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Who Protects the Cloud? And Why Your Business Should Care

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Antoine Saikaley

Antoine Saikaley

Canada Technical Director, Trend Micro

Is your company prepared for the cybersecurity risks that come with remote work? Learn how to protect your company and how Trend Micro can help.

During the pandemic, cloud adoption was accelerated at a rate never seen before — but moving to the cloud quickly without considering security could be leaving companies vulnerable.

According to a recent study, cloud data centres will process 94 percent of all enterprise workloads in 2021. This is due to the many benefits that the cloud brings to companies, including reduced IT costs, automated upgrades, scalability, collaboration efficiency, and flexible work practices — like working from home — which are all key during a pandemic.

This shift to remote work during the pandemic has resulted in a 238 percent increase in global cyberattacks. This statistic comes from a recent report released by HP and KuppingerCole, an international, independent analyst firm, which assessed remote work and its cyber risks.

Holding businesses responsible for their own security

As organizations embrace cloud digital transformation, there are also cyber risks to consider.

“A common misconception is the fact that security is the cloud service provider’s responsibility,” says Antoine Saikaley, the Canada Technical Director at Trend Micro, a cybersecurity giant that currently protects over 500,000 enterprise and commercial organizations. “Organizations using the cloud need to understand that security is actually their responsibility and need to ensure that their applications and data are secure.”

The good news is that tools exist to make cloud security more integrated, easier, and a lot more effective than many IT leaders believe. Finding the right security partner now is more important than ever.

While it protects people and organizations from all over the world, Trend Micro is also deeply invested in Canada — with over 300 Canadian employees in four locations and three out of seven of its cloud services being researched and developed locally. This allows Canadian businesses to protect their existing on-premise infrastructure and devices, as well as their cloud environments — all under one platform.

Every employee plays a role in security

“Businesses that are unprepared for remote work may see an increased risk of corporate or customer data being stolen by hackers,” says Saikaley. “For example, security management consoles that relied on devices being connected inside the network perimeter will lose cyber threat visibility and control with devices at home with no connection to the corporate network.”

A recent study by Trend Micro, Cyber Risk Index 2021, found that 84 percent of North American organizations are likely to experience a data breach of customer records within the next 12 months.

As well, the study from HP found that 70 percent of workers will access their work devices for personal use due to remote work — including for gaming, using streaming services, and online learning, or homework — which will further put these devices, and the company itself, at risk for an attack.

In addition, Saikaley points out that over 90 percent of breaches start with a phishing email and notes the importance of companies having an awareness strategy to ensure that employees gain an understanding of what phishing looks like.

Phishing attacks are designed to trick victims into revealing personal information, like work passwords, and can lead to exposing devices to harmful ransomware or viruses, impacting company finances and brand reputation. These attacks can mimic websites or emails that you already access, like streaming sites, gaming sites, or even banking sites. As a result, attackers can gain access to private, sensitive information from companies through their employees.

This means it’s important for an organization to train everyone, whether they’re a security leader, an employee working at home, or even a board member, on cybersecurity risks.

How trend micro can help

A challenge many organizations face is that the cloud isn’t simple, and many of the technologies that make up the cloud are new, with new features being deployed all the time. Understanding how these work and — more importantly — how to secure them can be difficult.

Utilizing a security platform approach can help build your cloud to be more secure, but educating your architects and administrators will also help. One key area is hardening your cloud account credentials, as these will be regularly targeted by malicious actors. Using multi-factor authentication to access all accounts can minimize this risk tremendously.

“The Cloud One platform is ideal for organizations or businesses that are migrating to the cloud,” says Saikaley. “It provides enhanced visibility, detection, and response, and ensures that regulated workloads are meeting compliance and are protected, and that infrastructure misconfigurations are remediated promptly.” While businesses must modernize with software as a service (SaaS) based deployments to provide protection, they also need to supplement that security by achieving user, device, and cloud application risk insight through continuous risk monitoring such as with Trend Micro’s Zero Trust Risk Insights service — plus additional visibility, detection, and response.

With an increasing amount of cyber threats every day, it’s important for businesses to be prepared for any risks they might face. By combining a strong security strategy that encompasses all levels of an organization, a market-leading cybersecurity platform and world-class threat research, businesses can become more resilient in the new post-pandemic world.

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