Security leaders predict that enterprises will increasingly gravitate towards cloud adoption and identity-based security measures in 2021
CISOs point out that for years enterprises have been planning to move to the cloud. The advantages of the move point to an overwhelming evidence as to why it is a priority. Some major benefits are cost, flexibility, availability of advanced applications, etc. Of course, the moving of an enterprise to a cloud platform depends on the size, budget, and industry. The significant contention now is not whether organizations will migrate, but when they will complete the process.
In 2020, as organizations rushed to accommodate remote work requirements via cloud migration, they experienced various on-premises network issues. At the same time, new faults in the cloud-based environments were also exposed. The major liabilities occurred due to conventional access methods. This is a very critical aspect, especially with the current dispersed workforce. CISOs predict that in 2021, organizations will be required to figure out new remote working policies without sacrificing security measures.
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New practices for the New Year
In 2021, CIOs say that enterprises will need to recognize that a successful cloud migration journey is not a one-time done project, they should realize that it requires a shift in the culture as well. Conventional practices- including strict access controls or the use of help and support desks, can potentially stunt the benefits of decentralized cloud-fueled environments.
Understanding the cloud as the new data center: CIOs say that when enterprises shift their infrastructure to the cloud, they improve their agility of services adoption and disaster recovery, and also streamline their scalability.
Blurring the line between personal and official devices: Security leaders acknowledge that even before the pandemic changed the work environment, enterprises had started relaxing their lines on personal and professional devices. BYOD allowed for better productivity and flexibility as contractors and employees could access the required services from any device or geo-location.
The great wide Internet works as the network: Employees and end-users are distinguished from the data center or cloud and will use zero-trust tech to access services needs for work.
Identity-based authentication will provide new opportunities
CISOs acknowledge that a natural result of the above three architectural elements, and the most critical one is setting up identity services as the boundary. As more organizations adopted remote work, anomalies, and abnormalities that were traditionally considered red flags became part of the new normal. It eroded the existing definition of the perimeter.
Gerald Beuchelt, Chief Information Security Officer at LogMeIn, says, “We will see more and more organizations adopting passwordless authentication in 2021. As IT teams continue to battle remote work challenges and poor password behaviors persist, streamlining and simplifying the login experience for employees will be more important than ever. In fact, today’s IT teams are spending an average of six hours a week on password-related issues alone. I envision more organizations will move to a passwordless experience by adopting IAM solutions, such as a password manager, SSO, and biometric authentication, in order to help reduce the challenges and risks associated with traditional password logins.”
Boosted by the cloud tech, employees can access data from new places, devices, and at varying times of the day. The new perimeter is the user themselves- basically their identity more than their location or which network they are connected to.
The new perimeter will require enterprises to deploy user identities as the new keys in the IT industry. It will be essential for organizations to embrace security controls to authenticate users and employees. This practice requires a higher number of granular indicators compared to earlier times. Only when an organization can successfully verify the identity of the user, regardless of the location or device, will there be a reduction in the security challenges.