Watch Out For Cloud Assets That Are Unmanaged – Chuck Leaver

Written By Logan Gilbert And Presented By Chuck Leaver


We all identify with the vision of the hooded villain bending over his computer late in the evening – accessing a business network, taking valuable data, vanishing without a trace. We personify the opponent as intelligent, determined, and sly. However the truth is the large bulk of attacks are made possible by easy human carelessness or recklessness – making the job of the cyber criminal a simple one. He’s examining all the doors and windows constantly. All it takes is one error on your part and he’s in.

What do we do? Well, you already know the answer. We spend a good chunk of our IT spending plan on security defense-in-depth layers – created to discover, deceive, trip, or outright block the villains. Let’s park the discussion on whether or not we are winning that war. Because there is a far much easier war taking place – the one where the attacker enters your network, organization vital application, or IP/PPI data through a vector you didn’t even comprehend you had – the asset that is unmanaged – often referred to as Shadow IT.

Believe this is not your business? A current study recommends the average enterprise has 841 cloud apps in use. Remarkably, most IT executives believe the number of cloud apps in use by their organization is around 30-40 – implying they are incorrect by an element of 20X. The same report highlights that more than 98 percent of cloud apps are not GDPR ready, and 95% of enterprise class cloud apps are not SOC 2 ready.

Shadow IT/ Unmanaged Assets Defined

Shadow IT is specified as any SaaS application utilized – by staff members, departments, or whole organization groups – without the knowledge or authorization of the company’s IT department. In addition, the development of ‘everything as a service’ has actually made it even easier for employees to access whatever software they feel is required to make them more efficient.

The Impact

Well intentioned staff members typically don’t realize they’re breaking corporate rules by activating a new server instance, or downloading unauthorized apps or software offerings. However, it occurs. And when it does, 3 issues can arise:

1. Business standards within an organization are compromised because unapproved software suggests each computer has different abilities.

2. Rogue software often comes with security defects, putting the entire network at risk and making it much more hard for IT to manage security dangers.

3. Asset blind spots not only drive up security and compliance threats, they can increase legal risk. Info retention policies developed to restrict legal liability are being skirted with information contained on unauthorized cloud assets.

Three Vital Considerations for Dealing With Unmanaged Asset Threats

1. Initially, release tools that can supply comprehensive visibility into all cloud assets- managed and unmanaged. Know what new virtual machines have actually been activated this week, along with what other devices and applications with which each VM instance is communicating.

2. Second, make sure your tooling can supply constant inventory of licensed and unapproved virtual machines operating in the cloud. Make sure you have visibility into all IP connections made to each asset.

3. Third, for compliance and/or forensic analysis functions search for a solution that provides a capture of any and all assets (virtual and physical) that have actually ever been on the network – not simply a service that is limited to active assets – and within a short look back window.

Unmanaged Asset Discovery with Ziften

Ziften makes it simple to quickly find cloud assets that have actually been commissioned beyond IT’s province. And we do it constantly and with deep historical recall at your fingertips – including when each device first connected to the network, when it last appeared, and how often it reconnects. And if a virtual device is decommissioned, this is not a problem, we still have all its historic habits data.

Recognize and protect covert attack vectors stemming from shadow IT – prior to a catastrophe. Know exactly what’s happening in your cloud environment.

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