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Locking Down the Cloud Blog Series

Locking Down the Cloud: Dealing with Complexity

I love this illustration from a recent Netskope Cloud Report.

The IT guy, standing in his dinghy, is estimating that he has 40-50 cloud apps running in his enterprise.
But check out that submerged iceberg: it’s more like 397! That’s nearly 10x the IT estimate.
You’ll notice that Netskope also points out that 77 percent of those apps are not enterprise ready. We’re talking consumer cloud apps like Dropbox, Evernote, Twitter, and so on. We’re talking all those “stealth IT” and “shadow IT” sites that employees set up on their own -- to prototype an idea, or get a specific task done, fast.... Mehr

Locking Down the Cloud: Freeing the Cloud

When I started talking to cloud experts about automation and security, I thought that we’d spend most of our time discussing how automation reduces human error (and deliberate malfeasance). And how it frees up IT time for higher value activities.
It does both of those things, of course. But I also discovered a sub-theme that kept bubbling up in my conversations: by automating security, you give a power boost to one of the most appealing features of cloud hosting: rapid elasticity and scalability.
Let’s say that you need to scale up your digital capacity to handle a surge of interest and... Mehr

Locking Down the Cloud: Taking Advantage of Automation

I was nursing a strong cup of coffee when I spoke to Marc Boorshtein, the chief technology officer at Tremelo Security, an identity service broker that enables enterprises to integrate new applications very quickly.
The coffee was crucial, because Marc decided, as an example, to go through the manual process of deploying a new server. “First, install the OS; then install certain libraries; then install packages; then configure the packages; then lock down the server…”
“Stop!” I pleaded. “I get it!”
Marc was happy to oblige, because I just made his points for him: Rote activities are... Mehr

Locking Down the Cloud: Leveraging the Ecosystem

Ryan Scheuermann recently came up with a good metaphor to describe the difference between managing security on your own servers, and using a cloud-based service.
“When you’re working with bare metal in your own location, it’s all up to you. It’s like the wild west,” he said.
“When you’re hosted in the cloud,” he continued, “it’s like being in a gated community: the cloud service providers have many services that you can take advantage of.”
“It’s still up to you,” said Ryan, who is the chief product officer and co-founder of Ceros, a cloud-based marketing platform that is used by global... Mehr

Locking Down the Cloud

Over the last few years, IT departments have gotten increasingly comfortable with cloud technology, by which I mean cloud security. Because as one IT analyst put it recently, “When it comes to the cloud, security is the number one concern. And number two isn’t even close.”
But 2014 could be the year when thought and analysis take a back seat to action. Companies that haven’t already embraced cloud technology are ready to make the move. One reason: the rise of automation, which is making it easier -- nearly irresistible, in fact -- for IT departments to start transitioning significant parts... Mehr