Security has long been the No. 1 cloud computing business concern. Although the apprehension is absolutely valid, cloud computing business decision and strategies are all too often driven by the many broadly shared misconceptions and misunderstandings. They include:
- Public cloud is more easily breached that a private cloud
- Any infrastructure that you manage or own is more secure than any cloud computing infrastructure
- Cloud-hosted applications are technically no different than enterprise-hosted applications
- The cloud service provider infrastructure and personnel will address and remediate all security issues
- The end user has very little control over cloud security
- A corporate network provides protection even when using cloud apps
- Cloud platforms lack security features and cloud providers offer no visibility into their platform
- Strong authentication mechanisms are sufficient for ensuring security
These troubling facts are why I was thrilled last month when cloud computing security industry leaders Cloud Security Alliance (CSA) and the International Information System Security Certification Consortium ((ISC)²) addressed this issue head-on by collaborating on the development and release of the Certified Cloud Security Professional (CCSP) Certification Program. Both nonprofits, their individual missions and goals are synergistic:
CSA: To promote best practices for providing security assurance within cloud computing and provide education on the uses of cloud computing to help secure all other forms of computing.
(ISC)²: To support and provide members and constituents with credentials, resources, and leadership to secure information and deliver value to society.
By stepping up to the challenge of cloud security certification, these organizations are explicitly addressing their missions.
Vendors are also stepping up. According to a recent CRN article, commercial cloud security platforms are helping enterprises mitigate the risks of using cloud-based applications and services. These offering are providing strong data protection capabilities by incorporating data loss prevention, data encryption and tokenization. Some cloud security companies provide identity and access