3 Methods to Secure Your AWS Cloud Infrastructureby@nops
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3 Methods to Secure Your AWS Cloud Infrastructure

by nOpsDecember 1st, 2021
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The importance of implementing these security measures to protect your AWS cloud resources can't be overemphasized. 79% of surveyed firms have experienced a cloud data breach in the past 18 months. This article highlighted 3 proven tips that can help you maintain a strong AWS infrastructural security and compliance.

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The immense benefits the cloud offers over an on-premises system -coupled with the COVID-19 pandemic - has accelerated the rate of companies migrating their workloads to the cloud. However, despite the numerous advantages cloud platforms offer, cloud cyber attacks are on the rise.

According to an International Data Corporation (IDC) report, 79% of surveyed firms have experienced a cloud data breach in the past 18 months.

Amazon Web Services (AWS) operates a shared responsibility model to guarantee infrastructural security and compliance. To achieve this, it enforces security mechanisms that ensure the safety of the underlying infrastructure AWS services are built on. After that, it equips users with various security features that you can leverage to manage your cloud security and mitigate threat risks. The importance of implementing these security measures to protect your AWS cloud resources can't be overemphasized.

In this article, we've outlined three steps to running a secure AWS cloud infrastructure. Let's get started.

1. Follow Best Security Practices

The AWS Well-Architected Framework outlines best practices for configuring your cloud environment. Here are 5 of these recommended security practices:

  • Avoid using the root account - The root account has complete access to all your AWS services and resources. It is therefore not advised to use the root user account for everyday tasks. You should instead create an Identity and Access Management (IAM) user for such operations. 
  • Enable Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA) - Enabling multi-factor authentication can significantly reduce the risk of your account being compromised. You should enable MFA for your AWS account and other IAM users generated under your account. You can do this programmatically via AWS CLI or with a virtual MFA device via the IAM console.
  • Enable AWS CloudTrail - When implementing a proper Cloud Governance strategy, it is essential to know who did what, where, and when the action was taken. AWS CloudTrail provides you with detailed insights that satisfy these requirements. Its logs should be stored for audit and analyzed periodically.
  • Enable Encryption - AWS provides you with various server and client-side encryption options to encrypt your data. The AWS Key Management Service (KMS) can help you with your desired encryption choice.
  • Conduct Regular Vulnerability Assessments - Conducting a Well-Architected Framework Review will assess your infrastructural compliance with AWS security best practices and help highlight vulnerabilities. 

2. Get Complete Visibility

According to Forcepoint, only 7% of businesses have good visibility of all their critical data. Having many workloads without adequate visibility into your resources and configurations can throw your business into the dark. 

Using a cloud observability platform that provides granular insights into your cloud resources can empower you to take proactive decisions to prevent vulnerabilities from escalating into breaches.

3. Check Your Infrastructure Health Regularly

For humans, medical examinations analyze your health state, allowing you to take preventative measures if irregularities are identified. The same is true for your cloud infrastructure: regular and frequent scanning of your cloud environment's health allows you to quickly assess the security of your workloads, ensuring that your business operations function smoothly without being vulnerable to cyber threats.

This is easily accomplished with the help of an automated third-party platform. Doing this will save time, money and, most importantly, prevent security misconfigurations from escalating to full-blown security breaches.

Conclusion: How to Secure Your AWS Cloud Architecture

Conclusively, managing a secure AWS cloud architecture entails having visibility into provisioned workloads and adhering to recommended practices. Following the previously discussed suggestions will help your business detect security misconfigurations and stay Well-Architected.

On the other hand, tracking and implementing all of these requirements might divert your Dev team's attention away from the innovative activities you hired them for. Getting an AWS management platform that offers continuous monitoring and control of cloud security risks and threats can be incredibly rewarding.