Companies across the globe have benefited greatly from cloud computing, from the development of services, applications and platforms, to giving companies a multitude of options when it comes to finding the perfect solution to drive business benefit. However, cloud computing can bring new risks that need to be managed. Unauthorised system access, mass data loss and complexity of network identity management are just a few of the risks that can come with this new approach and must be mitigated against. Visibility is essential for businesses to make informed decisions. Once risks and threats have been identified, companies can mitigate against these threats – and this is where having centralised connectivity is essential. Centralised connectivity helps provide businesses with a much clearer and wider visibility, and the facts needed to make more informed cyber security decisions.
Company infrastructures have grown exponentially with the use of internet based services, taking greater advantage of cloud benefits for the organisation. There are a lot of benefits to expanding the network perimeters of an organisation, bringing in better flexibility and increased efficiency both for internal processes and external clients. However, this also increases the security risks across the business.
As the infrastructure grows, so do the entry points which can give hackers access. Instead of a data centre with one door for hackers to open and close, cloud and multicloud services create a large number of doors across a company’s network, creating vulnerabilities. Typical touchpoints now include internet-based communications, private cloud communications and B2B communications. In addition to this, each door now holds different security policies that businesses must know of and adhere to, in order to reduce risk across the board.
Shadow IT is based on good intentions, allowing staff to keep innovating by quickly gaining access to tools that make them more productive, especially in the wake of entire workforces being told to work from home.
With operations having shifted, more employees are evading the IT department than ever before, with cloud services becoming increasingly available and consumed at the click of a button. IT teams are potentially less aware of what has been adopted by employees working remotely, and therefore what may have been exposed in the process, increasing security risks.
Many businesses are deploying Security Information and Event Management (SIEM) solutions to protect networks from external and internal threats. Complex analysis is carried out on the network’s data to identify any security issues. The aim is to provide companies with a single view of all their data to help identify any patterns that are out of the ordinary.
However, the analysis will only bring complete results if the data is available. SIEMs won’t be able to understand previous events and patterns in order to make comparisons if there’s missing data and incomplete logs. This can result in businesses being left in the dark.
Having visibility is vital for any business, as a company and its network grows. Demand for transparency will increase, so businesses can avoid failure and security threats. High availability of services is what every business is looking to achieve, but this will be an increasingly challenging task with no real visibility of the network.
Risk based decisions made without central visibility, incomplete or legacy data could have a negative impact on the company in terms of operations, customer service and ultimately, growth.
A single, timely and accurate source of truth can be established with centralised connectivity. Securely bringing all the individual entities together on an estate or ecosystem will give companies the ability to become truly agile by swiftly responding to macro influences, adding, changing and removing connectivity providers, cloud vendors and other third parties. The most important change is the increasing visibility which drastically reduces security risks.
Creating visibility through a centralised network ensures that all exit points are monitored and creates singular egress points through one centralised platform. Shadow IT is reduced, IT teams are completely aware of all activity across the network and which cloud services are in use. Together with consistent policy and logs, SIEM solutions can now be used effectively to make sure that only true security risks are flagged up for investigation and action.
It all comes down to greater visibility. Cloud adoption is growing at a rapid rate, as the opportunity for businesses to take advantage of its offerings expands. However, it’s crucial that organisations make informed decisions and don’t allow themselves to be exposed to any security risks.
Centralised connectivity provides companies with greater visibility, as well the information they need to enable a better, more informed decision making process to protect their business.