Over recent years, more businesses are embracing cloud security. There are many benefits of using cloud storage, even for small businesses. For example, small businesses would profit from the cost-effectiveness of using cloud storage. You cut down on costs for purchasing, running, and maintaining data in the storage infrastructure.
Other benefits of cloud storage include its reliability, accessibility, and scalability. These are some of the reasons most companies are relying on enterprise cloud services. These services cater to both privately owned clouds and public clouds. Some of the most common public clouds include Google Cloud Platform, Amazon Web Services (AWS), and Microsoft Azure.
Cloud storage can be the key to the success of your business, however, it comes with its challenges. There are cloud security risks to worry about.
Cloud Security Risks
According to research, worldwide end-user spending for cloud services is expected to reach 591 billion USD by 2023. The number is set to increase given how convenient cloud storage is for large organizations.
The rising concern of cloud security has created a niche market for cyber security experts. Some companies have also sprung up to cater to and manage cloud security risks within businesses.
Let us look at some of the cloud security risks you should be worried about:
1. Data Leak via Your Employees
Data leaks due to your employees are one of the greatest risks to your company’s cloud security. There are multiple ways our employees could be vulnerable. The list includes using weak passwords and sharing sensitive information. Human error could be innocent but sometimes these mistakes are intentional.
There are insider threats you need to worry about. These include former employees, vendors, or business partners with access to your cloud services. Therefore, you need to train your employees on data security practices and set up security controls to manage insider threats.
2. Configuration Errors
Cloud security risks can occur due to incorrect configuration of cloud services. These errors may happen when you fail to implement security controls provided by the cloud service provider. Also, an error might be possible if you have multiple vendors, providing security controls leading to a mix-up.
Without proper measures in place, you leave your data open to attacks of all manner. This can be detrimental to your company’s reputation. This is why leading businesses make it mandatory to integrate sophisticated cloud security products into their development and deployment processes.
Companies like Retrain.AI, Glassbox, and ITV have found solace in Lightspin to manage their cloud security risks. With your cloud security taken care of, your businesses can focus on other pressing areas of their operations.
3. Multi-Tenancy Issues
Cloud infrastructure shared among multiple customers can potentially create security risks. Multi-tenancy means that many clients are using the same computing resources on an enterprise cloud service. However, cloud customers are not aware of each other.
The danger arises when one tenant’s data is compromised. This breach has the potential of affecting other tenants using the same resources.
4. DDoS Attacks
Cloud-based services are also vulnerable to Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attacks. These attacks disrupt service availability through spamming requests to increase internet traffic to a service. The attack may lead to slow services or crashes in the infrastructure.
5. Insecure Interfaces/APIs
APIs allow data transfer to connect a business to its customers, partners, or suppliers. The privilege levels and data policies at endpoints could risk your security and create a data breach.
Impact of Cloud Security Risks
The impact of the security risks differs, however, each has the potential to damage your business. Let us look at the potential implication of failure in neutralizing cloud security risks:
1. Data Loss
You stand the risk of losing sensitive data in cloud security-related incidents. Such incidents can be costly to recover from, considering the time and money used. Losing data may also damage an organization’s reputation.
2. Compliance violations
With the rising concern about data security and the handling of private information, the need for data regulation and data protection policies has increased. This regulation is through acts and policies like HIPAA, PCI-DSS, and GDPR which uphold data protection.
All organizations are expected to comply with the roles stipulated in the guidelines to protect their data. Some of the security risks may put you at risk of failing to comply with these policies resulting in legal action.
3. Business Disruption
Cloud computing security threats such as DDoS attacks will disrupt an organization’s operations. The impact may include causing downtime that impacts productivity and revenue generation.
4. Financial Losses
Cloud security penetrations may lead to financial losses in a company. The losses may include the cost of recovering from a data breach or the disruption in operations. Fines and penalties from lawsuits are other losses to consider.
5. Damage to Reputation
Your brand is at risk when it comes to security risks. A data breach can lead to the loss of customers and long-term damage to your brand. People are less willing to do business with entities that have had security issues in the past. They fear it might happen again, so they steer clear.
6. Loss of Intellectual Property
In 2022, RockStar games were the victim of a data breach. The data break leaked images and videos of one of their games still in development. Such a data breach may impact the company’s competitiveness in its market. It can even disrupt their marketing strategies.
How to Reduce Cloud Security Risks?
Given the risks involved, you need to take steps to improve your security for cloud storage and reduce risks. Some of the best practices to mitigate cloud computing security risks include:
- Incorporating multi-factor authentication into your system.
- Cultivating cybersecurity awareness and offering cybersecurity training to your employees.
- Implementing access control measures to limit the amount of access a given party has.
- Setting up data encryption and ensuring proper management and handling of description keys.
- Implementing effective incident response plans.
- Using cloud security posture management to automate your cloud security management
Businesses today are embracing cloud storage solutions to manage their data. Cloud storage comes with many benefits but, there are some challenges as well. There are multiple threats to your hybrid cloud security that need to be addressed.
APIs, multi-tenancy, and configuration errors are areas of concern with cloud storage. These areas could leave your cloud storage vulnerable to attack. Your employees could also be a cloud security risk. Therefore, you must train them in cybersecurity.