Cloud Security Challenges

Cloud network security is challenged by the continued presence of the on-premise network. In today’s environment, security policy must be managed comprehensively across the hybrid network that comes about as a result of the connection between the on-premise data center and the cloud estate that now hosts a growing number of applications. Cloud compliance with regulations and security policy is no less essential than in the data center.

Organizations that employ the cloud often use the services of more than one cloud vendor. The multi-cloud usage trend is likely to continue. These organizations now need to manage

♦ On-premise security

♦ Cloud security

♦ And Inter-cloud network security emanating from multi-cloud use

As more and more applications are migrated to the cloud, network security teams face an onslaught of new cloud security challenges.

SOLVING THE CLOUD NETWORK SECURITY CONUNDRUM

Cloud security architecture is fundamentally different than its on-premise counterpart. Whereas the data center perimeter is protected by physical firewalls, cloud security challenges are met by a layered approach. Whether we are talking about AWS cloud security, Azure could security, or any other public cloud, today’s public cloud security employs four layers of increasing protection.

Layer 1: Security Groups

The first layer of cloud network security protection is provided by security groups. These are the most fundamental aspect of centrally managing public cloud security. The security group manages rules that allow traffic. Unlike traditional firewalls that control traffic based on both allow and deny rules, security groups enact allow rules only and do not have deny rules. There is no rule to deny traffic; the absence of an allow rule acts as the denial. Cloud security groups actually resemble the firewalls we had back in the ‘90s. In those days, host-based firewalls sat on the servers themselves and if you broke into the server you also gained access to the firewall’s security settings. Likewise, the first layer of cloud network security is directly connected to servers (instances, in cloud architecture terms). As with the old firewalls, once an instance is penetrated, control of the associated security group(s) is exposed, presenting a substantial risk that can compromise cloud security posture. So, enterprises adopt more stringent cloud-based network security controls.

Layer 2: Network Access Control Lists (NACLs)

Network Access Control Lists (NACLs), used to provide AWS cloud security and Azure cloud security. Each NACL is connected to a Virtual Private Network (VPC) in AWS or VNet, its equivalent in Azure. NACLs control all the instances in that VPC or VNet. The centralized NACLs hold both allow and deny rules and makes cloud security posture much stronger than Layer 1. No doubt, cloud security compliance requires this layer.

Layer 3: Cloud Vendor Security Solution

One example, the new MS Azure FWaaS, a next-generation secure internet gateway, acts like a wall between the cloud itself and the internet. The vendors are well aware of the cloud security threats and thus include their own solutions.

Layer 4: 3rd Party Cloud Security Solution

Traditional firewall vendors include solutions from Check Point (CloudGuard) and Palo Alto Networks (VM-Series), for example. These 3rd parties create firewalls that stand between the public clouds, and the outside world and, in addition, segmentize the cloud’s inner perimeter much like an on-premise network. Network security architecture in the cloud should adopt this fourth layer for ultimate hybrid cloud security challenges.

Visibility

You can’t protect what you can’t see. Visibility is essential to security and rapid incident response. Obtaining full visibility across the entire hybrid network requires a deep understanding of the hybrid network’s topology and the flows between on-premise networks and cloud providers and across multi-cloud environments. The more heterogenous the network, the more complex it becomes. Complexity is the enemy of security. Across the vast landscape of physical equipment, virtual firewalls, and public-cloud network security groups, security teams find it difficult to obtain a clear picture of application-connectivity requirements and overall network security.

Maintaining Compliance Posture

Cloud compliance is absolutely necessary for the business but is a nuisance for the IT staff. With the recent introduction of the GDPR and the growing body of legal and industrial regulations, compliance is taking up more and more effort and time of IT departments and especially security staff. Keeping up with the numerous regulations that are found in a growing number of geographies and industries is challenging enough in a single-cloud-provider environment. Cloud compliance challenges multiply rapidly in heterogeneous environments.

Multiple Consoles

Cloud compliance is absolutely necessary for the business but is a nuisance for the IT staff. With the recent introduction of the GDPR and the growing body of legal and industrial regulations, compliance is taking up more and more effort and time of IT departments and especially security staff. Keeping up with the numerous regulations that are found in a growing number of geographies and industries is challenging enough in a single-cloud-provider environment. Cloud compliance challenges multiply rapidly in heterogeneous environments.

Wrapping it up

AlgoSec addresses cloud security concerns by delivering business-driven security management across on-premise, hybrid and multi-cloud environments. With AlgoSec, enterprises fend off cloud security threats by maintaining a uniform security policy across their entire network and cloud estates. From a single console, security teams can see across their on-prem and virtual networks and into all of their clouds. They obtain accurate policy change automation across their physical and virtual firewalls as well as into their public cloud deployments via cloud-vendor and 3rd-party controls. The AlgoSec approach bestows numerous critical cloud security benefits for the enterprise:

  • AlgoSec automatically discovers, maps and migrates application connectivity to the cloud through easy-to-use workflows.
  • Prior to making any changes, AlgoSec assesses all proposed network security policy changes for risk to ensure secure network access and to avoid application outages and compliance violations.
  • AlgoSec delivers unified security policy management across traditional and next-generation firewalls deployed on-premise as well as cloud security controls, including AWS and Azure, to ensure that the entire enterprise environment is always secure and compliant.

Resources

Discover how AlgoSec can help your cloud network security in the hybrid-cloud and multi-cloud environment.

Managing Effective Security Policies Across Hybrid and Multi-Cloud Environment

Enterprises are not only migrating applications to the cloud from on-premise data centers, but they are developing multi-cloud strategies to take advantage of availability and cost...

Movin’ On Up to the Cloud: How to Migrate your Application Connectivity

Migrating applications to the cloud or to another data center is a complex and risky process. First, you need to understand the applications you are currently running (application ...

Hybrid Cloud Environments: The State of Security

This research report uncovers key trends and best practices for managing network security across on-premise data centers and the public cloud.

Hybrid Cloud Environments: The State of Security

This infographic showcases key trends and best practices for managing network security across on-premise data centers and the public cloud.

Hybrid Cloud Security Configuration and Policy Management

In on-premises data centers, all of your data was secured behind lock and key and guarded by physical firewalls in locations that you could physically access. Today, your network i...

Additional Features

AlgoSec's Cloud Network Security Solution

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Cloud Visibility

Visibility across hybrid, on-premise
and multi-cloud estates from a business-application perspective

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Application Connectivity

Understanding the impact of network flows and security controls on application network connectivity

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Multi-cloud & Hybrid

Managing security policies across multi-cloud and hybrid environments through automation with zero touch

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Cloud Compliance

Maintaining security cloud compliance posture across multi-cloud and hybrid-cloud environments

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Multi-cloud Management

Capability of handling multiple cloud-management portals

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Cloud Security Training

Optimal training of security personnel—one console, one language—for the entire heterogeneous network

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