For security and IT professionals, the work is becoming more and more complex. With widely dispersed groups rapidly becoming the norm, new technologies emerging, and increasing levels of threats, it’s a big job and a lot of things need to continue.
There is no doubt that IT needs smarter security. Security management needs to change to take into account “combined” working models as well as the new world of cloud services, BYOD, and remote access. Comprehensive security solutions such as Security Information and Event Management (SIEM) and Cloud Access Security Brokers (CASB) have been helping to prepare businesses to cater to distributed or remote working forces. User and entity behavior analysis (UEBA) also plays an important role in detecting threats using machine learning to determine when the activity of a particular user or entity is abnormal and flag it as a possible security breach.
It depends on the cloud.
However, with organizations increasingly reliant on cloud-based applications and services for employees to spend more time working remotely, there is even greater pressure on their security management.
CASB’s mission is to monitor all activities between cloud service users and cloud applications, and enforcing security policies becomes even more important when most of a company’s employees are working remotely using cloud services. As a central repository for the company’s data sources across a variety of environments, including in-cloud SaaS applications and other on-premises applications, the effectiveness of the SIEM solution will be tested by the rise of access points from a lot of home-based employees.
With an increasingly fragmented workforce, all of the company’s existing security solutions face the challenge of dealing with more access points and potential threats. For example, a business may need to implement a solution that takes data from CASB and applies UEBA to determine if a particular user’s behavior needs to be flagged as suspicious.
Security is becoming much more complex for businesses capable of working remotely, more data, and more places that have access from more users, testing the capabilities of their existing solutions.
With the combined work to stay here, the focus of security needs to be on catering to a much more flexible and fluid workforce. It is important to implement strong policies and controls, but also to adopt technology that can adapt quickly and learn on your own.
If a company allows employees to work from a variety of positions, then that company needs to be able to handle that without having to manually update certain content in context boards or active folders. For example, at Bitglass, we are completely remote. In the past, most of our workers were in Silicon Valley and we worked directly together a lot, in small kitchens and a really close group. Within a few weeks, we turned to people working from home and using Zoom. In doing so, we face the same challenges as all of our customers.
People are no longer in our office or on our network physically, or physically behind the firewall in place. Many people are using the SaaS apps they need to do their job but they may also be using personal devices to access apps and services as needed. Remote app access with a personal device can have serious consequences, so businesses need to pay attention to how they are managing SaaS applications and web access.
Therefore, it is important to deploy a level of web security, such as a secure web portal, to ensure safe endpoints before an attack and reduce the risk of them being compromised. This is a pressing issue because people working from home are a very attractive target for hackers and the level of attacks has increased sharply in recent months.
Another issue involves functions on a managed computer, such as synchronizing files in the cloud with files on your laptop. Not putting in place a policy to prevent that from automatically happening on unregulated devices can be a disaster if large numbers of personal devices are synchronizing the company’s data.
Many companies have no choice but to accept the reality of working remotely because employees have accepted the better balance it brings between family and work. Security departments and IT teams must adopt security tools to allow companies that meet the challenge of supporting remote working with SaaS applications while maintaining the same kind of security as they already have on-premises.
In the context of the transition to catering to distributed workplaces and making cloud applications and services more secure, companies also face the inevitable fact of trying to combat rising levels of threats with the same number of security professionals.