Implement a regular patching cadence to maintain a secure cloud environment
Modern-day enterprises are increasingly migrating their applications and data to cloud-based environments.
A large amount of data traversing through the cloud has also introduced a host of new security threats and challenges stemming from external actors, malicious insiders, or unintentional mistakes.
Common cloud security threats
The key to staying ahead of cloud security attacks is understanding the most common threats that occur. Here are the top security threats organizations face when using cloud services.
A cloud misconfiguration happens when a user or admin fails to set a cloud platform’s security setting properly. It often results from the need to make cloud data shareable and accessible. Configuration problems can vary from publicly accessible storage buckets to exposed credentials in public repositories.
Denial of Service
Denial of service attacks occurs when threat actors flood an organization’s cloud network with a large amount of web traffic. This results in operations stalling entirely, with employees and customers unable to access the system, making it unable to operate the business.
Application programming interfaces (APIs) allow users to interact with cloud-based services. Many APIs have security vulnerabilities that, when exploited, can put your cloud environment at risk. Malicious actors can exploit insecure APIs and access enterprise data by launching denial-of-service (DoS) attacks and code injections.
Top Cloud Security Data Breaches
Cyber attackers often target multi-million dollar companies to extort money. Some of the most prominent security breaches in recent years resulted from lacking cloud security.
In the Capital One breach, the personally identifiable information of about 100 million customers in both the U.S. and Canada was exposed.
The attacker exploited the misconfigured web application firewall and generated a fraudulent access token to fetch data from AWS storage. The attacker exfiltrated 700 folders and datasets containing customer information.
Kaseya Ransomware Attack
In July 2021, IT solutions provider Kaseya suffered a massive attack on its unified remote monitoring and network perimeter security tool. The attack crippled the company’s SaaS servers and affected on-premise VSA solutions used by Kaseya customers across ten countries.
The supply chain ransomware attack aimed to steal administrative control of Kaseya services from managed service providers and their downstream customers.
Top 5 cloud security checklist
Cloud computing enables organizations to achieve enhanced data gathering and storage, flexibility through remote working, fast scalability, and data sharing. It also comes with a set of risks and the ever-present danger of cyber criminals.
Here are five best practices to include in your cloud security checklist.
Set password policies and multi-factor authentication
Set minimum password lengths and expiration periods. Enable multi-factor authentication to provide an added layer of security to cloud data.
Implement robust access controls
Manage appropriate access and regularly audit permissions for every person and every system interacting with cloud-based systems.
Set up encryption
Encrypt the data using your own keys so that only authorized personnel with the proper keys can access the data.
Establish external sharing standards
Limit sharing of sensitive documents and automatically warn the user against sharing files with an external email domain or quarantine the file before it is accessed or shared.
Implement a regular patching cadence to maintain a secure cloud environment.
Threats are evolving. So must your cloud security. Remember, having broad and continuous visibility into the security posture of your cloud assets is the key to effective risk mitigation.