LogicMonitor’s Cloud 2025 study, fielded in mid-2020, found that 87% of global IT decision-makers agreed that the COVID-19 pandemic will cause organizations to accelerate their migration to the Cloud. Specifically, nearly three quarters (74%) of respondents believe that, within the next five years, 95% of all workloads will be in the Cloud.
Studies clearly indicate that the rate of cloud adoption1 is growing exponentially – Organizations that were earlier on the fence are now embracing cloud-first strategies. However, cloud adoption brings challenges in its wake and when it comes to securing cloud infrastructure, organizations are apprehensive.
Here are 5 important C’s of security that every organization must consider when moving to the Cloud.
5 best practices to secure cloud-first businesses
#1 Classify Crucial Data:
Any type of business data and information is important, but not all of it needs security of the highest order. Furthermore, securing business information on Cloud is twice as hard and expensive compared to on-premises. It makes sense to segment your business data and information, thus prioritizing it according to its sensitivity and need for protection.
A Cyber Risk Assessment2 is beneficial. It assists in a pragmatic segmentation of relevant data and information by sensitivity. Allowing an organization to invest their budget selectively and providing greater security around the more sensitive information. Essentially, classifying crucial data helps you direct time, money, and effort in securing critical information that holds significant value to the organization to reduce the risk of it falling into the wrong hands.
#2 Compulsory Encryption:
In a world full of ever-growing sophisticated cybercrimes, strong encryption is essential! In simple terms, encryption means encoding critical business data and information to make it unreadable for unauthorized parties, such as cyber-criminals. Only legitimate users shall have the encryption key to decode the data when needed. Encryption is a powerful security tool that combats cybercrimes. After all, even if an attacker successfully possesses the business data and information, they would not be able to misuse it if it is impossible to decipher it.
However, Ransomware deserves to be mentioned here. Just like how an organization can use encryption for security, cyber attackers may steal business data, encrypt it and then ask for something (cash or kind) in return for encryption keys – Basically kidnapping your valuable information for a ransom. Organizations need to be vigilant about Ransomware3.
#3 Consistent Monitoring:
Cyber attackers keep a hawk’s eye on data and information available on Cloud, and so should you. Cloud monitoring should be an integral part of every cloud environment. Regularly governing and managing data on cloud gives insights into its access and usage. When activities on the cloud are monitored, you might come across a suspicious activity that can be disrupting and the security team can take timely action. Consistent cloud monitoring helps in preventing cybercrimes, as well as in enhancing over-all operational efficiency. For instance, revising IT workflows, implementing the latest authentication techniques, etc.
#4 Compliance Certification:
There are some valid concerns about security that should be addressed when moving to the Cloud. Your organization may plan and implement the best of security controls, but you still need to show that these are effective. In this case, a compliance certificate from an authorized source improves the trust of users and customers. Your cloud environment should be compliant with mandatory regulations. It ensures data security and privacy management.
You may opt to deploy a CASB (Cloud Access Security Broker)4 software. Generally, CASB is compliant with regulations such as GDPR5, HIPAA, CCPA, and other such security standards as needed.
#5 Choose Reliable Cloud Providers:
A cloud provider is a third-party vendor or a company that offers a cloud-based platform. Identities, access rights, and connected information is hosted and managed by them. So, you should do your research and be selective in choosing your cloud providers. You must look for factors such as cost, reliability, robust technology, regulatory compliance, and references (just a few out of the many factors) while you choose your provider.
You may also want to read the Smarter with Gartner6 article below that talks about 5 priorities when buying and deploying cloud offerings for better evaluation while choosing cloud vendors.
If you keep these 5 C factors in consideration, you have a greater chance of success with your cloud migration initiative and reduce the risk of compromise to your information.