By, Kristin Manogue, Product Marketing Manager, Cloud Security Posture Management
Companies have never been under such close scrutiny as to how they collect, process, and retain data and other online assets. Regulators, industry leaders, and users expect personal data—whether in-transit or at-rest—to be effectively protected against loss, corruption, or theft. The cost of failing to comply with regulations, standards, and expectations can be very high in terms of revenue loss, user dissatisfaction, brand damage, forensics and recovery expenses, and crippling fines.
In short, maintaining a robust security posture has become a business-critical requirement at a time when the security threat landscape is more challenging than ever. Today’s highly distributed cloud-native applications with their ephemeral workloads running on complex hybrid/multi-cloud infrastructures present extensive and vulnerable attack surfaces to malicious actors, who are getting more sophisticated all the time.
In the shared responsibility model, the provider secures its compute-store-network infrastructure resources, while the customer is responsible for securely configuring its accounts and the assets that run on the public cloud infrastructure. An enterprise-grade cloud security posture management (CSPM) solution that leverages cloud-native security tools and services is no longer a nice-to-have. It is essential for:
- End-to-end and dynamic visibility into compliance
- Automated misconfiguration remediation
- Proactive threat prevention
- Intelligent security posture visualizations
This article summarizes the key considerations that an enterprise should bear in mind when choosing the optimal CSPM platform for its needs. Please also refer to our ebook A Buyer’s Guide to Cloud Security Posture Management for additional insights and information.
The Top 10 Considerations for Evaluating a Cloud Security Posture Management Solution
- Automated, continuous asset discovery across all environments and architectures to ensure full real-time coverage and eliminate blind spots—with automatic identification of high-risk assets that store or process sensitive data
- Context-aware, enriched asset visualizations of all resources connected to the network and the relationships among them, for inspecting, detecting, and fixing misconfigurations
- Pre-deployment evaluation of the impact of Infrastructure-as-Code (IaC) repositories on your security posture so that vulnerabilities in IaC templates are not propagated by deployed instances
- High-fidelity visibility that is deep, real-time, explorable, and centralized, based on integration with and aggregation of all the various infrastructure-monitoring data streams to provide real-time insights into data flows and audit trails
- Continuous compliance that keeps up with high-velocity CI/CD pipelines, ephemeral workloads, and the highly elastic nature of public cloud infrastructure
- Out-of-the-box, always-up-to-date support for all compliance frameworks, such as SOX, PCI, HIPAA, and GDPR, as well as cybersecurity and compliance best practices, such as CIS Controls™ and CIS Benchmarks™
- Customizable and flexible so that it can be tweaked to meet the unique needs of your organization’s products, processes, policies, and architectures
- Dynamically translates governance requirements into error-free, easy-to-understand rules that are automatically applied in a consistent manner across all infrastructures
- Always audit-ready, with intuitive and customizable queries and reports
- Proactive protection, with real-time alerts to detect policy violations and intrusions for timely preventive actions, as well as the ability to automatically remediate misconfigurations
Extending Cloud-Native Security Posture Management
Cloud providers offer valuable services and tools for compliance management (such as AWS Security Hub, AWS Config, and Azure Security Center) and threat detection (such as Amazon GuardDuty, AWS CloudTrail, Amazon Macie, and Azure Sentinel). However, these services and tools are specific to the cloud provider. In a multi-cloud/hybrid infrastructure, it is very difficult to harness these disparate tools to gain the actionable end-to-end visibility essential for effective cloud security posture management. That is why it is so important that your CSPM platform be able to deeply integrate with cloud-native tools and include their outputs in a centralized source of security posture truth.
Other ways that a robust CSPM platform can extend cloud-native security posture management are:
- More frequent and full scanning: A near real-time scanning cadence and automatic inclusion of all discovered assets in the scan coverage
- More compliance frameworks and best practices: Built-in support for a complete range of compliance frameworks and best practices, with the ability to easily customize requirements to your organization’s unique needs
- Easy rule creation: Rather than hundreds of lines of code, an intuitive methodology for building simple and expressive rules
- Actionable visualizations: Intelligent visibility and clear situational awareness, including auto-classification of high-risk assets, real-time topology, and visual tracking of traffic flow and user actions
- Advanced proactive protection: Based on global threat intelligence, real-time anomaly detection and intrusion alerts, granular IAM control and privilege elevation, and automated remediation
CloudGuard: Cloud-Native Security Posture Management
Among the CSPM platforms that should be included in any evaluation is CloudGuard Security Posture Management, an API-based agentless SaaS cloud-compliance and orchestration platform that is an integral part of Check Point’s cloud–native CloudGuard security platform, as shown in Figure 1. CloudGuard Posture Management automates governance across multi-cloud assets and services including the visualization and assessment of your security posture, detection of misconfigurations, and enforcement of security best practices and compliance frameworks.
CloudGuard Security Posture Management is the industry’s most comprehensive compliance solution, delivering:
- Full asset coverage and discovery across all environments, including all asset types (compute instances, load balancers, serverless, etc.)
- Context-enriched graphic visualizations of assets and their levels of exposure, with easy inspection of asset configurations
- High-fidelity visibility via API integrations with cloud-native and third-party tools and immediate information flow
- Full-compliance scans across the entire environment in near real-time, plus on-demand scans
- Built-in support for all leading compliance and best-practice standards, with a simple customization interface
- 1,500+ easily customizable compliance rules that are enforced automatically, plus auto-remediation of detected misconfigurations
- Real-time detection and alerts of prioritized vulnerabilities, with advanced threat intelligence and analytics to minimize or prevent attacks
Empower your cloud security team with an enterprise-grade platform that provides real-time and actionable visibility into the security posture of all your cloud assets across your multi-cloud infrastructure. Make sure that your cloud security posture management framework is flexible, agile, and dynamic so that you can conduct business at scale and speed without sacrificing security.
Download our ebook, A Buyer’s Guide to Cloud Security Posture Management, for additional insights and information, and contact Check Point for even more information or to discuss your cloud security posture management needs with one of our cloud security engineers.