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ITechnology Primer: Hybrid Cloud Security- Definition, Scope and Trends

ITechnology Primer: Hybrid Cloud Security- Definition, Scope and Trends

Hybrid Cloud security is a relatively new concept in the Cloud technology landscape.

Did you know? 70% of organizations hosting data or workloads in the public cloud experienced a security incident in the last year with multi-cloud organizations reporting up to twice as many incidents’ versus single platform adopters!

Companies are adopting hybrid cloud infrastructure to meet the growing demand for enhanced cloud storage and modernized IT solutions. The recent developments in the enterprise Cloud landscape clearly show that Hybrid Cloud model is the go-to solution for most IT companies. Why? Hybrid Cloud maximizes the benefits of your existing IT infrastructure with efficient resource allocation and cost optimization, providing flexibility to your workload portability and so on, across multiple IT environments, Public or Private.

In this ITechnology Primer on Hybrid Cloud Security, we will focus on the most contemporary definition, scope and trends related to compliance, audit, policy, and security requirements for Cloud infrastructure.

Hybrid Cloud Security: Top Definitions from the Industry Leaders

Let us first define what cloud security is.

Cloud security is a set of scientific and managerial processes and policies used to plan, analyze, control and comply with Cyber / IT security measures in order to reduce or completely eliminate the risks arising from Cloud computing, usage and servicing. In a majority of the IT companies, InfoSec teams rely on Security as-a-service providers to make arrangements for cloud security, often delivered as part of a customized IT portfolio.

Cloud security could be provider to users of:

  1. Public Cloud
  2. Private Cloud
  3. Hybrid Cloud

In this ITechnology primer, we will focus only on Hybrid Cloud Security.

Here are the top industry-focused definitions from the leaders in the Hybrid Cloud Security industry.

Red Hat is one of the world’s leading enterprise open source platform for public and private Clouds, Cloud-native applications and Cloud-managed services.

According to Red Hat, “hybrid cloud security is the protection of the data, applications, and infrastructure associated with an IT architecture that incorporates some degree of workload portability, orchestration, and management across multiple IT environments, including at least 1 cloud—public or private.”

Most IT companies are looking at Hybrid Cloud Security solutions to align their performance management systems with industry-specific needs and emerging trends in the hyper-connected ecosystem of the IoT, 5G, Edge, and Virtualization.

VMware is a leading cloud computing and virtualization technology company.

According to VMware, “Hybrid Cloud Security consists of various software-defined networking (SDN), virtualization, and application support at all layers of the service mesh across multiple data centers and hardware devices.”

Hybrid Cloud security can also be defined by virtue of its application in the Cloud environment.

According to Kaspersky, a Hybrid Cloud Security solution provides multi-layered protection to store critical business data across “multi-cloud environments.” It could include a ‘perfectly balanced combination of agile, continuous security and superior efficiency, protecting your data against the most advanced current and future threats without compromising on systems performance.’

NetApp provides a very contextual definition by virtue of the Hybrid Cloud structure.

A Hybrid Cloud strategy includes these:

  • on-premises data center,
  • private and public cloud resources, and
  • workloads

All these could be tied together with a common data management for simplified IT management.

Most Hybrid Cloud Security models are deployed over the Data Fabric, providing a common set of policies and procedures to mitigate any kind of security risks across “any combination of IT resources.”

So, we can arrive at the most contemporary definition of Hybrid Cloud Security, which can be stated as:

“A hybrid cloud security is a highly useful cybersecurity process involving physical, technical, and administrative components within an existing or planned cloud computing environment for on-premises, private cloud and third-party IT services enabling a transparent and simplified orchestration of systems processes and resources through a connection between an on-premises data center and a public cloud, further aligning with the involvement of other IT resources such as IoT, 5G and Edge components.”

Scope of Hybrid Cloud Security

Hybrid Cloud Security practices involve the use of traditional IT networking, administration and data center management software. With the explosive growth in remote workplace and administration, every company has a varied requirement from their respective Hybrid Cloud infrastructure. Due to the critical nature of hosting business data on a cloud, most IT professionals consider putting up with a Private Cloud with the on-premise data center. This leads us to define the scope of Hybrid Cloud Security.

By virtue of its application in modern IT systems, hybrid cloud security can be categorized into three components: physical, technical, and administrative. Each of these components deals with securing the critical assets in the Cloud and providing managers with advanced insights into security controls. The administrative component of hybrid cloud security, in particular, is very important, yet often ignored, aspect of the procedure. Security analysts recommend focusing on administrative controls could enable security ops teams to train and educate people on security assessment, predictive analysis and disaster planning.

In a recent interview, Pega’s CTO Don Schuerman said,

“With our own clients, we’re seeing a continued desire for increased agility, the ability to operate with an as-a-service approach, and the implementation of platforms that enable digital transformation. Yet many of these clients must manage these goals with the challenges that come with operating large, complex businesses, such as functioning around traditional ways of working and managing change while still relying on legacy platforms. At Pega, we’re focused on helping clients crush complexity by providing an extra layer of support to break through siloes and streamline experiences for employees on the back end for the ultimate benefit of customers on the front end.”

Therefore, a reliable Hybrid Cloud Security software should be able to deliver high-end security capabilities to support and simplify the IT modernization workflows while securing digital transformation goals with 100% visibility and transparency into the physical, technical and administrative security orchestration.

So, hybrid cloud security provides more opportunities to IT leaders in embracing a hybrid future over Edge environments, bringing together the best balance of IT agility, security, scalability, portability, innovation and sustenance.

Top Trends in Hybrid Cloud Landscape

Here are the top 10 trends from the Hybrid Cloud landscape.

  1. According to IDC’s Worldwide Whole Cloud Forecast, 2020–2024, the global spending on cloud computing services is projected to surpass USD 1 trillion in 2024. [Vertis]
  2. 95% of cloud security failures will be the customer’s fault. It is important to plan and create resilient and fully cloud-based environments by making extensive use of native cloud capabilities (PaaS, SaaS, IaaS) across the leading cloud providers such as Amazon Web Services, Microsoft Azure and Google Cloud Platform. It is also critical to address the data and third-party risks associated with utilizing the Cloud as part of the existing architecture development activities. [Deloitte]
  3. Best practices in hybrid cloud security implement a multi-tiered approach to protection based upon interwoven security information and event management (SIEM) products within the service mesh. [VMware]
  4. On-premises cloud remains critical to advance into the future with a hybrid cloud strategy. 85 percent of firms surveyed list on-premises as a critical part of their hybrid cloud strategy. [IBM, The Key to Enterprise Hybrid Cloud Strategy]
  5. In a survey, participants were asked ““What best describes your company’s cloud strategy?” 44.92% of respondents indicated that they have a multi-cloud strategy, with 25.39% currently using a single cloud, and 23.05% planning to migrate. 6.64 percent of the respondents have no cloud strategy in place currently. [CloudHealth by VMware]
  6. Poorly laid secure policies increase the risks of malware and ransomware attack on virtual as well as physical endpoints. Moreover, the failure to implement adequate cloud security measures for personal data protection may result in legal issues. [Kaspersky – Proven Protection and Borderless Orchestration for Your Hybrid Cloud]
  7. Despite the clear imperative to have a consistent view of hybrid cloud operations, many organizations silo the teams and budgets dedicated to maintaining and growing business-critical applications running traditional systems, and those focused on cloud-native stacks and operations. [Red Hat]
  8. Many IT teams are struggling with the complexities of managing across hybrid clouds using fragmented, siloed tools. Hybrid Cloud provides unified visibility across platforms, enabling teams to manage holistically instead of using disparate, cloud-specific tools. [Red Hat]
  9. A majority of enterprises benefit from lower annual operating expenses (average of 11%) as a result of hybrid cloud investments. A majority of hybrid cloud customers observe improvements in security and risk reduction (average of 13%), addressing the top challenge with “all-in” public cloud usage. [Dell EMC]
  10. 87 percent of enterprises have already adopted hybrid cloud strategies and an estimated growth rate of 17 percent has the hybrid cloud industry pegged to inflate from a valuation of $44.6 billion in 2018 to almost $100 billion by 2023. [Accenture]

[To share your insights on InfoSec and Cloud strategies, please write to us at sghosh@martechseries.com]

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