Cyber Security is and has always been a leading concern in the realm of cloud computing. Many business leaders continue to point to cloud security worries as the leading reason why they have either yet to embrace hosted solutions or have only done so to a limited degree. Certainly company decision-makers have become less nervous about hosting their sensitive data and operations in cloud environments over the course of the past few years, but until these fears dissipate completely, firms will not be able to take full advantage of cloud services’ potential.

Fortunately, secure cloud deployments are becoming increasingly achievable, thanks to advances in cloud-related tools and strategies. One of the key tactics which businesses can and should leverage in order to benefit from cloud solutions is to embrace automation. As Cloud Tech contributor Phil Christensen recently highlighted, advanced automation can significantly improve the security of a cloud environment by reducing the risk of oversights and missteps. However, for a company to enjoy these benefits, it must take pains to ensure automation is implemented effectively and carefully.

Automated advantages

According to the writer, automation “is the only long-term solution” for securing a company’s cloud resources. Without automation, companies are forced to rely on their engineers’ memories and manual labor in order to ensure the security of newly deployed environments. When this is the case, there is always a significant chance that personnel will overlook some sort of loophole, or simply make a mistake that creates a vulnerability.

Automation offers a number of additional benefits, as well. Christensen explained that with automated security policies, companies have the incentive to adopt and implement evolving security standards, rather than relying on increasingly outdated approaches. What’s more, automation is key for ensuring that security policies remain in place and enforced throughout the company’s IT infrastructure. Lacking automation, it’s very possible that laxness will emerge over time, undermining the security of the company’s various cloud environments.

Automation can also simply make cloud security professionals’ lives easier. The writer noted that automated strategies can enable IT staff to create code templates which can subsequently be deployed in numerous future instances. This saves a lot of time without compromising cloud security in any way. Similarly, automation encourages standardized naming conventions. According to Christensen, “Inconsistent or sloppy naming is a bigger security risk than most people think.” This is due to the fact that missteps in this area can lead to serious oversights, such as mixing up one security group and another.

Security matters

The impact of these forms of cloud automation is particularly pronounced in light of the fact that security fears refuse to abate entirely. For example, a recent survey from IDG Research found that among a sampling of enterprise IT leaders, only 16 percent were completely confident in their ability to protect customer data stored in their companies’ cloud environments. A full 50 percent said they were “very concerned” with their security capabilities in this regard.

As companies come to appreciate the cloud security value that automation has to offer, though, it becomes much more possible for organizations to embrace hosted solutions with confidence. As this happens, firms will have the opportunity to maximize the benefits they see from cloud investments.

To reach this point, though, it’s imperative for enterprises to develop the right approach to automation. This can often best be achieved by partnering with a cloud managed services provider which has robust experience in the field of cloud automation – such as Naka Technologies. Our experts will work closely with a company’s own IT personnel to devise and deploy unique automation strategies and tools that can future-proof the organization’s IT.