Cloud Computing continues to transform the way in which organizations use, store, and share data, applications, and the workload. Unfortunately, Cloud Computing has also introduced a variety of security threats and challenges. With so much going into the cloud and into public cloud servers, in particular, these assets become the natural targets for security threats.
According to the Vice President and the Cloud Security Lead at Gartner Inc, Jay Helser, “The volume of public cloud utilization is growing rapidly so that inevitably leads to a greater body of sensitive stuff that is potentially at risk.”
In contrast to what people might think, the major responsibility for protecting corporate data in the cloud does not lie with the service provider but with the cloud customer. According to Heiser, “We are in a cloud security transition period in which focus is shifting from the provider to the customer.” He states, “Enterprises are learning that huge amounts of time spent trying to figure out if any particular cloud service provider is ‘secure’ or not has virtually no payback.”
Following are the top cloud security threats regarding cloud-security issues:
To breach the data might be the main objective of the targeted attack, or it might just be a result of human error, application failure, or poor security practices. It may involve any type of information which was not intended for the public. This includes personal information regarding health, financial information, personality identifiable information, property information, or trade secrets. The organization’s cloud-based data might hold value to different parties for various reasons. The risk of the data being breached is not unique to that of cloud computing. However, it does consistently rank as number one when it comes to customers.
Insecure interfaces and application programming interfaces (APIs)
Cloud providers have exposed various software user interfaces (UIs) or application programming interfaces (APIs) that the customers can use to manage and interact with the cloud services. Provisioning, management, and monitoring are all performed using these interfaces. The security and the availability of the general cloud services are dependent on the security of the APIs. They should be designed to defend against accidental and malicious attempts to circumvent the policy.
Insufficient identity, credential, and access management
Criminals impersonating legitimate employers, operators, or designers can read, change, and sometimes even delete data. They can issue the control plane and management functions and steal data in transition or even release malicious software that appears to initiate from a genuine source. Consequently, inadequate identity, qualification, or key administration can enable illegal access to data as well as hypothetically catastrophic damage to organizations or end-users.
Account hijacking or hacking is one of the oldest kinds of cloud corruption. However, cloud services have added a new threat to the landscape. If the attackers gain access to the user’s credentials, the hackers can easily eavesdrop on numerous activities and transactions taking place. They can also manipulate the data, return the falsified information, and redirect the customers to illegitimate websites. The account and service instances may become the new base used by attackers. With these stolen credentials, hackers might also gain access to critical areas of cloud computing services, allowing them to easily compromise the confidentiality, availability, and integrity of those services.
System vulnerabilities can be defined as exploitable bugs in systems which attackers can easily use to penetrate a system for data theft, taking entire control of the system and/or disrupting the service operations. Susceptibilities within the operating system apparatuses might put the security of all these services along with the data at significant risk. With the introduction of multi-tenancy in the cloud, schemes from various establishments have been placed close to each other and given access to the shared memory and resources, which creates a new attack surface.
The data stored in the cloud might be lost for various reasons other than malicious attacks. Data could be lost due to accidental deletion by the cloud service provider or even because of a physical catastrophe like a fire or an earthquake. This might lead to permanent data loss until and unless the provider has taken measures to properly back the data up.
Denial of Service (DoS)