The Role of Shared Responsibility Model in Ensuring Data Security in Cloud Computing

The only way to mitigate risks is to go for cloud security to ensure you protect your work from data breaches
The Role of Shared Responsibility Model in Ensuring Data Security in Cloud Computing
Image credit: Shutterstock

Grow Your Business, Not Your Inbox

Stay informed and join our daily newsletter now!
Co-Founder and CEO of Blazeclan Technologies
6 min read
Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

You're reading Entrepreneur India, an international franchise of Entrepreneur Media.

The trend of cloud computing shows no signs of abating, with service providers such as Amazon facilitating users to develop applications on the cloud, along with remote access and real-time monitoring. Several initiatives have been introduced that fuel acceleration of the digital change for India, bringing industries together to boost the adoption of the cloud. The implementation of sophisticated technologies is fast driving India toward cloud transformation, and emphasis on data security and protection continues to grow in direct proportion. While it’s imperative for organizations to ensure digital safety, the lines of accountability and responsibility for cloud security are becoming blur between cloud providing vendors and enterprises themselves. It is therefore imperative for stakeholders in the area to see the inner workings of cybersecurity first hand.

Living in an era of cloud computing, where the emergence of cloud computing has heavily influenced consumers and businesses, cloud security and data breaches have been an issue of enormous importance. When implementing cloud projects, security stands to be one of the most important issues. It requires companies to identify and understand the risks inherent to digitization, public networks and outsourcing of infrastructure components and yet strive in constant fear and insecurity of how secure their cloud deployments are.

Here’s what the Cloud Does 

The adoption of cloud computing grows to engulf more applications, processes, and data, creating opportunities for companies to outsource their security needs to providers. Several enterprises are taking control of security, instead of turning the responsibility over to providers. The security of your cloud infrastructure depends on your shoulders and not the service provider alone. This is where the shared responsibility model comes into the picture, not being a new concept to be factual. Proactive companies are resisting their urge to put security in the hands of cloud providers. However, businesses are emphasizing their cybersecurity budgets, with over 50per cent of companies focusing on investment into cloud security. More and more organizations are spending more on data security and protection, devoting extensive resources for enhancing their defenses and embedding security-by-design. 

Businesses must take responsibility for ensuring that their data is secure. However, with a cloud vendor, it becomes a shared responsibility. Enterprises distribute cloud-based applications among varying environments, which dictate the level of responsibility organizations possess in data protection. Cloud providers follow the shared responsibility model with businesses closing the loop on security and compliance. This model allows the cloud provider to take responsibility for the security of the cloud environment while the organization takes responsibility for security in the cloud. This matrix of responsibility eliminates single points of failure and achieves higher security. Sharing the responsibility of cloud security reduces the day-to-day operational responsibility for the enterprise and ensures holistic compliance.

Security Matters 

Identicality is what the nature of the shared responsibility model is across the service provider landscape. This bifurcates into security in the hands of cloud service providers and the organization. The scope is almost brimmed up for the former, including the physical security of the data centers and infrastructure inside. Major responsibility comes on the shoulders of organizations.

When using cloud services, one should implement all the same security measures they would apply to classic IT infrastructures. Since IT resources are also used in cloud systems, the previously described security objectives should be addressed with regard to people, information, applications and infrastructure.

It is equally crucial to determine who controls the various components of the cloud infrastructure. This defines where and how security measures should be applied, with a special focus on the data. At the end of the day, both providers and users need to keep cloud data safe. Cloud security must be a team effort.

There is significant scope for organizations in the shared responsibility model and this entails the criticality to evaluate internal capabilities. The imperativeness quotient of the shared responsibility model is that enables driving both - your migration strategy and your contemporary security plan. Several organizations that embraced cloud migration have been unaware of the concept of responsibility for shared cloud security. 

As businesses become agile, they start using cloud computing even more for at least one application and related data, thus, cybercrime equally continues to rise, and organizations cannot risk storing vital data on unsecured servers as the penalties from a data breach can be exorbitant. The only way to mitigate such risks is a substantial investment in cloud security to ensure you protect enterprise data from data breaches. Additionally, it is crucial to recognize that there is a digital symbiotic relationship between cloud security and compliance. The structuring of regulations means that one cannot exist without the other. Whether state, federal or internal, businesses are obliged to remain regulatory compliant. Several enterprises are taking control of security, instead of turning the responsibility over to providers, with the emphasis on caution regarding breaches at the provider side. To ensure a secure cloud environment, organizations are educating their senior business stakeholders with the concept of shared cloud security to ebb the issues arising from the mistakes of internal stakeholders. The organizations are also focused on developing a cloud security team comprising a portfolio of diverse skill sets.

Popularity  Comes For a Reason

Businesses are earnestly buying into the value of cloud computing and the enthusiasm surrounding it is rightly deserved. Whether it be a public, private or hybrid architecture, organizations are gaining unparalleled agility for IT services and it’s allowing them to stay competitive in industries that are notoriously difficult to succeed in. Many businesses have forgotten that they still have the responsibility to protect data that’s stored off-site, where the problem isn’t about a lack of resources being devoted to cyber security, instead, the issue lies in the fact that many companies only try to achieve the bare minimum in their cloud migration strategies. Proactive companies are resisting their urge to put security in the hands of cloud providers. However, businesses are emphasizing their cybersecurity budgets, with over 50per cent of companies focusing on investment into cloud security. More and more organizations are spending more on data security and protection, devoting extensive resources for enhancing their defenses and embedding security-by-design. Leveraging the experience of cloud consultants can enable organizations to get the most out of the tools that are available to them. Running diagnostics on cloud storages that are critical to daily operations and must comply with various regulations will help a business fulfil their part of the shared responsibility model.

The discussions circling cloud security are not confined to technical aspects, but involve impacts on cloud consumers from organizations and administrative perspective. This is extremely important to CISO and IT leaders wanting to follow the best practice of enforcing the same security policies across the enterprise regardless of the compute environment.

Latest on Entrepreneur