cloud security practices by major brands.