App Identity Modernization

What are the risks of cloud migration?

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A recent IT Toolbox article, Top Security Considerations for Transitioning from Private to Public Cloud, emphasized that organizations should re-evaluate how they safeguard their data and apps when they are moving from public to private cloud infrastructures. It first highlights the concerns that many companies have when moving from private infrastructures to public clouds. The migration risks of moving to the cloud are not insignificant and must be considered.

“Despite the benefits derived from using public cloud platforms, organizations are hesitant to push their workloads, data, and containers to the cloud, fearing the vulnerabilities occurring during the transition process. Here are some tips and insights from cybersecurity experts on how organizations can securely migrate from private to public cloud without putting their data at risk.”

Companies that move to the cloud today will most likely employ multiple clouds which means managing multiple identities. The reason is that each cloud vendor has unique strengths and applications may work better on one cloud versus another. Hence, a one-cloud approach generally does not work for larger enterprises. Eric Olden, CEO of Strata, and security expert outlines in this article three key risks for companies who are moving to the cloud and three risks for those that have already moved to the cloud.

Outdated technology exposures: Most mature companies struggle with decades of technical debt that has piled up over time. When combined with technologies that haven’t evolved, it’s a recipe for risk.

Slow migration: Meanwhile, many organizations can’t migrate to the cloud fast enough because they are forced to rewrite their apps to work in cloud environments. This can lead to apps getting ‘stuck’ on-premises, putting cloud adoption at risk.

Skills shortages: Lastly, it is tough for enterprises that rely on legacy systems to find the talent needed to run these outdated systems.

For organizations that have already moved to the cloud, there are different, yet important, risks to consider:

Fragmentation: Multi-cloud is inevitable for most organizations as they look to diversify their investments and hedge and leverage each cloud’s unique capabilities. With multi-cloud comes fragmentation across these clouds and stacks. Fragmentation makes it hard to see the inconsistencies, which can lead to the risk of unexpected access combinations across systems.

Distributed Management: With distributed applications and architectures, you need to manage many things in many places outside the confines of the data center. Many organizations don’t have the tools to manage distributed environments since this is a new problem. The risk is more fragmentation paired with a lack of tooling to manage the cloud sprawl for identity and access management.

Lock-in: Lastly, the risk of lock-in to cloud platforms because identity is tightly integrated directly with applications. Once an app is integrated with identity, it usually requires rewriting the app to change clouds or identity providers.

Olden correctly points out that moving to the cloud introduces new security challenges that did not exist five years ago. While the benefits of cloud adoption are many, identity management becomes a focal point before, during, and after the transition.

Read the full IT Toolbox article on key security considerations when moving from a private infrastructure to a cloud infrastructure.

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