For both large and small businesses, software-as-a-service (SaaS) applications and infrastructure providers like Amazon Web Services (AWS) and Microsoft Azure have become the norm. Given the proliferation of cloud workloads and a chronic shortage of cloud expertise, improving cloud security maturity is even more critical. Organizations that ignore cloud cybersecurity gaps or underinvest can cause more harm than good instead of achieving the desired digital transformation and cloud optimization. As trusted advisors to business decision-makers, service providers are well-positioned to profit from the growth of cloud computing and cybersecurity.

This article discusses cloud responsibilities, the benefits of comprehensive attack surface protection, cloud security considerations, and how you can improve your cloud security readiness.

The rising importance of cloud computing and SaaS applications

Cloud adoption has reached a tipping point, with nearly 95% of businesses now using it. The following are some of the most compelling reasons to use the cloud:

  • Budget and IT resource optimization
  • Work-from-anywhere and mobile devices have more flexibility.
  • Use of SaaS-based collaboration tools like Salesforce and Atlassian’s Jira is on the rise.

With more cloud workloads and apps, sensitive data such as Personal Health Information (PHI) and credit card numbers is dispersed even further. Organizations must apply the same stringent cybersecurity controls, compliance, and threat detection to cloud infrastructure as they do to on-premises resources. Even so, there is often a lack of clarity about cloud security roles and responsibilities, as well as where to begin.

Who’s responsible for cloud security  

Customers may mistakenly believe that their MSSP is in charge of virtually every aspect of IT and network infrastructure, as well as security. MSSPs, end customers, and cloud infrastructure providers like AWS all share responsibility for protecting cloud workloads and SaaS applications. A SaaS provider is solely responsible for host infrastructure, physical security, and network controls, according to the Center for Internet Security. Application-level controls, Identity and Access Management (IAM), and endpoint protection, on the other hand, are areas where service providers and customers share responsibility. Despite the fact that it is a shared responsibility, the end customer is ultimately responsible for protecting their data and managing risk.

Businesses aren’t the only ones who benefit from public cloud and ubiquitous SaaS apps. Cyber criminals have quickly embraced the cloud and understand how to exploit cloud and SaaS technology, looking for easy targets such as public-facing website misconfigurations that are simple to attack and monetize.

Comprehensive visibility eliminates blind spots

Hundreds of operational tools are used by organizations to manage on-premises and cloud-based workloads and SaaS applications. This disjointed approach leads to data silos and blind spots, which can compromise security and operational efficiency. Detecting and remediating threats wherever they reside can take longer and give cyber criminals a foothold in your infrastructure if you don’t have end-to-end visibility and control. Another common data challenge that can be overcome with a holistic approach to security analytics is filtering out false positives to get to actionable insights that matter to each organization.

Considerations for protecting cloud workloads

Augment your traditional technologies like anti-virus and anti-malware to assess how cloud security can strengthen your cybersecurity maturity. These businesses understand that financially motivated cyber criminals will exploit security gaps, whether on-premises or in the cloud or a hybrid approach.

Look for cloud security solutions that:

  • Cloud infrastructure solutions for AWS, Microsoft Azure, Google Cloud Platform (GCP), and SaaS applications like Microsoft 365 have become business critical. While infrastructure providers may provide basic cloud security, these tools can be difficult to understand and manage. Cloud data and assets, like on-premises assets, should be monitored and protected 24 hours a day, seven days a week. For better security decision-making, it’s also important to understand, configure, and use cloud log data.
  • Threat operations and total cost of ownership should be optimized: Get up and running quickly with cloud security as part of a comprehensive Managed Threat Protection platform. Instead of complex and expensive siloed software, enable your team to be more effective with a managed solution that embraces the cloud.
  • Integrate people, processes, and technology: Cloud computing and SaaS applications are just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to technology adoption. To realize the transformative benefits of cloud computing and SaaS efficiencies, documented procedures and cybersecurity expertise are required.

The threat landscape has evolved. Investment in cloud security capabilities helps future proof your portfolio and prepare you for the future.

Cloud adoption is a driver for enhanced cloud security

It’s critical to identify cloud security gaps and how to close them as you begin or expand your cloud journey. Gartner predicts a 23 percent increase in cloud spending. As a result, protecting cloud workloads and SaaS applications requires the same level of oversight and resources as protecting on-premises assets, albeit with the added challenge of a cybersecurity and cloud expert shortage. You now have access to comprehensive attack surface coverage for endpoints, data centers, and cloud workloads to simplify vendor and portfolio complexity. Learn more about CYB3R-X Managed Threat Protection, which includes cloud coverage for infrastructure providers like Amazon Web Services and Microsoft Azure, as well as out-of-the-box support for hundreds of SaaS applications.