As hybrid cloud growth continues to grow, companies need to increase their efforts to ensure security and compliance policies apply to data and applications in the cloud. While using hybrid cloud for disaster recovery introduces limited challenges, more sophisticated uses of hybrid cloud that split processing between public and private clouds means security and controls need to be more comprehensive and extensive.
Separate Environments and Separate Tools Challenge Hybrid Cloud
One of the biggest challenges in the hybrid cloud is achieving interoperable security. Tools that don't work across all your environments mean every cloud's security is managed individually. As a result, it's difficult to apply security policies consistently across all clouds, and dashboards that display information for just one cloud make it hard to review the security status of your overall environment.
Strategy for Security in a Hybrid Cloud
Despite the management and monitoring challenges, you can achieve security and compliance in your hybrid cloud through using effective tools, technologies, and processes:
- Choose certified cloud providers. Before doing anything else, make sure that your cloud vendors provide environments certified for compliance with the standards that apply to your industry.
- Identity and access management. Use public clouds that provide federated identity management that integrates with the single sign-on solution you are using internally. Besides simplifying one of your most important controls, it improves the user experience.
- Use encryption everywhere. Ensure that data is encrypted both in transit and at rest. Retain control over your encryption keys rather than relying on the cloud provider to manage them.
- Monitor departmental clouds. Keep a close eye on the IT managed by your departments rather than through your IT team. Offer them a list of approved cloud services that meet compliance standards to ensure that shadow IT doesn't leverage vendors that don't provide enough security.
- Keep clouds under centralized control. Hybrid cloud necessarily means multiple clouds. Although the vendor relationships with the cloud providers may be managed separately, you need a unified approach to monitoring and managing them to ensure security and compliance covers your entire organization.
- Update policies that manage data traffic. The loss of the network boundary that comes with cloud means allowing more integration points while controlling the data that crosses them. Make sure your firewalls allow the necessary communication while still blocking potentially dangerous traffic.
- Support your staff with training and automation. Provide your team with the necessary training to enhance their understanding of cloud risks and the tools to manage them. Use automation as much as possible to ensure configurations and policies are correctly implemented and distributed across all environments.
Consult with experts to make sure your hybrid cloud architecture meets your important business goals while securing your vital business data. dcVAST offers expertise in architecting and managing hybrid cloud with tools from vendors such as Nutanix, NetApp, and Amazon Web Services. Contact us to learn more about how to make your hybrid cloud secure and compliant.