business solutions whenever required – these are the factors that are driving businesses to switch to cloud computing. Every year, there’s a new cloud application being launched. These tools (for example, Office 365 and Drop-Box) enable businesses to transport their data into flexible resources easily and drastically lower their operational expenses.
More importantly, cloud adoption enables businesses to manage their data efficiently. However, it’s not all smooth sailing for businesses attempting to make this switch. Cloud security is a major concern for businesses adopting cloud technology. How can businesses secure their confidential data stored in the cloud? What if an unauthorized cloud-based Software as a service (SaaS) tool gains unauthorized access to a company’s confidential data?
Cloud Access Security Brokers (CASBs) offer the best security solutions.
What the Experts are Saying
CASB systems are combinations of various types of security tools –
- They act as filters between users and Cloud systems, encrypting all web traffic sent to Cloud providers.
- CASBs can act as firewalls preventing non-authorized users from accessing the Cloud systems.
- They can also serve as proxy servers shielding Cloud systems from potentially threatful SaaS cloud applications.
Most importantly, CASBs can address specific issues businesses have with their Cloud providers. For example, if a company uses Salesforce, they can easily CASB solutions that support Salesforce’s application programming interfaces.
Gartner, the world’s leading IT research firm, recently published their “Magic Quadrant for Cloud Access Security Brokers,” where they mentioned the importance of companies using CASBs to maintain total data confidentiality within SaaS applications. Here’s how CASBs help companies secure their cloud systems.
CASB solutions essentially help business administrators take a peek into all the traffic between their companies and their Cloud providers. By using CASB solutions, administrators can view which sanctioned/unsanctioned cloud systems their users’ access. Using this data, business administrators can guide workers to sanctioned alternatives with the intention of gaining better control over the company’s critical data.
CASB solutions also provide business administrators with total visibility into their “Shadow IT operations.” Shadow IT is the unauthorized use of information on IT and cloud systems. The unprecedently fast rate of adopting cloud-based applications and services has increased these risks for businesses. CASBs can help companies avert these risks by –
- Automatically identifying potentially risky cloud applications.
- Prevent unsanctioned applications from accessing confidential data.
- Rate different apps based on the threats they pose.
- Identify the employees on the cloud who have the most vulnerable security systems.
The apps that CASBs deem risky for the organization are categorized as “unsanctioned,” and their use is automatically restricted. In a recent survey involving IT experts from Intel, 65% of respondents said shadow IT is interfering with their ability to keep cloud systems secure. Thankfully, integrating CASB systems into your organization’s cloud system can easily resolve these security threats.
The CASB Gartner recommends can automatically detect sensitive data, encrypt/ tokenize it, and establish a controlled access system. Although CASB solutions aren’t full-fledged data security systems (they don’t actually inspect the data), they can inspect all ‘in-flight’ data that traverses through the CASB software. Any sensitive data in transit will be immediately intercepted by the CASB software. The system can also prevent cloud members from accessing potentially harmful websites. IT security teams can benefit a lot from using CASB solutions.
- They can instantly determine the risk posed by unapproved cloud solutions or apps.
- Add APIs to approved cloud applications to improve their security. For instance, APIs that prevent data loss (DLPs) or adaptive access control (AAC) APIs.
- Track how approved cloud services are being used and adopted across the cloud network.
- Give managed/unmanaged devices restricted access to cloud services.
- Understand whether they’re facing any compliance-related risks
- Detect threats. CASB features UEBA capabilities (User Entity Behavior Analytical). They can instantly detect whether any account on the network has been compromised.
Most importantly, CASBs constantly scan all network data passing through them to detect all potential threats or efforts to extract data from a company’s Cloud network illegitimately. This constant security support that CASBs provide is invaluable to organizations who are new to Cloud technology.
Getting CASB Solutions – Why and How?
Any organization that uses Cloud technology and SaaS tools must consider integrating CASB solutions to their company’s cybersecurity strategies. A top-quality CASB solution will enable business administrators to add customized security controls to their networks and shield their data as it traverses between the company’s network and their cloud-based service providers. CASB solutions offer cost-effective ways for companies to add value to their existing cybersecurity systems.
From data loss prevention to detailed insights into user and entity behaviors on the Cloud network, these tools can make any company’s cybersecurity system ten times stronger. That’s why research firms like Gartner are so bullish on providers of CASB solutions!