Zero Trust – The silver lining of cyberattacks in the cloud

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The recent increase in the severity and sophistication of cyberattacks over the past few years may well signal a critical, albeit belated, shift in cybersecurity. The clamor of security practitioners regarding securing cloud technology through the use of technologies such as Zero Trust by businesses and organizations has never been strongerand it is not difficult to understand why.

Has a breach ever occurred in your cloud system?

Instead of implicitly trusting users or devices, Zero Trust assumes by default that a breach has already occurred and accounts have been compromised; it then rigorously and continuously tests users to prove their identity before granting them access to corporate networks, applications and tools. This is great when it comes to protecting against identity and access based security risks.

Focus on identity-based security

The Zero Trust technology security model eliminates trust in user authentication and validation processes and emphasizes identity-based security, particularly the surrounding context.

Authentication

This stands in stark contrast to less modern and more traditional means of authentication in which people, devices and networks enjoy inherent trust. Zero Trust technology ensures that every device on the network attempting to access gains trust through verification.

As the cyber threats facing the private and public sectors become increasingly persistent, it is essential that the security technologies tasked with protecting them are on par with, or better yet, even ahead of the technologies used for cyber attacks. . This is crucial to prevent them completely, as the damaging effects of a cyberattack are sometimes too severe for businesses to recover from.

Rainy days for cloud security

According to a 2021 Thales Global Cloud Security Study, a fifth (21%) of companies house most of their sensitive data in the cloud. However, sensitive data in the cloud becomes very daunting once you realize that 40% of companies surveyed reported a breach in the last year, and only 17% of respondents encrypted more than half of the data. stored in the cloud.

However, this figure drops to 15% where organizations have adopted a multi-cloud approach.

What about the teleworker and the cloud?

Also, with the exploding numbers workers working remotely and from the comfort of their homes, organizations and businesses are realizing that their security settings and technology must extend beyond the vicinity of their businesses.

Businesses must also address the increased need for employees to remotely access corporate network, data and resources. This implies that traditional legacy user authentication and access control are rendered inadequate, as they fail to protect cloud technology and prevent it from being used without authorization.

Cloud Computing and Enterprise Data Storage

Cloud computing is widely adopted by organizations and businesses for storing and managing data over the internet as it offers many benefits. And as technology advances, the amount of data companies store on computers and cloud servers has exploded.

Therefore, it is essential to work to protect the cloud infrastructure from the elusive potential threats that may form due to the adoption of several cloud-based applications, services, and solutions.

Cloud infrastructure and unauthorized data access

The significant risk facing an organization’s cloud infrastructure is unauthorized data access and data breaches.

According to a cloud security report, unauthorized access through inappropriate access controls and misuse of employee credentials is rated as one of the biggest threats to cloud security by 55 % of respondents.

Hackers, insiders with malicious intent, and even, in some cases, third-party vendors, can gain access to corporate data, networks, endpoints, devices, or applications.

Unauthorized access to data

Unauthorized data access and accompanying data breaches can have devastating effects on organizations; financial implications, irreversible damage to a company’s reputation, financial hardship due to regulatory implications, legal liabilities, incident response costs and decline in market value.

Implementing a cloud security system is crucial for protecting business resources and cloud infrastructure.

Organizations must leverage the technological benefits and security advancements of Zero Trust security to increase visibility into users and applications and prevent or even eliminate identity-based cyberattacks.

Zero Trust Cloud Security – The calm after the storm

Zero Trust does not refer to a single technology involved in user identity, remote user access, or network segmentation. Rather, it is a shift from the underlying technologies behind network defenses to a more comprehensive IT security model that allows organizations to restrict access controls to networks, applications, and environments without sacrificing performance. and user experience.

Zero Trust is a cybersecurity strategy or framework in which a secure cybersecurity and cloud infrastructure must be built to ensure maximum security.

It protects cloud technology through user authentication, verification and access management. Unfortunately, today’s cloud environments can be hostile places, hosting critical and sensitive data, making them a prime target for cyberattacks by hackers intent on stealing, destroying, or taking over. hostage of sensitive data as a ransom.

Government Agencies Require Zero Trust Security Model

Support for Zero Trust-based security technology comes from security practitioners and government agencies. For example, President Biden signed the Zero Trust Executive Order signed on May 12, 2021, requiring all US government agencies to include Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA), based on the Zero Trust security model in their security systems, essentially validating and approving the Zero Trust Security Principles and Framework.

Combined with US government endorsement, endorsement from top cybersecurity experts will go a long way in proving the validity and integrity of Zero Trust security. Zero Trust technology modernizes and secures important aspects of cloud computing and technology.

The biggest fear associated with cloud computing and storage is loss of visibility and access management. A Zero Trust strategy uses identity verification, authentication factors, authorization checks, and other identity and access management (IAM) and cybersecurity capabilities to verify a user before a level of trust is assigned.

Zero Trust aims to verify the identity of users requesting access and to determine what resources users should have access to and to what extent. This goes a long way in preventing insider threats and restricting sensitive data and information to only the necessary people.

With a Zero Trust security framework and architecture applied to cloud technology, enterprises have complete control over who can access their cloud assets and to what extent; it also gives companies the power to grant and revoke specific users’ access to specific assets as needed, giving them more visibility and control over their systems.

Since Zero Trust is based on the concept of “least privilege”, every user or device, even those previously connected to the network, is considered compromised. This reduces the risk of data breaches and cyberattacks by requiring hackers to validate and verify their identity before accessing corporate assets.

Proper identity verification goes a long way in protecting security systems against cyberattacks and data breaches, thereby reducing and eliminating the risks of poorly constructed and insecure security systems. Additionally, Zero Trust protects personal and valuable data held by businesses on cloud infrastructure, preventing multi-million dollar losses and protecting brand reputation.

  • User experience and ease of use

Zero Trust doesn’t need to provide an overly complex and unfriendly approach to user experience, as it can use user-friendly authentication technology like biometrics. While its complex yet effective access control protocols are performed behind the scenes and out of sight of end users.

When properly implemented, Zero Trust enables businesses and organizations to deliver and deploy easy-to-use, seamless authentication and technology tools that increase end-user adoption and strengthen asset security. Zero Trust also streamlines the end-user experience by not requiring administrator approval to access network assets.

All of these areas touched by Zero Trust will eventually be used to take digital security to new heights, and more companies will eventually adopt them. There is no doubt that the approaches outlined above will be essential in enabling organizations to navigate the ever-changing landscape of digital technology and security.

Zero Trust is not approved and recommended by cyber security experts for the way it secures the system. But because of its ability to do so and improve security visibility while providing a great user experience.

Conclusion

Zero Trust is definitely the technology that will transform the cloud security landscape. Zero Trust not only increases an organization’s cloud security, but also makes full use of enterprise applications without losing performance or negatively affecting user experience, making businesses see the need to secure their assets. cloud as well as customers’ need for convenient and transparent technology.

With the recent increase in the number and severity of cyberattacks, it is a stretch to assume that the cybersecurity landscape of the future will be more volatile than today. In light of this, business decision makers and IT departments would do well to think strategically about deploying robust security systems based on a Zero Trust security system.

Michel Usiagwu

Michael Usiagwu is the CEO of Visible Links Pro, a premium digital marketing agency committed to seeing your brands/businesses and products earn the right search engine visibility. He can be contacted via michael@visiblelinkspro.com


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