Security at the Speed of Innovation

Data Security in Cloud Computing

As companies focus on speed innovation, they also face stringent regulations on data protection, growing threats, and unceasing compliance requirements. Can they match the cloud’s speed? Or do security factors decelerate them? Isn’t it possible to have both speed and security? This is not generalized or theoretical – clients bring up these conversations as frequently as the opportunity arises. And it is possible to achieve both security and speed.

Authoritarian techniques that facilitate partnerships between security and compliance teams and application teams are essential for achieving both security and speed. You need to ensure that an ordered approach to interaction, teamwork, and honoring other people’s priorities exists. Speed and scale are the developer’s requirements to function; enterprise and data protection are the security teams’ requirements.

The speed at which new developer technologies and innovations in technology are being introduced is beyond any company’s ability to vet them. Consequently, IT enterprises encounter a tradeoff; meet business demands via rapid technology adoption, tolerate more risk, or slow down the technology adoption process for possible risk mitigation. An unavoidable result is tension between IT companies and the rest of the industry. Also crucial to note is because new applications have multiple dependencies, putting one into production may incur policy debt.

Most modern security technologies, such as firewalls and gates, are either palliative or point-based tools. They diagnose and treat symptoms and not the actual causes. They are compatible only for traffic routed via them, precluding server-to-server interactions within the data center.

These are insufficient to address the growing number of cyber-attacks that have paralyzed businesses and exposed customer and consumer data. Consider the three major security Linux exploits discovered last year: Heartbleed, Ghost and Shellshock. Companies had to find the vulnerabilities and reset servers to activate the fix, resulting in a cascading failure of servers, downtime, and a slew of other performance issues – simply because there is no centralized way to apply policy and determine whether a resource in use is vulnerable.

Manage Risk and Compliance with Prescriptive Controls

Many in the business widely see regulatory conditions to be complicated and burdensome. Time and effort are consumed; to examine GDPR, EBA or FCA, HIPAA, FDIC, global standards (e.g., ISO or PCI) or industry standards (e.g., the NIST). These requirements were developed for your protection and the public. Besides, actual data security benefits occur due to complete, top-down compliance.

Your security handlers can transform these policy requirements into regulated controls. They should then offer prescriptive implementations to authorize the fulfillment of these controls. Global regulatory and industry needs are ever-changing, and keeping up with trends and updates helps strengthen data security maintenance.

Improve Data Privacy Techniques

Every security program is centered on data protection, considering rising breach cases and rigid policies for data security. However, it is worth noting that data isn’t one-size-fits-all. Data sensitivity is a crucial factor to consider in the data protection process. Once sensitive and confidential data leaks, any enterprise will come under high pressure. Operational support might be enough for internal data (instructional materials and emails) and public information (accounting reports and press releases). However, technical controls, where you have complete data control and assurance – are necessary for confidential and sensitive data protection. Confidential and sensitive data includes personal identity information, employee pay stubs, financial transactions and consumer data.

This assurance protects data in transit, at rest and in use.

Your cloud provider promises not to access your security keys and data with operational assurance, but with technical assurance, the data and keys cannot be accessed. For keys, technical assurance can be achieved using “Keep your own key (KYOK).” This solution provides a single user service for key management with a wholly dedicated hardware security module (HSM) you can exclusively control and based on FIPS 140-2 Level 4 standard industry-certified technology. This is essential for encrypting data in storage repositories and databases and private security keys for transit data.

While sensitive data is in use (in databases, computes and containers), a holistic approach must be adopted for reliable protection. Confidential computing is a security provision that safeguards data in use in a computing setting within secure enclaves. Your solutions architecture should allow virtualized workloads to operate within confidential servers, confidential containers within which containerized applications are deployed and confidential databases for data storage. Thus, taking advantage of confidential computing and KYOK solutions delivers greater privacy assurance for enterprises that their cloud data is always protected.

Exploit Zero Trust Architecture to Control Access

In modern data center topologies, no absolute proof is required to ensure that a token holder is who they claim to be. Enterprises need a central signing authority that issues tokens to all clients and internal components to provide a high level of proof of identity and actual trust in components. This ensures that the management backplane is resistant to token and credential theft and that the system is trustworthy.

Zero Trust isn’t just “Never Talk to Strangers.” Instead, it assumes that user accounts or devices may not necessarily gain implicit access based on their network or physical location. This approach should prioritize data as it is the most valuable investment.

This approach begins with the following questions;


● What is the data type?
● Who is allowed access?
● From where can they access it?
● Are there controls for need-to-know-only access?

Your solution design should allow explicit access decisions to data at every opportune point. This is possible through identifying and complying with connection controls across identity, network, endpoint and application. For example, consider access controls based on a network with allowed access locations instead of allowing direct internet access to sensitive data.

Only verify and authorize machines or users designed for access, set up granular access policies and demand multifactor authentication for sensitive data access. Ensure a healthy security posture where vulnerabilities are eliminated and the proper configurations are in place.

Accomplish Uninterrupted Detection and Response

Any enterprise can be a target of hackers at any time. It’s just not possible to lock the door and retire home. Accounting for 15 percent of breaches annually, cloud misconfiguration is a major security risk breach. Having and maintaining the correct configuration for your cloud deployment is thus significant. It is vital to monitor your compliance and security posture constantly.

The security department can design requirements for specific applications and condense them into rules and policies that can be continually supervised using cloud security management tools. Consequently, drifts are detectable and can be rectified. A complete detection and response tool enables security and compliance posture verification and gives crucial insights by isolating suspicious, threatening behavior.

Incorporate DevSecOps into your Security Methods to Protect Data

The role and perspective of security in the development life cycle need to change to allow proper security performance. The cloud development and operations model (DevOps) drives culture and organizational shifts in enterprises, with application teams taking charge of the overall security solutions. The key is to set the stage for collaboration between development, operations, and security teams for security integration, resulting in a seamless process of DevSecOps. This strategy merges security and privacy actions into different stages of an application’s lifetime – design, construct, deploy and control.

The data types and specific workload determine the prescriptive controls the security team should define (e.g., regulated workloads). These control requirements can be encrypted by developers into reference architectures and used to develop reusable deployment patterns for their continuous deployment (CD) and continuous integration (CI) tool chains. They can specify appropriate policies and gates so that the decision to continue with deployment to production will be based on whether the security configurations meet the controls. Their operations teams and SRE can set up continuous detection and response for health security and compliance posture maintenance.

In a nutshell, it’s no longer an issue of whether you need more robust security or more speed. Both are achievable requirements. This is common with clients and deployments where all their teams can easily work together without complications.

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