It took us a quite a while to start trusting the cloud. Even after that, it took years to find out the best option between a private and public cloud. We have now reached a point where businesses are shifting towards a more hybrid IT infrastructure. A hybrid environment provides a more custom blend of cloud-based and on-premises solutions. While this sounds like the best of both worlds, there are certain concerns that are aggravated in the hybrid environment. Security is the most severe of the concerns it raises.
Double the Trouble in Hybrid Environment
Despite improved security solutions and technological advancements, both on-premises and cloud-based systems have their own set of vulnerabilities and weaknesses. When they are merged in a hybrid IT environment, they bring those vulnerabilities along. The worst part is that the merger can actually give rise to newer risks as well.
The issue mainly arises due to the expanding complexity of the Hybrid IT infrastructure. It is why there is a need for a more comprehensive cyber security program that involves strategies for on-premises components and the cloud-based systems.
The need for utilizing hybrid infrastructure has pushed organizations towards using more than one cloud provider. While most IT experts working for these organizations are aware of the challenges created by such complex IT infrastructures, they are not fully aware of the proper security strategies to implement.
Hybrid IT Security Considerations
There are certain regulatory compliance laws that must be considered. These laws vary from industry to industry. Organizations dealing with financial data such as credit card providers or organizations handling personal data such as medical insurance companies are subject to stricter data compliance laws. Such organizations need to ensure better security and meet the most stringent standards in this regard. You can discuss your needs with the cloud service provider and make sure they are able to comply.
For organizations using more than one cloud service provider, transferring policies across all the clouds is a headache. Your infrastructure should have a uniform security policy maintained across the entire infrastructure. These policies may include IPS signatures, user authentication, and firewall rules. The worst part is, there is no easy way to transfer policies across all the systems. It is a task best done manually with the help of IT experts.
Encrypt the Data to Improve Hybrid IT Security
Encryption is essentially the most effective answer to most security issues. Encryption becomes even more essential in a hybrid and multi-cloud environment. You should consider protecting the data as it travels between different cloud demarcation points. The data must also be encrypted while it is being processed or manipulated. However, encryption is needed throughout the data’s life cycle. You need to work with your cyber security expert to figure out the optimal encryption strategy to use, especially for the data in use.
Your IT Security Should be Scalable
No Hybrid IT Infrastructure Security guide can be complete without discussing the matter of scalability. While scalability is one of the key reasons hybrid infrastructures are preferred by most organizations, the scalability aspect of infrastructure security is often overlooked. One of the biggest risks hovering over your systems is the possibility of a major security loophole arising as your system grows. All of your security practices, procedures, and tools must be able to scale for growth.
The bottom line is that we need hybrid IT security solutions that are unified and scalable. The need for unification will only increase as the choice of tools and resources becomes more diverse. A custom security strategy must be created and implemented with the help of IT professionals who are able to analyze your current infrastructure and also predict its prospective growth.
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