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The dirty dozen: 12 cloud security threats

Fahmida Y. Rashid | March 14, 2016
Introducing the 'Treacherous 12,' the top security threats organizations face when using cloud services.

DoS attacks consume large amounts of processing power, a bill the customer may ultimately have to pay. While high-volume DDoS attacks are very common, organizations should be aware of asymmetric, application-level DoS attacks, which target Web server and database vulnerabilities.

Cloud providers tend to be better poised to handle DoS attacks than their customers, the CSA said. The key is to have a plan to mitigate the attack before it occurs, so administrators have access to those resources when they need them.

Threat No. 12: Shared technology, shared dangers

Vulnerabilities in shared technology pose a significant threat to cloud computing. Cloud service providers share infrastructure, platforms, and applications, and if a vulnerability arises in any of these layers, it affects everyone. “A single vulnerability or misconfiguration can lead to a compromise across an entire provider’s cloud,” the report said.

If an integral component gets compromised -- say, a hypervisor, a shared platform component, or an application -- it exposes the entire environment to potential compromise and breach. The CSA recommended a defense-in-depth strategy, including multifactor authentication on all hosts, host-based and network-based intrusion detection systems, applying the concept of least privilege, network segmentation, and patching shared resources.


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