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Cloud Security Trends and How to Avoid Security Breaches

5/5/2022 | Yan Tandeta

We can observe that the need for intelligent security solutions has risen dramatically over recent years. This is because organizations are more concerned about their cloud security, data protection, and privacy, and they want to make sure that their sensitive data won’t be leaked, intercepted, or stolen by hackers or other cybercriminals.


Cloud computing has been a stepping stone for businesses to move to the cloud. But with the increased use of cloud-based services, there is a need for cloud security policies and frameworks. The cloud security trends have shifted from a defensive strategy to a proactive one called “shift left.” This strategy shifts more responsibility to developers and testers by making them more accountable for the code they write or test, respectively. DevSecOps helps teams integrate security into their SDLC (Software Development Lifecycle) process.

What is cloud security?

While DevOps focuses more on the speed of deployment and fast iteration, there seems to be a security gap that needs to be addressed to tackle the mismanagement of cloud environments and different stages of SDLC from the attackers that can harm the systems. 

Cloud security is a critical topic to discuss if you want to be a part of the cloud revolution. As more and more enterprises are going through digital transformation, they are moving their traditional methods of creating software, data storage, and infrastructure to the cloud.

The shift-left paradigm is a strategy used in DevOps to address security issues earlier in the software development cycle, and this approach has been proven to be really effective in preventing security vulnerabilities from being introduced into your software.

Recent cloud security reports and insights

  • The state of cloud security 2021 report collected responses from 300 cloud engineer professionals, designed by Fugue and Sonatype, found that 36% of companies in the past 12 months have experienced a severe cloud security data leak or a breach. 
  • Another report on cloud data security by Netwrix stated that 54% of organizations that store customer data in the cloud had security incidents in the past 12 months.
  • The state of cloud security posture management report of 2021 by OpsCompass reported 55% of companies experiencing a breach.
  • In 2021 cloud security report by Cybersecurity insiders found that despite the rapid adoption of cloud computing, security still persists as a primary issue for most cloud customers.
  • Aqua’s cloud security report found that cloud misconfigurations have become the biggest headache in recent days that pose huge security risks. The report shows that, due to cloud misconfigurations, 90% of companies being vulnerable to security breaches.

Five trends leading the cloud security

There is a lot to talk about when it comes to security, but we believe that these are the trends below that are leading the way for cloud security.

  • Security-first and shift-left approach:

Thinking of security as the utmost priority has led to so many improvements in reducing the security risks. Today, developers are encouraged to create software and code securely and manage their features in a highly secured manner. Furthermore, shifting left when it comes to security has proven added advantages of mitigating the time taken to release quality software by finding bugs very early in the development life cycle. This way, security is never considered an afterthought but rather an essential piece from code to production. 

Making security everyone’s job by default is the new mantra.

  • Automating security in SDLC:

By embracing DevOps, you mean to achieve zero-touch automation throughout. The same is followed in automating security by utilizing the modern cloud-native CI/CD tools and workflows that can scan and test vulnerabilities in the early stages of SDLC. 

Automation makes sure security becomes part of SDLC seamlessly. In addition, it helps in injecting a security compliance and governance process, which will enforce developers to implement security as a default part of the software development. Secure SDLC aims to curb vulnerabilities in deployed software and production. Having fine security checkpoints at each stage of the SDLC makes it highly unlikely that any bug to be found in the production. 

  • Employing AI and ML in cloud security:

There is a lot of talk around the use of AI and ML in DevSecOps these days, and it is true. One of the most encouraging and advanced uses of AI in cybersecurity is to employ AI systems to crawl and trawl throughout historical data to recognize the attack patterns. With the advancements in data science, the ML models are trained to let the security teams know where the security gaps are and opportunities for breaches, so the team can know the irregularities earlier and fix them. 

AI systems are extremely good at tracking and knowing if any foreign identity has entered the system. This allows administrators, network, and security teams to block any such entity. This kind of functionality is now getting adopted by many cloud providers these days, and they even ship it with their basic cloud storage systems. 

  • RBAC and identity security:

Enterprises employ RBAC and identity security management systems these days as part of their cybersecurity policy.

Role-based access control systems and identity security are the integral components of zero-trust. They ensure that only authorized and specific users having access to the workloads and systems. RBAC restricts an unauthorized entity from gaining access to the system. 

Since clearly established roles, pre-defiled, pre-approved access policies, and permissions are prescribed in RBAC & identity security, companies use this methodology to mitigate the security threats from outside. 

  • Securing with BYOK:

As business-critical applications move to the cloud, BYOK (bring your own key) becomes highly essential for data security and privacy. The three big cloud service providers – Amazon Web Services (AWS), Google Cloud Platform (GCP), and Microsoft Azure allow users to BYOK as part of data security. 

Along with cloud adoption, the encryption market is also growing.

To ensure solid compliance, governance, and internal security, enterprises need to manage control over their cryptographic keys. Using BYOK is vital for alleviating security risks as it enables companies to keep command of their critical keys while fully benefiting from cloud capabilities. Another benefit of BYOK is that the customer does get into a cloud vendor lock-in mode. Moving data from one cloud provider to another would be a tedious and costly task without BYOK.

How to mitigate cloud security breaches?

Traditionally when you deploy an application, you have the entire data center, the servers, etc., and you are responsible for all of that. But when you move to the cloud, it’s a shared responsibility between you and the cloud provider. Hence, it becomes crucial to re-think security on your responsibilities and what the cloud providers are responsible for. 

When you take a simple example of PaaS, you build applications, migrate data to the cloud, and build applications running on the cloud. So here, you are responsible for securing the applications, the workload, and the data, while the cloud provider is responsible for managing the platform’s security so that it’s compliant and secure. 

With the recent significant solar winds attack, the companies have become highly involved in upgrading their security game. Also, we saw that Biden’s executive order on cybersecurity has gained huge momentum among the software companies to comply with the security standards mentioned in the order. 

Mentioning below some of the points to keep in mind to mitigate cloud security breaches

  • Limit access to your most valuable data by having access control and identity management.
  • Make third-party vendors comply with your company’s security governance rules and policies.
  • Employ a multi-cloud strategy, so you get the added benefits from different cloud providers without the risk of vendor lock-in.
  • Make security checkpoints mandatory at each stage of your SDLC to mitigate the risk of bugs being caught in the production.
  • Use a modern CI/CD tool to automate the builds and run multiple tests.
  • Use a solid security scanning and vulnerability tool to find bugs and any license violations very early in the SDLC.
  • Use AI and ML to find, report automatically, and stop any unauthorized entities from entering the system.
  • Have often security training for your employees and make it mandatory to attend.
  • Have a prompt security response team to address any attacks if they happen.
  • Monitor your applications, workloads, and environments in real-time to detect anomalies and possible threats.
  • Have a log management system/tool in place to easily check logs to see what caused the errors in the system.
  • Cloud security has taken center stage today; with the ever-increasing focus on DevSecOps, companies are embracing different tools and techniques to mitigate security risks and attacks. With every popular cloud trend, attackers always lookout for opportunities, and hence security becomes too critical. For example, while hybrid and multi-cloud approaches have become popular since they provide many valuable benefits, they pose multiple security threats, and cloud security strategies are highly recommended.


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