One of the most prominent security challenges IT managers will see with multi-cloud storage is the lack of visibility into how data is stored and transferred within cloud platforms. It can cause frustration and, in some cases, raise security questions.
Multi-cloud storage is tricky
The truth is, multi-cloud storage is complicated simply by the fact that not all cloud services are the same. How your data is managed is dependent on whom your cloud is managed by. Often there is a lack of integration between services, which makes it challenging to coordinate threat information and identify anomalies that might show a data breach or the presence of malware. Using multiple cloud services increases the number of attack surfaces in your organization. The more services used, the higher the risk.
Multi-cloud storage can result in environments that are continuously shifting, complicating data management. To further complicate things, you must take into consideration mobile device data that all need to connect to data stores because the majority of people in the modern world are using more than just a desktop computer to work. At the same time, cybercriminals have become more evolved as they step up both the number and types of attacks implemented.
Given these challenges, finding ways to secure a multi-cloud environment can be an overwhelming task. If you are stuck with using multiple clouds, make sure your security strategy starts with a full circle plan to prevent problems before they happen and to mitigate issues immediately if they arise.
Multi-cloud storage security planning
The multi-cloud strategy includes a holistic approach to protecting data information. Organizations must evaluate data flow and storage patterns, as well as the organization's current security and required compliance components.
Understanding how each participating cloud platform protects data and secures systems
If you don't understand how your information is secured, then you need to brush up on the basics of cloud storage. To fully understand what your organization needs, you should determine what integration capabilities each platform supports and if the provider offers APIs for interfacing with its service. You will also want to know whether customers can control their security certificates, what capabilities for monitoring are supported, and any other details necessary for understanding the storage environment.
The goal is to create a unified, integrated security strategy that incorporates multiple layers of protection across all systems. A multi-cloud storage strategy should include firewalls, data encryption, intrusion prevention, penetration testing, multi-factor authentication, monitoring and logging, malware, denial-of-service protection, network access controls, and other safeguards that to minimize risk.
Ensure that security protocols are implemented as a single, centralized approach to create communication across all systems. This lets components operate as part of a coordinated, integrated effort rather than individual systems. It can also allow you to gain the visibility necessary to identify and address potential threats across all systems, without having to monitor siloed systems.
Visibility and coordination
To support such a complex infrastructure, your organization must have tools that easily integrate and provide the flexibility required to operate across a distributed, multi-cloud network. Multi-cloud storage security systems must have systems in place to detect threats and automate notifications and responses to those threats. Many tools have incorporated "machine learning," AI integration, and other technologies that make the analysis of large amounts of data retrieved from systems across a network possible.
Remember, this approach is only successful when implemented as part of a unified strategy in which all components of your storage system are coordinated, communicating and working together to provide a single, comprehensive solution.
Backup your cloud data
Lastly, you need to make sure that all of your cloud data is backed up using best practices for easy recoverability and protection against cybercrime. If your organization is using SaaS with cloud storage like Google Suite or Microsoft Office 365, these SaaS only guarantee the infrastructure. They do not guarantee the protection of your data. Cloud applications like these must be integrated into a larger cloud backup solution that provides redundancy and recoverability. The strategy of separating redundant backup copies from your central system is the only way to protect your organization's data against ransomware infection.
If you are interested in information about how SEP protects data in hybrid and multi-cloud environments, please contact us.