Cloud Computing: Security Top Topic

Friday, June 3, 2011 @ 04:06 PM gHale

Talk around town (or the industry) is all about cloud computing. If you believe the forecasts, the global cloud computing market should hit over $121 billion by 2015.

While a manufacturing plant may not use cloud computing, the enterprise it connects to may, so that means security remains a top issue. Just how do you secure the cloud?

Computer industry research firm, IDC found in a survey that businesses are more concerned about the risks involved — including security, availability and performance — than with the benefits of flexibility, scalability and lower costs.

The cloud is here to stay, especially for small and midsize companies, and so, too, are concerns about cloud risk, according to a recent survey of more than 1,000 security professionals in the InformationWeek Analytics 2011 Strategic Security Survey. The survey shows top worry is security defects in the technology used by cloud providers — that is, the virtual machines, networks and databases powering the services.

The second most pressing concern is unauthorized access to, or leakage of, customer data. In addition, respondents said they worry big cloud vendors like Amazon and Microsoft may significantly change their offerings without notice, and that could affect security controls and technology requirements.

While humans are your greatest asset, they are also your weakest. Right now it seems employees are a greater threat than hackers.

Cyber-Ark’s fifth annual “Trust, Security and Passwords” report surveyed 1,422 IT staff and C-level professionals across North America and Europe, the Middle East and Africa (EMEA), and found nearly 20 percent of C-level respondents said they were victims of insider sabotage. Another 16% believe competitors may have received highly sensitive information or intellectual property from sources within their own organization.



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