Hybrid cloud is an IT infrastructure that connects at least one public cloud and one private cloud, thus creating a single cloud environment that provides organizations with better portability and flexibility. Experts predict that by 2022, over 90% of businesses worldwide will be relying on a hybrid cloud environment to meet their infrastructure needs.
But as with any technology that involves data management, hybrid cloud has security risks. Every company implementing a hybrid cloud solution must overcome the following challenges to enjoy its full functionality without worry.
1. Visibility, control, and management
A hybrid cloud configuration tends to become more complex when infrastructure beyond physical machines and virtualization are integrated into it. This makes it difficult to view and control all the components in the entire infrastructure. And if you can’t see every piece that makes up your system, securing every potential risk point can be arduous.
To solve this problem, you must implement solutions that can provide centralized management, visibility, and monitoring across your heterogeneous infrastructure. You should also strive to automate what you can, from workflow processes to security measures. Automation not only minimizes the risk of human error; it also comes with history logs that provide deeper visibility into your systems.
Every organization that accesses, stores, or manages data in the cloud is subjected to several compliance standards such as the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), which enforces rules regarding data collection, use, and storage. And if your business is using a hybrid cloud, you’re compelled to follow these stringent rules because data traversing to and from less-secure public cloud networks has higher risks of getting compromised.
One great way to overcome compliance challenges is by partnering with a managed IT services provider (MSP) that specializes in cloud technology. Your MSP can help evaluate your cloud infrastructure for weaknesses and vulnerabilities, as well as implement solutions that meet regulatory security baselines for compliance and auditing requirements.
3. Data security
Hybrid cloud environments are increasingly complex and expansive, and data can be exposed to risks while it’s at rest or in transit. To protect data at rest, choose an operating system that can support either full-disk or partition encryption, such as the Linux Unified Key Setup-on-disk (LUKS) format. You should also encrypt your hardware by implementing solutions such as a Trusted Platform Module (TPM), which keeps your hard drives locked unless an authorized user logs in.
Data in motion is vulnerable to interception and alteration, so always encrypt your network sessions. For instance, you can implement Internet Protocol Security (IPsec), which encrypts the communication between two hosts that use Internet Protocol (IP). Apart from having a strong encryption policy, measures such as endpoint verification protocol, robust VPN, and multifactor authentication can also protect your data from security breach incidents.
4. Data redundancy
Data redundancy happens when you store the same piece of data in two or more separate locations. It’s critical to have a well-defined data redundancy policy to ensure reliable and up-to-date backups in case of security incidents, natural disasters, or other instances that limit data center capabilities.
However, data redundancy can be a problem when you don’t have a system that maintains and organizes copies of your data. Different versions of backup copies can pile up in various locations and in different formats, resulting in inconsistencies that can negatively impact operations.
To ensure the most reliable versions from the databases across multiple cloud environments, you can use commercial tools developed specifically for hybrid cloud backups. Note, however, that these tools may entail additional cost and management burdens, so it’s essential that you consult with your cloud provider and your IT team to decide on the best backup strategy for your organization.
It takes strategic planning and deep knowledge of cloud technology to implement a properly configured hybrid cloud environment that helps your business reach greater heights. Our experts at HERO Managed Services are happy to assist you in any inquiry you may have about the cloud — or any other IT solutions. Book a FREE IT consultation now.