Security "Bits"

Can cloud apps be as secure as premises-based apps?

By Salim Hafid | June 8, 2016 at 6:00 AM

cloud apps as secure as premises based apps

Perception is finally catching up to the reality that cloud apps are as secure as premises-based apps. Our latest survey revealed that a majority of IT professionals (52 percent) believe cloud apps can be as secure - a notable change from previous years. So what's driving the change?

Major cloud vendors like Microsoft and Salesforce understand the reticence on the part of some IT leaders  to adopt cloud apps - they want to enable productivity and mobility without sacrificing security. To change perception of the cloud, these vendors have mounted extensive campaigns to educate and explain that cloud apps are supported by large teams, dedicated to protecting cloud infrastructure, reacting to potential breaches, and minimizing downtime.

Such campaigns have driven awareness of cloud apps and their advantages, but are only part of the shift in perception. Employees today are accessing corporate data in ways that could easily result in a leak once outside the network, making traditional security tools ineffective. Notably, 59 percent of survey respondents say traditional security tools like firewalls from Symantec and Palo Alto Networks are ineffective when it comes to securing the cloud. This is concerning for organizations that want to migrate to the cloud without sacrificing security.  

Fortunately, in the last few years years, CASBs and other purpose-built cloud security tools have quickly matured and are now incredibly robust, capable of inline cloud DLP, cross-app audit and visibility, and more. Such tools enable cloud adoption and have inspired confidence among IT leaders that access to sensitive corporate data will remain protected beyond the corporate network. 

The shift in perception of cloud security is made more apparent by the rapid rise in cloud adoption, and it's no surprise. IT pros are eager to shift the burden for infrastructure and app security to the cloud vendor and have quickly taken to using CASBs for access controls and data protection - a trend likely to continue as more become aware of the reality of cloud security. 


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