To help you better understand multicloud and hybrid cloud security, this article will cover the key factors along with the pros and cons of the main approaches between each so that you can more accurately weigh the risks versus the rewards. Cloud-based environments are proliferating throughout our personal and business networks, meaning that you statistically already have some version of either model incorporated into your technology stack, adding cyber threats that you are not aware of. Only by gaining a more complete understanding of the cybersecurity needs of these various paradigms will you be able to maximize the value of your investment in either (or both).
Here is what you need to know to better understand multicloud and hybrid cloud security:
The Basics of All Cloud Security First
There are several universal pros and cons for cloud-based cybersecurity, many of which Secure Cloud Services has covered at length previously. No matter which environment(s) you are leveraging, you will always need to have some level of:
- Identity management controls
- Up-to-date protections
- File sharing permissions
- Data security controls
- Frequent backups
- Proactive monitoring
- Data storage & network operation redundancies
- User security policies
- Privacy compliance enforcement
- Access to an Internet connection for updates
Many of these features are provided natively with certain SaaS (software as a service) and web-based solutions, but could have to be manually enabled or implemented in a hybridized environment, for example. This is one of multiple subtle differences to keep in mind when comparing hosting models and determining your exact security policy for each.
What is a Hybrid Cloud?
A hybrid cloud uses a mix of resources from at least two different environments, typically one being on-premise and the other hosted, though this can also include different private and public clouds. The key benefit to this approach is being able to keep using the hardware you already have while gaining additional bandwidth without having to invest in new servers and storage space, along with the security advantages of having a local database. However, the latter will be moot if you do not mind the cybersecurity gap between modern and legacy applications.
On-Premise Software Security Changes
By the very nature of the transition, SaaS and hosted systems must have a different level of native security than traditional siloed solutions were able to get away with, but if you combine the two then you need to secure the backdoors. On-premise software built on legacy code - as well as outdated server hardware - are not equipped to handle modern cyber threats and could leave you exposed if not configured properly. Additionally, the difference in architecture means that you will lack a universal standard of visibility between both environments, contributing to a potentially more complex security posture.
What is Multicloud?
Multicloud refers to when you have an environment made up of resources hosted by multiple vendors, ranging from multiple applications and platforms delivered as a service to a mix of several environments contained within a single architecture. This approach enables many organizations to implement a wider array of tools and features while maintaining their desired level of quality and costs.
A Mess of Clouds
There is still some debate on what constitutes a multicloud environment, especially considering that most technology consumers are typically transitioning between multiple cloud services in their personal and professional lives. Just because you use the same computer to log into your work email, payroll software and Netflix account through a browser does not exactly mean you are in a multicloud - though when it comes to cybersecurity, the end result is similar. Your attack surface will be spread across all the different portals and databases you are using, giving you a much greater scale of endpoints to secure.
One Cloud Hosting Vendor VS Many Providers
Choosing between a multicloud, hybrid cloud or unified cloud environment is a battle between consolidation and flexibility, meaning that the choice lies between service options as much as the technology itself. You will be deciding between the pros and cons of having multiple vendors for your mix of services and applications, and those of a single hosting provider. As a far as security concerned, you will have to mind any gaps that could appear between each solution and take care that every connection in your technology stack is hardened against exposure.
Keys to Both Multicloud & Hybrid Cloud Security
Multicloud and hybrid cloud environments retain many of the same cybersecurity needs as their consolidated SaaS and web-based counterparts, with the biggest differences often lying in scale, placement and distribution of where resources are applied. Whether it is juggling multiple clouds or the connection with an on-premise component, there still needs to be endpoint monitoring, authentication management and the expertise to handle this and more.
The keys to cloud security are visibility and policy, so your posture for your hybrid and multicloud instances must depend on how both can be applied to your specific deployment. If you cannot accurately perform a risk assessment for data exposure or limit the damage of human error, then you know your environment is in danger.
What is the Most Secure Cloud Option?
To find out which type of cloud is most secure for your business, you need to ask which will be most efficient for your team to manage? Some companies have the internal capacity to balance the data segregation requirements their service providers and software do not pick up themselves, while others are harder pressed to keep an eye on every file with the headcount and resources they possess. Many still only have to worry about a few applications that can be consolidated with the same trusted hosting provider, while some want to keep their options open for connecting best-of-breed solutions - it all comes down to what delivers the best ROI for you.
Learn More About Cloud-based Cybersecurity
Secure Cloud Services will help you get a better handle on your cybersecurity needs, whether you want to condense all of your disparate applications under our hosting service or maintain multiple partners for your various solutions. The continued security of your critical data and your peace of mind are our top priorities - reach out to us today and let us help you ensure your software is as protected as it can be.
Contact SCS today to learn more about the various cybersecurity requirements for hybrid cloud and multicloud, and discover which will work best for you.