When talking about the cloud, we inevitably have to talk about security.

It seems that every time the subject of the cloud is brought up, the conversation to follow is focused on how secure, or not secure, it really is. Some would have you believe the cloud is safer than on-premise, while others contend that it is the most vulnerable place you could store your data.

When thinking about cloud security, it’s ultimately up to each individual organization and its management to determine if a cloud deployment is a right strategy. Consideration must be given to the different service categories: Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS), Platform as a Service (PaaS), and Software as a Service (SaaS) as each model brings different security requirements and responsibilities.

Failure to ensure appropriate security protection when using cloud services could ultimately result in higher costs and potential loss of business, thus eliminating any of the potential benefits of cloud computing.

There are a number of security points that need to be considered with regards to cloud computing:

  • An ever-growing Cloud Security Market

Though there are risks associated with storing data in the cloud, security has always been of paramount importance, and we are seeing more and more technologies put in place to ensure that cloud applications and data are protected.

The higher the risks, the higher the demand for safety and thus the higher the security put in place.

  • Public v. Private

One of the debates when it comes to cloud security is the level of security offered by private versus public cloud. While a private cloud strategy may initially offer more control over your data, it is not inherently more or less secure. Transitioning to public cloud computing involves a transfer of responsibility and control to the cloud provider over information as well as system components that were previously under the customer’s direct control.

Despite this loss of control, the public cloud service customer still needs to take responsibility for ensuring security.

The customer achieves this by ensuring that the contract with the provider and its associated cloud service agreement has appropriate provisions for security and privacy.

True security has more to do with your overall cloud strategy and how you are using the technology within your organization than whether one is using a Private or Public cloud.

  • Employees are one of the highest security risks

Outside hackers are what most people perceive as their biggest threat to security, but employees can pose an equal or even greater risk. Damage caused by the malicious actions of people working within an organization can be substantial, given the access and authorizations they enjoy. This is further compounded by well-intentioned employees working remotely or using their personal mobile device to access sensitive materials outside of the company network.

  • Having the correct security policies in place

Too many enterprises still don’t have security policies or procedures in place to deal with data security in the cloud.The application security policy should closely mimic the policy of applications hosted on-premise.

  • New Technologies means new Security Threats and Opportunities

Storage and processing of data on the cloud create more vulnerabilities, and we will likely see more CyberThreat if the correct security devices are not put in place.

But cloud computing does not only create new security risks; it also provides opportunities to provision improved security services that are better than those many organizations implement on their own.

There are quite a few ways in which enterprises can make their cloud initiative more secure. While these tools and services exist, they aren’t always used correctly, or even used at all.  Very few are using cloud firewalls or encrypting data. Other preventative measures such as obfuscation or tokenization of sensitive data remain unknown to many organizations.

As organizations transition their applications and data to the cloud, it is critical for them to maintain, or preferably surpass, the level of security they had in their traditional IT environment.

If cloud security is one of your concerns and needs assistance or clarifications on any of the aspects of cloud implementation for any of your EPM solutions, contact us at Tactic Consulting.

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