If you want better security in the cloud, “develop a relationship with the security team at the cloud provider,” said Craig Rosen, CISO, AppDynamics in our conversation at the 2016 Black Hat conference in Las Vegas.
Surprisingly, many organizations don’t spend the time to do just that. But if you talk with the provider’s cloud security team as to what you want, then they’ll be able to help you achieve your security goals.
“Don’t just throw the book at them. Don’t just say, ‘Here’s my 200-page security addendum’ and hold a hard line. Have a conversation,” advised Rosen.
That conversation should focus initially on transparency. You want to know what the provider is giving you in the way of APIs, certifications, encryption, and keys. What’s in the contract, and what’s not in the contract? Then ask them, what more can they do?
If you throw the book at them, it’s just checking the box, said Rosen.
That’s a faux sense of maybe compliance, but it’s not security.
What Rosen advises is to look more at intent with cloud companies and understand that there are going to be gaps, there are going to be risks. But if the cloud provider wants to work with you, that’s a strong sign you’ll have a more secure environment.
With regard to transparency, cloud providers need to open up with respect to APIs, said Rosen. That’s the best way cloud consumers can gain visibility. And if there could be standardization across those APIs, that would be tremendously helpful for anyone using cloud services.