How Safe is “the Cloud”?

26 Jun

When sensitive data sits outside the corporate firewall concerns abound over the security of the cloud. Recent articles set out to tap into this fear and provide insight into how secure cloud services really are.

CIO.com collected survey data to see how our peers view the security of the cloud…that info was gathered into this infographic.

cloud security“As more enterprise resources move to the cloud, it’s inevitable that we will start hearing more about cloud incidents. Minor breaches have already hit GoGrid and the Microsoft Business Productivity Online Suite, but we’ve yet to see anything on the scale of TJX, the VA, RSA or any number of other on-premise breaches.” (cio.com)

An advantage in using a “big name” cloud service provider such as Google or Amazon, you know that their reputation is on the line if a data breach were to occur…therefore it is in their best interest to secure the environment.

The majority of companies agree that their most sensitive data should stay behind corporate firewalls…however, according to CIO this logic is flawed.

Carson Sweet, CEO of CloudPassage, discussed a client CloudPassage worked with (who prefers to remain anonymous) who had development servers in the cloud. A hacker placed a rootkit onto one of the virtual servers. When the developers noticed something was off with their servers, they brought them back behind the corporate firewall to re-image them. Unfortunately, they brought the rootkit in with them, infecting their entire network.

“Virtual machines can server as Trojan horses if you’re not careful,” Sweet said.


I can see the many benefits of using cloud services, but knowing my data is safe is important as well. Does the key to security lie in encryption? I would need an cryptographer to answer that one.

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