The cloud has become a critical part of modern businesses. It offers greater flexibility, scalability and cost savings than on-prem solutions. As the use of cloud services continues to grow, so do concerns over cloud security.
If your company relies on data and applications entirely or even partially stored in the cloud, understanding appropriate security controls is critical to trust and confidence of the cloud environment. Balancing performance and cost can be a challenge as there is often a trade-off; tightening your cyber security controls can come at the cost of efficiency and functionality of your cloud infrastructure. At times, it can also become a costly endeavour to invest in the right solutions.
In this blog, I’ll cover key tips for optimising cloud security while balancing cloud performance and cost.
Understanding the cloud provider’s security controls
Cloud providers invest considerable time and resources into securing their platforms; this actually reduces operational costs and liabilities but does need to be understood. When leveraging the cloud, organisations should use the security tools provided by your cloud provider to enhance your security posture and protect your cloud environment from potential threats.
But where to begin? It is imperative to start by assessing the security features that your cloud provider offers and evaluating pertinent questions about their coverage. This will help you determine whether their security tools align with your organisation’s security requirements, and identify what you’re missing.
Prioritise the security controls you need most
You must identify which controls are essential to protect your critical assets and prioritise them accordingly. Take a step back, assess the data and applications you have stored in the cloud, and determine which ones are mission-critical for your organisation. These could be customer data, financial records, or intellectual property — anything that would cause significant damage to your business if compromised.
Once you have identified your critical assets, you can prioritise the most crucial security controls to protect them. For example, if you store sensitive customer data in the cloud, you may prioritise data encryption and access control. This means you will allocate more resources to these controls and ensure they are always up-to-date and functioning correctly.
Automated tools can perform routine security tasks like patch management, security updates, and policy enforcement. So you no longer have to worry about missing an update or applying a patch. Instead, your security measures will always be up-to-date and fully operational.
Moreover, automation allows you to monitor your cloud environment for potential security threats like malware, intrusion attempts, and unauthorised access. With automated monitoring, you can quickly detect security incidents and respond to them in real time, reducing the potential impact of the threat and minimising damage to your business.
Educate employees on security best practices
Employee education and awareness are critical to maintaining cloud security. Many security breaches occur due to human error, such as employees falling prey to phishing attacks or using weak passwords.
Your business should regularly train employees on security best practices, such as password hygiene, identifying phishing emails and reporting suspicious behaviour. This can help your team become more aware of security threats and take steps to mitigate them. For example, educating staff on additional security measures, such as multi-factor authentication (MFA), can improve cloud security without impacting cost and performance.
Regularly assess your cloud security controls
Regular cloud security assessments allow you to optimise your cloud infrastructure and identify areas where you can reduce costs without compromising cloud performance. For example, a security assessment might reveal that certain cloud resources are underutilised, allowing your business to reallocate resources and reduce costs. It can also help you identify potential security risks and take steps to mitigate them, which can prevent costly security incidents from occurring.
Furthermore, regular assessments enable you to prioritise security controls and ensure that the security measures you initially invested in are the right ones to protect your critical assets at the current time. By identifying your most important assets and prioritising security controls accordingly, you can optimise security measures and manage costs more effectively.
Engage with a managed security services provider
Managed security services provide businesses with access to a team of experienced security professionals and advanced tools and services to enhance cloud security. These providers offer comprehensive security monitoring, threat detection and response, security incident management, and compliance management services. With their help, your business can proactively identify and mitigate security risks before they cause significant damage to your operations.
Furthermore, managed security services can be more cost-effective than hiring in-house security resources. Rather than investing in dedicated (and often costly) security personnel, you can leverage the expertise of a managed security services provider to enhance your security posture, maintain cloud performance, and manage costs more effectively.
Cloud computing has transformed business operations, providing greater flexibility, scalability and cost savings. As such, deploying solutions for managing cloud security is essential, but these should not compromise performance and cost.
Your business can balance cloud performance and cost by leveraging the controls from your cloud provider, prioritising security controls, leveraging automation tools, educating employees on security best practices, performing regular security assessments, and using managed security services.
Mercury can optimise cloud security for your business
Ready to take your cloud security to the next level? Contact us for expert advice and solutions tailored to your business needs. Whether you want to optimise cloud security, automate processes, or perform regular assessments, our experienced consultants can help.
When engaging with us, you can be sure that your organisation is in good hands. We offer the necessary expertise and support to help you secure your cloud environment and stay ahead of the latest security threats and trends. Contact us today to learn more about our services and how we can help you achieve the right balance in cloud security.