Security professionals simply can’t rely on one cloud vendor’s security systems. Aside from storage and backup issues, downtime, and unfair pricing, being locked into one cloud vendor can result in other setbacks too. Multi-cloud strategies can overcome these challenges and keep databases running smoothly while improving company productivity, user experience, and the ability to impart critical services to customers.
Despite these advantages, looking after multi-cloud environments has introduced new obstacles for cybersecurity experts. Each cloud has a unique strategy, leading to an increased attack surface. This situation creates a corporate threat landscape that opens businesses up to new dangers and raises the risk of data loss, ultimately affecting the organization’s revenue and productivity.
In multi-cloud systems, two or more cloud computing services from various vendors are used. Here, companies will employ public clouds, private clouds, or a combination of both to minimize the risk of downtime, data loss, and widely distributed computing resources.
Naturally, monitoring and auditing the security tools of every vendor is a mandate for a robust virtual infrastructure. But, it can be challenging to manage the security systems of multiple providers simultaneously. There are four key issues that arise within multi-cloud environments.
The same access-control configuration could not work on all cloud platforms due to each vendor’s tools. As a result, cybersecurity professionals need to establish and maintain a distinct access-control structure for each cloud in the system.
There are increased chances of more security loopholes in a multi-cloud system, as some cloud systems might have unsecured resources or hidden security vulnerabilities. While taking care of this vulnerability in a single-cloud system is quite complicated, it becomes even more challenging to identify and address it with multiple clouds.
Most public cloud vendors adhere to a shared-responsibility model with a portion of the security and management duties expected to be handled by customers. But, since shared-responsibility models vary among cloud providers, customers must juggle additional responsibilities in multi-cloud environments.
From a security and IT ops perspective, each cloud in a multi-cloud system is unique. With a more complex combination of public and private clouds, the need to closely monitor the environment also increases. This can cause a strain on resources, which only becomes more difficult as the organization scales up.
Five Steps to take
The advantages of a multi-cloud security system still outweigh the drawbacks on the whole. Cybersecurity professionals can overcome the security gaps and reap the benefits of these systems by implementing the following practices.
1. Establish a single system for reporting and monitoring cloud services.
Although multitasking is always an issue, no matter what the process, keeping track of too many things at once could result in some important safety alerts falling through the cracks.
To this end, you should deploy advanced security via a single pane of glass for public multi-cloud environments, virtual networks, and private clouds, along with SaaS solutions.
2. Adopt multi-cloud security tools.
Use cloud-agnostic security tools to monitor your environment and access control. Building an arsenal of tools managed by third-party vendors removes a lot of the safety hassles associated with a multi-cloud model.
3. Employ a more automated system.
Using automated systems as an integral part of your IT infrastructure can help eliminate security mistakes due to human oversight in a complex multi-cloud environment. Moreover, you stand to receive automatic updates and alerts via email and SMS, so you can act quickly in case of any security breaches.
4. Offer single, protected, and strong identity to users.
You can also lock down the cloud systems to minimum access by default. To access more information, users would need a personal, secure, strong password. Centralized authentication and a pre-authentication system would be beneficial in securing data in a multi-cloud environment.
5. When choosing a cloud, consider its security.
Some cloud platforms, both private and public, are more secure than others for specific workloads. While choosing the cloud to deploy, it is always advisable to evaluate the security regarding a particular workload. The cost and reliability also matter in cloud selection.
In today’s environment, multi-cloud security is the most important task for data safety. Prioritizing security across all clouds is imperative to ensure no sensitive data is exposed to risk, all loopholes in the system are diagnosed, and workloads are protected.
While managing additional servers is no small feat, following some best practices and working with a competent operations team can eliminate most issues.