Biggest Security Threats Facing Cloud Computing

April 11, 2014 | By | Reply More

Cloud computing is probably one of the most innovative ideas in computing these days. It has quickly drawn the attention of many companies, world wide, but it could show even more progress if it wasn’t for a number of vulnerabilities. Security is the number one problem that endangers cloud computing and makes many possible clients hesitant to outsource to this service.

Biggest Security Threats Facing Cloud Computing

Cloud Security Alliance (CSA) has determined that the threat that cybercriminals pose is the most prominent and the thing that gives the biggest headache to the industry.

The Notorious Nine

At first glance the name takes us back to the Wild West and that is not an image of “safety” that a perspective internet service wants to be connected to. Studies have shown that the top nine threats for the year 2013 include:

  • Data Breaches
  • Data Loss
  • Account Hijacking
  • Insecure APIs
  • Denial of Service
  • Malicious Insiders
  • Abuse of Cloud Services
  • Insufficient Due Diligence
  • Shared Technology Issues

Investigations have shown that the financially motivated cybercrime is the biggest reason for data breaches (70%) and it is followed by espionage campaigns (20%). Biggest criminal campaigns included theft of intellectual property such as trade secrets, classified information and technical resources.

As far as data loss is concerned, about forty-three percent of users experience some kind of loss of data in the cloud (with the backup system malfunctioning in many cases). The other threats to the cloud are abuse of cloud services, malicious insiders, insufficient planning on how to use cloud services and the vulnerabilities that may exist as a consequence of the manner a cloud provider uses in order to design its infrastructure.

Hacking Turns out to be Rather Easy

Several studies, including those from the Universities of North Caroline and Wisconsin, have shown that crating a virtual machine that would be able to infiltrate cloud information is actually a rather simple task. Such a machine would only need to steal or extract private cryptographic keys that other virtual machines on the same server used. To make things worse, a single flaw in the design of the database provides an open door for possible hacker attack.

How Can We Protect Ourselves?

There are many steps and methods a cloud company could use to improve its security. The four things that are always recommended are:

  1. Switching focus away from technologies and platforms onto information and people.
  2. Creation of policies that are supposed to educate, enforce and monitor certain rules.
  3. Embracing platform agnostic tools.
  4. Always creating a copy or a duplicate of the date in cloud.

Every company needs to understand the risks that we are all facing today and take into account everything that is yet to come with the progress of technology. This is something that can be applied to problems with cloud, but also with every issue in general. Awareness, diligence and proper education of both workers and client is a good path towards success.


Category: Internet

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