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45% of IT struggle with saas security. Here’s why

Stephanie Solis

May 14, 2024

4 minute read

Illustration of intersecting lines and icons representing security.

The cloud offers unparalleled flexibility and scalability for businesses, but with great power comes great responsibility. As more and more sensitive data migrates to the cloud, robust security measures are essential.

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76% of respondents are responsible for protecting sensitive data within SaaS apps and 45% say they have trouble securing users’ activities within SaaS apps.”
– State of SaaS 2024, coming soon

IT professionals monitor file activity and manage employee access to applications, only granting necessary access for job responsibilities.

Confidential data leaks are surprisingly common, from misplaced emails to misconfigured cloud storage exposing sensitive information. Manual monitoring can’t catch everything, so automated security tools are a must.

The cloud security threat landscape: A constant battleground

Widespread adoption of cloud storage (expected to reach a staggering $832.1 billion by 2025) reflects its ubiquitous role in modern business, but also attracts malicious actors, leading to a rise in sophisticated cyberattacks. Data breaches, ransomware attacks, and unauthorized access attempts pose a constant threat to cloud-stored information.

These evolving threats necessitate a proactive approach to cloud security. The days of reactive measures, scrambling to contain a breach after it has occurred, are long gone. IT professionals must be vigilant gatekeepers, constantly monitoring and adapting their security postures.

To achieve this proactive stance, for SaaS security compliance, at the very least, you need to define processes for:

  • Enforcing access privileges
  • Protecting your organization’s sensitive data
  • Data retention
  • Reporting and audit logs to prove compliance

By implementing these processes, organizations can significantly bolster their cloud security posture and mitigate the risks associated with cyberattacks.

Some key considerations for fortifying your cloud security include…

Understanding your data

The first step towards effective data protection is understanding what sensitive data you possess and where it resides in the cloud. This involves data classification, identifying information that requires the highest level of security due to its legal, financial, or reputational significance.

Data encryption

Encryption is a fundamental safeguard that renders data unreadable to anyone who doesn’t possess the decryption key. Data that is either stored (at rest) or being transferred (in transit) must be encrypted using algorithms that meet industry standards.

RBAC

Role-Based Access Control (RBAC) is a powerful security principle that grants access to users based on their job function and responsibilities. Think of it as a sophisticated entry system at your digital castle, where each person has a specific key that unlocks only designated doors.

RBAC establishes a clear hierarchy of access permissions, ensuring that users only have access to the data they need to perform their tasks. This minimizes the risk of unauthorized access and accidental exposure of sensitive data.

Here’s how RBAC bolsters cloud security:

  • Least privilege principle: RBAC enforces the principle of least privilege, granting users the minimum level of access required for their job function. This limits the potential damage if a malicious actor gains access to a user’s credentials.
  • Reduced attack surface: Limiting user access to specific data sets reduces the overall attack surface for cybercriminals. With less data to exploit, the risk of a successful breach is significantly decreased.
  • Improved compliance: Many data privacy regulations require organizations to implement robust access controls. RBAC provides a documented framework for demonstrating compliance with these regulations.

The power of IT automation: Enhance cloud security posture

The sheer volume of data stored in the cloud, coupled with the constant influx of access requests, can overwhelm even the most vigilant IT teams. This is where IT automation shines, empowering IT professionals to function with “superpowers” in the digital realm.

By automating routine tasks such as user provisioning, permission configuration, and data access audits, IT professionals can free up valuable time and resources. This allows them to focus on developing proactive threat detection strategies and implementing advanced security protocols.

Here’s how IT automation bolsters cloud security:

  • Reduced human error: Manual processes are prone to human error, which can create security vulnerabilities. Automating tasks like user provisioning and permission assignment ensures consistency and eliminates the risk of accidental misconfigurations.
  • Improved efficiency: Automating repetitive tasks frees IT professionals from being bogged down by administrative burdens. This allows them to focus on more strategic initiatives, such as vulnerability assessment and penetration testing.
  • Enhanced scalability: Cloud environments are inherently scalable, and security processes need to keep pace. Automated workflows can easily adapt to accommodate additional users, applications, or cloud storage resources.

Unveiling the invisible: Content scanning detects cloud threats

Traditional security measures act as a moat around a castle, guarding the perimeter. But for a layered defense, content scanning functions like an active fly on the wall inside the castle, monitoring activity and listening for anything suspicious.

Content scanning in BetterCloud helps IT and security teams manage sensitive data within your files in the cloud. This centralized platform is an incredible asset to scan for sensitive data, set up alerts, and automate remediation actions.

This proactive approach adds an extra layer of security to help prevent data leaks and streamline security workflows.

How BetterCloud improved security controls for Narvar

Narvar, a company with a fully cloud-based IT infrastructure, faced challenges in managing document access and user permissions for various SaaS applications. Their previous solution lacked user-friendliness and created bottlenecks for access requests.

BetterCloud addressed these challenges by offering:

  • Centralized document management: Narvar can easily identify document ownership and grant appropriate access.
  • Improved security auditing: They can quickly fix mistaken document sharing and gain visibility into user permissions.
  • SaaS platform management: BetterCloud provides a single “pane of glass” to manage and audit various SaaS applications like Salesforce, Zendesk, and Slack.
  • Cost savings: By reducing unnecessary licenses and consolidating administrative tasks, Narvar saves money on IT operations.

Read the full story about how BetterCloud helped Narvar increase IT efficiency and improve security posture.

BetterCloud empowers the “guardians” of the cloud

BetterCloud empowers IT professionals to become true guardians of the cloud, ensuring the safety and integrity of the valuable information entrusted to their care. The platform streamlines IT automation, allowing IT professionals to automate file security processes and wield the “superpowers” of efficiency and scalability.

Schedule a product walkthrough with BetterCloud to experience the power of IT automation and see firsthand how it can elevate your cloud security to a whole new level.

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