Cloud workloads are vulnerable to a wide range of cyber security threats. These include data breaches, phishing attacks, ransomware threats, and distributed denial of service (DDoS) attacks. Cyber adversaries have previously disrupted cloud functionalities through the use of stolen credentials and compromised applications. Strong cloud workload security is critical in ensuring business continuity and regulatory compliance.
What is workload security?
To grasp “workload security,” one must first understand the definition of a “workload.” Merriam-Webster’s dictionary characterizes a workload as “the amount of work performed or capable of being performed…within a specific period.” In computing, a workload is comprised of processes and resources that enable an application to function.
Workload security is often discussed in relation to cloud workload security, which refers to the process of keeping resources that migrate through different cloud-based environments secure. Workload security can also refer to protection for app-based services, some of which exist within the cloud.
How it works
Organizations need to address workload security at both the cloud workload security level and at the app level. Focusing exclusively on the individual underlying workloads in isolation can leave holes in security, as issues with business logic could inadvertently be overlooked.
Conversely, if all of the focus is placed on the application security and the corresponding business logic, then issues with workload interactions could render applications continuously vulnerable to threats.
Why it matters
Workload security can have a direct impact on an organization’s regulatory compliance posture. Due to the widespread adoption of cloud computing and remote working, how organizations manage, deploy and secure workloads has shifted. It’s essential to adopt best practices, along with a layered approach to modern workload security.
Securing your workloads
Developing a strong workload security posture can be a question of following established best practices. Key principles to follow include:
- Starting with the big picture. Start by protecting applications as a whole, and implementing security that extends to apps’ APIs.
- Securing individual workloads. After securing an application in its entirety, examine the workloads that make up the application. Ensure that these workloads remain properly configured and that your organization retains adequate visibility, which can allow for easy detection of suspicious activities.
- Embracing automation. Secure cloud workloads by automatically deploying and configuring security at both the application and the individual workload level.
As your organization’s infrastructure continues to evolve, your cyber security needs to keep pace.
A layered approach
New types of workloads within the cloud require the rethinking of traditional security practices. Providing workload security at various layers of your system can help ensure that microservice architectures remain as secure as possible.
It’s challenging to manage multiple solutions in a complex environment. Choose a fully automated security architecture that can offer a complete range of workload security capabilities.
Well-managed cloud workloads, apps and APIs significantly reduce the probability of successful attacks, ensuring that your enterprise can continue to function without interruption or hindrance. For more information about workload security solutions, click here.
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