Welcome!

Containers Expo Blog Authors: Liz McMillan, Pat Romanski, Yeshim Deniz, Elizabeth White, Zakia Bouachraoui

Related Topics: Containers Expo Blog, @CloudExpo

Containers Expo Blog: Article

It's Time to Stop Fearing Change and Learn About Cloud Computing

Cloud Computing is Scary - But the FUD Has to Stop

The Cloud Ave Blog

When headlines like “RMS hates cloud computing; says you should too”, “Cloud Computing a Trap” or “Cloud computing puts your health data at risk” show up on the Internet, it looks like the same old FUD (Fear Uncertainty and Doubt) that have been the inevitable response from the security community or from people who do not accommodate change well.

It is time to start embracing where business is going, and trying to make sure that they are doing it in the safest way possible.

It is one thing to create FUD, it is quite another to offer no solutions or pointers to the solutions for the problems we are seeing. To remain credible security professionals have to provide solutions to go along with what we are talking about.

The problem is also that we are not providing answers back to the security community that needs support and guidance. There are very few information security experts in cloud computing. It is hard to have your average IDS watcher, or network security engineer understand that cloud computing offers benefits and risks, just as much as virtualization, or even the iPhone.

What security professionals need to be doing rather than creating their own FUD is work out ways to make it safer. It is time to stop fearing change and learn about cloud computing technology and what it can and cannot do for the business. Work through a risk matrix, work through measures and counter measures, do all those good things that security engineers should be doing.

What I am seeing in the community, on blogs, and in private communications is the same earnest viewpoint of proposing a six million dollar security solution for a 15-minute wireless test by insisting that a Faraday cage had to be built around the two buildings we wanted to use in the test. That the Faraday cage would have invalidated the test because we never would have been able to go point-to-point wireless as the test protocol asked for.

While we might struggle with new technology, it is time for information security folks to step up to the plate and get smart on how the technology works, what the risks are, and how those risks can be reasonably addressed by good security solutions.

There are tricks to cloud computing that will remind you of a SAN, there are things that will annoy you like logging, there are things that will make you happy like automatically having an MD5 has on every object on the system if you use Amazon AWS or S3. Or using the power of the cloud to acquire and digest computer images for forensics. Let alone the power that the cloud represents in actually meeting C2 logging levels for databases, or the raw log crunching power of the system. Or the ability to test patching routines for systems by building instances against images and regression testing there instead of on a thrown together test bed. There is a lot of love when it comes to cloud computing.


There are things to worry about, privacy, control of objects, legal discovery, who has access to what questions that arise anyways in a corporate environment, e-mail security, database security, what about the provider going out of business, or a host of other legitimate concerns about the security, privacy, access, and availability of the data or the objects.

There is also very little usable information from the security viewpoint on these issues, some of this is addressable, some of it will mean that information security professionals learn as they go using the best practices. They will also have to fall back on what they know, what they are legally responsible for, and what the real issues are to help management make the best decision that they can. They will not make a decision that security folks will like, because many data points are going to move off the local networks, and go to reside somewhere else in the world.

There are some great resources for good information, Cloud Ave is one of them, but Trend Micro, IBM, Google, Amazon, Microsoft, Oracle and others who have all figured out that this can be a very neat technology and help companies expand and contract according to business need and market conditions.

While it is not ‘inevitable’, it is probable that companies are going to move some operations off the local network and into the cloud. The best bet right now for the security engineer is to work through the process, and get smart now so that management can benefit from what you have learned.


[This post appeared originally here and is republished in full by kind permission of the editor-in-chief of CloudAve.com.]

Creative Commons License Attribution to http://www.cloudave.com

More Stories By Dan Morrill

Dan Morrill has been blogging since 2003, writing about technology like Nutch, Hadoop, management, and the ways that people, politics, and technology intersect. He's a globally syndicated blogger across 27 major internet news sites. His focus is on information security in all its forms, needs, and educational requirements.

Comments (0)

Share your thoughts on this story.

Add your comment
You must be signed in to add a comment. Sign-in | Register

In accordance with our Comment Policy, we encourage comments that are on topic, relevant and to-the-point. We will remove comments that include profanity, personal attacks, racial slurs, threats of violence, or other inappropriate material that violates our Terms and Conditions, and will block users who make repeated violations. We ask all readers to expect diversity of opinion and to treat one another with dignity and respect.


IoT & Smart Cities Stories
The deluge of IoT sensor data collected from connected devices and the powerful AI required to make that data actionable are giving rise to a hybrid ecosystem in which cloud, on-prem and edge processes become interweaved. Attendees will learn how emerging composable infrastructure solutions deliver the adaptive architecture needed to manage this new data reality. Machine learning algorithms can better anticipate data storms and automate resources to support surges, including fully scalable GPU-c...
Machine learning has taken residence at our cities' cores and now we can finally have "smart cities." Cities are a collection of buildings made to provide the structure and safety necessary for people to function, create and survive. Buildings are a pool of ever-changing performance data from large automated systems such as heating and cooling to the people that live and work within them. Through machine learning, buildings can optimize performance, reduce costs, and improve occupant comfort by ...
The explosion of new web/cloud/IoT-based applications and the data they generate are transforming our world right before our eyes. In this rush to adopt these new technologies, organizations are often ignoring fundamental questions concerning who owns the data and failing to ask for permission to conduct invasive surveillance of their customers. Organizations that are not transparent about how their systems gather data telemetry without offering shared data ownership risk product rejection, regu...
René Bostic is the Technical VP of the IBM Cloud Unit in North America. Enjoying her career with IBM during the modern millennial technological era, she is an expert in cloud computing, DevOps and emerging cloud technologies such as Blockchain. Her strengths and core competencies include a proven record of accomplishments in consensus building at all levels to assess, plan, and implement enterprise and cloud computing solutions. René is a member of the Society of Women Engineers (SWE) and a m...
Poor data quality and analytics drive down business value. In fact, Gartner estimated that the average financial impact of poor data quality on organizations is $9.7 million per year. But bad data is much more than a cost center. By eroding trust in information, analytics and the business decisions based on these, it is a serious impediment to digital transformation.
Digital Transformation: Preparing Cloud & IoT Security for the Age of Artificial Intelligence. As automation and artificial intelligence (AI) power solution development and delivery, many businesses need to build backend cloud capabilities. Well-poised organizations, marketing smart devices with AI and BlockChain capabilities prepare to refine compliance and regulatory capabilities in 2018. Volumes of health, financial, technical and privacy data, along with tightening compliance requirements by...
Predicting the future has never been more challenging - not because of the lack of data but because of the flood of ungoverned and risk laden information. Microsoft states that 2.5 exabytes of data are created every day. Expectations and reliance on data are being pushed to the limits, as demands around hybrid options continue to grow.
Digital Transformation and Disruption, Amazon Style - What You Can Learn. Chris Kocher is a co-founder of Grey Heron, a management and strategic marketing consulting firm. He has 25+ years in both strategic and hands-on operating experience helping executives and investors build revenues and shareholder value. He has consulted with over 130 companies on innovating with new business models, product strategies and monetization. Chris has held management positions at HP and Symantec in addition to ...
Enterprises have taken advantage of IoT to achieve important revenue and cost advantages. What is less apparent is how incumbent enterprises operating at scale have, following success with IoT, built analytic, operations management and software development capabilities - ranging from autonomous vehicles to manageable robotics installations. They have embraced these capabilities as if they were Silicon Valley startups.
As IoT continues to increase momentum, so does the associated risk. Secure Device Lifecycle Management (DLM) is ranked as one of the most important technology areas of IoT. Driving this trend is the realization that secure support for IoT devices provides companies the ability to deliver high-quality, reliable, secure offerings faster, create new revenue streams, and reduce support costs, all while building a competitive advantage in their markets. In this session, we will use customer use cases...