Addressing SaaS Security Misconfiguration Risks

Addressing SaaS Security Misconfiguration Risks

Software as a Service (SaaS) applications provide businesses with a cost-effective, reliable and scalable approach to immediately optimize business operations. However, using SaaS applications has some security risks, many of which are related to misconfigurations that, if left unchecked, leave IT ecosystems vulnerable to cyber-threats.

Attacks on SaaS are on the rise. The pandemic accelerated the already-exploding SaaS space, causing industries that had no intention of switching to do so.

Many businesses are battling to secure their SaaS estate with SaaS apps becoming the default system of record for many companies. Although CISOs and security experts are working to minimize the threat landscape, it is still a work in progress. SaaS misconfigurations may be at blame for up to 63 percent of security incidents, according to the CSA’s 2022 SaaS Security Survey report.

A single minor misconfiguration or unprotected user authorization could open the door to an attack. Hundreds of SaaS apps are currently used by most businesses. There are hundreds of global parameters to monitor, configure, and constantly update, as well as thousands to tens of thousands of user roles and permissions. With such a large number of settings and configurations, it’s no surprise that there are so many exploitable flaws. 

Security teams must understand how to configure SaaS apps properly if enterprises want to be protected from all types of threats. Here’s a rundown of some of the most common SaaS configuration mistakes that security teams should be aware of in order to reduce risks.

Also Read: 3 Security Strategies CISOs Should Consider for SaaS Applications

Ensure that admins are using Multi-Factor Authentication 

The Single Sign-On (SSO) control is an important feature for ensuring security when using SaaS apps. However, some users may choose to bypass the SSO control on purpose. While the SSO is turned on, SaaS vendors allow system users to log in using their usernames and passwords during maintenance sessions and other similar situations. Apart from that, after Multi-Factor Authentication, super users can be granted access. Furthermore, if all administrators use the same usernames and passwords, the attacker will have simple access to all accounts if the credentials of admins are compromised.

Turn on auditing to improve visibility and control

It’s a fact that one cannot know or understand what you cannot see, which is why security needs to be on top of any information or issues that aren’t being addressed. Many companies find that the built-in auditing features of SaaS services are sufficient. However, due to security concerns, certain businesses require additional auditing features. Companies must dig deeper and ensure that they are fully optimized against any potential security flaws.

Look for loose ends so that nobody accesses the data subset anonymously

It is critical that no one has access to business data without the knowledge of security professionals. It’s not easy to maintain complete control over corporate data, and it’ll be even more challenging if organizations use SaaS. It is crucial to start by locating all publicly accessible resources, such as discussions, dashboards, forms, and other data components. If security teams discover any flaws, they must address them immediately to avoid a data breach and take all necessary precautions to keep complete control over their company’s data.

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