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How to secure the multi-cloud environment?

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Cloud computing may sound like a trivial tech term, but it has dominated the IT industry since the pandemic. Cloud computing offers plethora of advantages such as agility, cost efficiency, virtual communication and collaboration for remote teams.

Considering these benefits, enterprises are increasingly migrating their workloads to the cloud and witnessing cost savings, enhanced security, predictability in spends, and capability to innovate and manage complex applications. Like any new technology, cloud computing is evolving and new trends keep cropping up. And, multi-cloud environment is one such trend.

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Also Read: How to safeguard your data in the cloud?

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Multi-cloud is the use of multiple cloud computing and storage services in a single heterogeneous architecture. In other words, it refers to the distribution of cloud assets, software, applications, etc. across several cloud-hosting environments. There are many reasons for an enterprise to opt for a multi-cloud architecture such as – cost efficiency, reduced latency, enhanced flexibility and scalability, and most importantly reducing dependencies on a single vendor.

Despite its numerous advantages, multi-cloud environment makes the management of IT infrastructure a complex task. This complexity is the result of each cloud having its own isolated systems and configuration, and the data constantly moves through these disparate systems. Hence, it is vital to secure sensitive data with many layers. Below mentioned are some of the measures that can be taken to ensure the security of the multi-cloud environment.

  • Create a unified security policy – For securing multi-cloud environment, it is very important to define and create a unified security policy that remains constant across cloud services providers.
  • Consolidate security tools – Maintaining consistency in security in a multi-cloud environment is imperative, hence organizations must deploy centralized security tools. For instance, data should always be encrypted while in transit or at rest across different cloud service providers with the same policies for data back-up.
  • Automate security processes – Ensuring security should be a constant exercise, hence it shouldn’t be controlled manually as human can only monitor for a certain period. Security processes such as monitoring and identification of threat events, mitigating risk, and securing the end-points should be fully automated to ensure perpetual security.
  • Use open-source platforms – In a multi-cloud environment, if an organization uses cloud-specific servers, then faster deployment of applications across platforms becomes a task. Hence, it is advisable to use open-source container orchestration platforms such as Kubernetes to minimize the complexities of cloud integration. Open-source platforms not only facilitate centralization of security configurations but also minimize managing numerous security options across platforms.
  • Use a cloud management platform – A cloud management platform provides a set of tools and procedures that allow a business to seamlessly monitor and secure applications and workloads across multiple public clouds. It also allows IT teams to manage multiple clouds from a single interface and supports open source platforms.

As hybrid working models are gaining momentum, multi-cloud environments are gaining wide acceptance. They not only transform an organization’s IT infrastructure but also open up avenues for faster development and deployment of applications. If an organization wants to make the most out of this cloud infrastructure, then they need to have clearly defined and consolidated strategies to enhance their security efforts.

As written by Shrikant Navelkar, Director, Clover Infotech, and published in CRN India

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