Lora O'Haver
Senior Solutions Marketing Manager
Blog

Top New Cloud Security Solutions Need Better Data

September 21, 2017 by Lora O'Haver

As someone who works with cloud technologies, my inbox constantly presents me with promotions for solutions and services that increase security in the cloud. It's a hot market. And no wonder. Cloud usage is at an all-time high and cloud spending has grown at 4.5 times the rate of overall IT spending since 2009 and is expected to grow at better than 6 times IT spending through 2020.[1]

But just because cloud adoption is widespread and no longer considered experimental, doesn't mean there aren't risks that need to be mitigated. It's like medical treatments that we know work, but come with serious side effects that need to be managed so the cure doesn't become worse than the disease.

Now that we've successfully separated hardware from the function it provides, we can more easily and cost-efficiently deploy new services. We can scale capacity up and down to match changing demand and pay only for what we use. We aren't sorry to see the old hardware-dominated world slip away. But it does present us with a new challenge for monitoring data traffic passing through our organizations. Before virtualization, you could plug in a physical device to intercept traffic moving through a physical switch. Virtual switches and virtual machines present a different challenge.

It's probably a cliché to say security solutions are only as good as the data they receive, but as cloud environments become dominant, it's important to have a data access strategy that recognizes the different way traffic moves in our clouds. The side effects of not changing our data monitoring techniques can leave us open to security threats and attacks that impact revenue, cause compliance issues, or damage customer trust.

To make your sophisticated cloud security tools as effective and efficient as possible, make sure you have the right visibility platform in place.

  • Eliminate dark corners where data goes unexamined: Identify the blind spots and find ways to tap virtual traffic wherever it is generated. This means using a visibility platform that supports all of the cloud platforms you operate or might deploy.
  • Make scalability non-negotiable: You need to know that your visibility solution can keep up with your clouds. CloudLens is a cloud-native solution that automatically scales with each new virtual machine or cloud instance to ensure no data is missed.
  • Integrate data from hybrid environments: Prior to monitoring, use your visibility solution to aggregate related traffic generated in multiple clouds.
  • Streamline data sent to monitoring systems: A high-performance visibility platform like Ixia CloudLens can perform non-core data manipulation more inexpensively than your monitoring systems. Let your visibility system de-duplicate, strip headers and protocols, and mask sensitive data so your monitoring systems don't have to.
  • Leverage existing data center solutions where it makes sense: You may have critical monitoring solutions that are not yet available as cloud services. In this case you may need to transfer or backhaul cloud data to existing on-premises solutions in your data center. The CloudLens visibility platform makes it easy to send data wherever your monitoring systems are: in the cloud or in the data center.

The visibility platform you choose can substantially increase the effectiveness and performance of your monitoring systems. Choose a platform with maximum flexibility that gives your powerful new cloud tools all the data they need to keep your defenses strong.

Cloud visibility options
 

[1] IDC, “The Salesforce Economy: Enabling 1.9 Million New Jobs and $389 Billion in New Revenue Over Next Five Years,” September 2016, available from Salesforce, accessed September 21, 2017.