More Security With Automation
Disruptive changes and innovations are now the order of the day in the technology world due to the low barriers to entry through the public cloud. One development that is getting more and more attention is multi-cloud. This describes the parallel use of two or more cloud service provider (CSP) platforms.
Against this background, Palo Alto Networks asks the question: But what does a strategy look like that effectively addresses the processes and tools required to manage the new risks and security threats in the cloud?
Cloud generally describes a computing platform that is divided into three categories: IaaS (Infrastructure-as-a-Service), PaaS (Platform-as-a-Service) and SaaS (Software-as-a-Service). While each of these solutions presents its unique security challenges, Palo Alto Networks’ current analysis focuses on IaaS and PaaS, where there are currently three market-dominating players: Amazon Web Services (AWS), Microsoft Azure and Google Cloud Platform.
Challenges In A Multi-Cloud Environment
How can companies operate freely in the cloud and implement the proper restrictions to avoid unnecessary security risks? Palo Alto Networks believes that a basic understanding of the shared responsibility model is critical as it is the key differentiator compared to older on-prem environments. As soon as this model is understood, documented and agreed in a RACI matrix (a technique for analyzing and representing responsibilities, derived from Responsible, Accountable, Consulted and Informed), companies should carry out a risk assessment: This requires a thorough understanding of security ahead of the cloud. An inventory of the current security processes and tools is crucial for the cloud risk assessment. that support risk management. Unfortunately, many companies skip this step and go straight to the design and build phases, which is a fatal mistake. Why? Because it inevitably leads security teams to rebuild their on-premise security model in the cloud and miss the opportunity to transform their security program towards DevSecOps.
When companies plan an all-in approach to the cloud, they typically focus on one of the three leading players: Google, AWS, or Azure. Each of these providers offers first-class services with all paramount security and compliance certifications. Several months after the cloud migration, a request comes from a department, and the security team is confronted with a new cloud request: “Provider X has just started a new function that directly addresses our business needs – can we get access this week?” The security team then struggles with it and tries to figure out how the new provider can also use what is developed for the primary cloud.
According to Palo Alto Networks, this is a significant challenge for security teams that rely on traditional tools or just native security features of their primary cloud platform. How does AWS GuardDuty or AWS Config help you protect Google or Azure clouds? Actually, not at all. So how should a security team proactively address the multi-cloud security challenge without having to empathize with the multitude of constantly changing offerings from individual cloud providers?
Standards Are The Forerunners Of Automation
Security in a multi-cloud environment can be a challenge given the vastly different APIs between cloud providers. The best place to start is with a trustworthy standard of security. Rather than designing a standard from scratch, try using the Center for Internet Security to start. The AWS benchmark has existed for several years, and both benchmarks for Azure and Google Cloud were published in 2018. Standards may not be the most exciting part of security, but they are the forerunners of automation. Put, companies cannot automate what they have not standardized. Once they agree on a standard, over time, they can measure themselves against it and automate as their cloud security program matures.
The Transition From Theory To Implementation
According to Palo Alto Networks, security professionals should devise a strategy that effectively responds to emerging risks and threats from the public cloud. This can only be achieved with a deep understanding of the shared responsibility model and a strong focus on analyzing the process by which development and business teams use the public cloud.
Also Read: Cloud Computing Trends 2021