Cloud Security Authors: Liz McMillan, Dana Gardner, Elizabeth White, Pat Romanski, Yeshim Deniz

Related Topics: Cloud Security, Java IoT, Microservices Expo, Containers Expo Blog, Agile Computing, @CloudExpo

Cloud Security: Article

The Future of Security in the Enterprise

Raf Los: Extend IT security to its mature state of enterprise resiliency

This edition of the HP Discover Performance podcast series examines the future of security in the enterprise. As the need to protect and manage assets extends beyond the four walls of the organization -- with the adoption of cloud and mobile -- how should the thinking about traditional security adjust?

I recently had a chance to sit down with Raf Los of HP Software to gather his perspective on the answer to that question. Los has an interesting personal perspective on the concept of “enterprise resiliency,” which I initially heard about through his blog, Following the White Rabbit. He's also on Twitter at @wh1t3rabbit. [Disclosure: HP is a sponsor of BriefingsDirect podcasts.]

Join me as we unpack with Los the concept of enterprise resiliency as the natural maturity direction for IT security in general.

Here are some excerpts from our discussion:

Gardner: Tell me a little bit about your vision. We all understand security and why it’s important, but you've developed, I think, an expanded category for security.

Los: Security, over the years, has evolved from an absolute concept of a binary decision: is it secure or is it not? As we move forward, I believe very strongly that what we’re evolving into is, as we’ve heard people talk about, risk management.

Risk management starts to include things that are beyond the security borders. As I talked to customers out here, I was having an "aha" moment. A little while ago, at one of our converged cloud chats, we were talking about how things fail. Everything fails at some point, and chaos takes over.

So rather than talking about security, which is a set of absolutes or a concrete topic, and boxing ourselves into threats from a security perspective, the evolution of that goes into enterprise resiliency. What that means is that it’s a combination of recoverability, security, performance, and all the other things that bring together a well-oiled business that can let you take a shot to the gut, get back up, and keep going.

A lot of the CISOs nowadays are set up to fail by their organizations. It’s a non-winning position, because you're put into a position where the board of directors, if you’re lucky, or your CTO or your CIO asks, "How much money do you need to secure this organization?"

That's horrible, and no matter what you say, you lose. If you say nothing, you lose. If you have $10 million, a billion dollars, there's no amount of money you can spend to make your company completely secure.

Acceptable risk

So what are you aiming for? You're aiming for a level of acceptable risk. Well, acceptable risk of what and how and how much you’re aiming for. It’s not just acceptable risk. We’re looking at acceptable risk from a security perspective, but we need to incorporate the fact that we're going to get owned.

We need to get out of our ivory towers and we need to start thinking about the fact that attacks happen and insiders happen. There are things that are going to transpire that are beyond our control and things that we cannot plan for.

Technology will fail. People and processes will fail. Our own technologies, our own minds will fail us. Our best friends will fail us. People get tempted. This is a human nature that the weakest element will always be a human being, and there's no patch for that.

So how do we move and get back to business as usual? How we get back to being a resilient business. That’s a cool concept -- that I have enterprise resiliency.

Gardner: This makes great sense to me, because we’ve been talking, over the past several years, about how security needs to be applied to different parts of the organization holistically and needs to be thought of in advance, be built in, and become part of a lifecycle.

But it makes double sense to me to expand the purview of security. It really is in making sure that there's performance resiliency, failover resiliency, backup and recovery resiliency, and data backup and duplication resiliency. So why not look at it through the resiliency lens? It makes a great deal of sense.

Los: Absolutely, and that’s exactly where this is coming from. I’ve actually given a series of talks and called it the introduction of Chief Chaos Officer. It’s not an actual role you’re going to see on monster.com, but it’s just a concept. It’s kind of like the aging Killcraft, a Chaos Monkey thing from Netflix.

Can you, as an organization, get comfortable with the fact that things will fail? In the talk that I gave, it comes from the perspective of you’ve got a lot of great security technology. You've probably got full disk encryption. You back up. You have firewalls, redundant networks, and all these things that you do.

You have procedures that you’re supposed to follow in the red book, a big red binder that sits on your incident response handler's desk, and you have all these things that are supposed to be followed.

Your people are trained, and your developers are supposedly writing better source code. These are all things that we can test through penetration testing, which means on Sunday between 7:00 p.m. and Monday 3:00 a.m. on the following four IPs, but only when we’re ready.

No patch for the human

nd it’s like, okay, we've tested ourselves, we’re confident that we’re secure. I'm making kind of a scrunchy face, because that’s not really what this means. I've worked with folks who are red-team testers. I've yet to meet a red team that's failed, because, as I said, there's no patch for the human.

When you can’t penetrate a system or an organization via a new Zero-day, you'll walk in through the front door by walking and carrying flowers from the CEO's wife or something, and you'll own the organization that way.

But the question isn’t whether you'll be owned or not. What happens next is the big question, and it encompasses things like how good is your PR strategy. Do you have all the legal pieces in place? When your backup system fails or your entire data center gets wiped out by Hurricane Katrina, in a worst-case scenario, do you just sort of throw up your hands and go, "Well, that stinks? Well, we were in the cloud." Oh, your cloud just got wiped out. Now what?

Gardner: I've been speaking with a number of folks lately who hold the opinion that, at least for small-to-medium sized businesses (SMBs), going to the cloud can improve their security and resiliency sufficiently to make it a no-brainer. For enterprises, it might be a longer haul and there might be more complications and issues to manage.

Do you agree with that that the SMB can outsource some of this resiliency to the cloud provider who needs to do it and has the resources and experience to do it better than the SMBs do?

Los: There's a number of SMBs that can greatly benefit from the fact that good security talent is expensive and good security talent that can actually work towards a more resilient, more secure enterprise is very difficult to come by. It’s becoming scarce.

So small companies do the best they can with what they have their hands on. And there's certainly a ton of benefit to be gained from going to a shared model like a cloud. Does it raise the bar for everybody? I can’t say yes. On the whole, do I believe it raises the bar? Absolutely. Let's take the angle of threat intelligence.

I'm a small entity with five IP addresses on the Internet. How do I know what bad guys look like? If I have my five IP addresses in a public cloud some place, that public cloud is attacked billions of times a day and probably subscribes to numerous threat-intelligence services. They know exactly what to look for. And if they don’t, they can find out pretty quickly. They probably have a ton of resources from the security perspective.

Do I think it’s better? Absolutely. SMBs have a lot to gain by taking that step. You have to be intelligent about it. You can’t just say, "I'm going to move to the cloud and I'll be secure." Let’s be realistic about it. Get a partner that will get you there. Do due diligence on the partner that you’re choosing to work with. You still can’t run into the water with your eyes closed, but I think there's a lot of benefit to be had, absolutely.

Gardner: And as we’re learning more about the HP Converged Cloud, it’s a cloud of clouds. You have hybrid delivery. You might have a variety of sources for applications and services. You might have data in a variety of sources across a variety of organizations, running from on-premises to managed hosting to multiple cloud and SaaS providers.

Is there a way that, in addition to the security that's going on within those organizations, you can add more security at that converged cloud layer, particularly when you’re converging network storage, workload provisioning, governance, and so forth. What’s the add-on value that the HP Converged Cloud can bring resiliency-wise?

Choice, consistency, confidence

Los: Our Converged Cloud strategy focuses on three very simple words: choice, consistency, and confidence. We’re focusing on consistency and confidence here and perhaps a little bit of choice as well.

What we’re saying is that because we focus on OpenStack, because we’ve chosen to build our platform completely on OpenStack, because we’re building across a single model, a single way of operating, as [HP CEO] Meg Whitman said at Discover in June. You can build a single security operating model and you'll be able to implement it across your private, public, and hybrid models.

I don’t think it’s realistic to say every company will have a public cloud-only presence, just as I don’t think it’s realistic to say companies won’t have a public cloud presence. Most organizations will be a combination of on-premise IT, private cloud, virtual private cloud, and public cloud, all of that somehow sharing space and workload, bursting out to each other when necessary.

As I said systems fail, clouds fail, everything fails. So when we think about, and we’ve had this on our converged cloud chat, when things fail, you have to start architecting for failure and resiliency.

Because of this architecture that we’ve had, if you choose to get one other partner to back up what you have with us, pick a partner that's got the same OpenStack platform and the same models. It’s not going to be hard. There are lots of them out there.

OpenStack is a big platform. You should be able to build once, package once, deploy many times. This saves on manpower, on cost, and on having to redevelop the security wheel over and over and over again. That provides unbelievable amounts of flexibility of what you can do with your enterprise.

When one cloud or a connectivity to one cloud fails, or maybe not fails, but you get attacked in one position, you can bring up other capacity to compensate for that. That's where the true value of cloud comes in. It’s elastic computing. It’s not a marketing buzzword.

Gardner: We’re seeing a lot of highly virtualized environments. We’re talking about virtualized server instances, workloads, and network, storage. Disaster recovery (DR) technologies have evolved to the point where we're mirroring and moving entire data centers virtually from one location to another, if there's a resiliency issue like a natural disaster or a security or cyber attack that impacts an electric grid or something along those lines.

Is there a sort of a tipping point that we’re at, when it comes to higher levels of virtualization, some of the DR speeds, working with de-duplication and reducing the amount that needs to be moved in these instances, that gives us this higher level of security, simply because of the mobility in which we can now exercise for vast amounts of data and applications?

Los: I believe so. Do I have an answer for that that’s clear and crisp? No, I don’t know, and I saw a lot of that fantastic stuff. One of the things that caught my attention is we’ve broken the 100-terabyte-an-hour backup barrier. That blows my mind. I used to work in IT when we were lucky to get 100 gigs an hour and I remember 100 megabytes an hour being a challenge on those giant DLT tapes sometimes over networks.

The idea that we can take an entire cloud and because of data de-duplication, because of the way we move workloads and policies all in one fell swoop, and the way we package things once and move them, as a model, rather than everything together, moving metadata rather than the actual data, it gives us the ability to move things.

One thing that everybody needs to think about is what is this doing for our bandwidth requirements. Bandwidth is a silent thing nobody really thinks about. I've had this discussion with our networking folks. People are building clouds all over the place now and that's great, but it’s really easy to get out to a vendor, to get out to a public cloud or whatever, amass an absolute metric ton of data, and then say, "I want to move." How are you going to take your data from there to there? That’s a big question.

You need to do your homework ahead of time, make sure you know what you’re getting into, and make sure you know what technologies are being supported.

You may also be interested in:

More Stories By Dana Gardner

At Interarbor Solutions, we create the analysis and in-depth podcasts on enterprise software and cloud trends that help fuel the social media revolution. As a veteran IT analyst, Dana Gardner moderates discussions and interviews get to the meat of the hottest technology topics. We define and forecast the business productivity effects of enterprise infrastructure, SOA and cloud advances. Our social media vehicles become conversational platforms, powerfully distributed via the BriefingsDirect Network of online media partners like ZDNet and IT-Director.com. As founder and principal analyst at Interarbor Solutions, Dana Gardner created BriefingsDirect to give online readers and listeners in-depth and direct access to the brightest thought leaders on IT. Our twice-monthly BriefingsDirect Analyst Insights Edition podcasts examine the latest IT news with a panel of analysts and guests. Our sponsored discussions provide a unique, deep-dive focus on specific industry problems and the latest solutions. This podcast equivalent of an analyst briefing session -- made available as a podcast/transcript/blog to any interested viewer and search engine seeker -- breaks the mold on closed knowledge. These informational podcasts jump-start conversational evangelism, drive traffic to lead generation campaigns, and produce strong SEO returns. Interarbor Solutions provides fresh and creative thinking on IT, SOA, cloud and social media strategies based on the power of thoughtful content, made freely and easily available to proactive seekers of insights and information. As a result, marketers and branding professionals can communicate inexpensively with self-qualifiying readers/listeners in discreet market segments. BriefingsDirect podcasts hosted by Dana Gardner: Full turnkey planning, moderatiing, producing, hosting, and distribution via blogs and IT media partners of essential IT knowledge and understanding.

@ThingsExpo Stories
What happens when the different parts of a vehicle become smarter than the vehicle itself? As we move toward the era of smart everything, hundreds of entities in a vehicle that communicate with each other, the vehicle and external systems create a need for identity orchestration so that all entities work as a conglomerate. Much like an orchestra without a conductor, without the ability to secure, control, and connect the link between a vehicle’s head unit, devices, and systems and to manage the ...
What are the successful IoT innovations from emerging markets? What are the unique challenges and opportunities from these markets? How did the constraints in connectivity among others lead to groundbreaking insights? In her session at @ThingsExpo, Carmen Feliciano, a Principal at AMDG, will answer all these questions and share how you can apply IoT best practices and frameworks from the emerging markets to your own business.
More and more brands have jumped on the IoT bandwagon. We have an excess of wearables – activity trackers, smartwatches, smart glasses and sneakers, and more that track seemingly endless datapoints. However, most consumers have no idea what “IoT” means. Creating more wearables that track data shouldn't be the aim of brands; delivering meaningful, tangible relevance to their users should be. We're in a period in which the IoT pendulum is still swinging. Initially, it swung toward "smart for smar...
In past @ThingsExpo presentations, Joseph di Paolantonio has explored how various Internet of Things (IoT) and data management and analytics (DMA) solution spaces will come together as sensor analytics ecosystems. This year, in his session at @ThingsExpo, Joseph di Paolantonio from DataArchon, will be adding the numerous Transportation areas, from autonomous vehicles to “Uber for containers.” While IoT data in any one area of Transportation will have a huge impact in that area, combining sensor...
Machine Learning helps make complex systems more efficient. By applying advanced Machine Learning techniques such as Cognitive Fingerprinting, wind project operators can utilize these tools to learn from collected data, detect regular patterns, and optimize their own operations. In his session at 18th Cloud Expo, Stuart Gillen, Director of Business Development at SparkCognition, discussed how research has demonstrated the value of Machine Learning in delivering next generation analytics to impr...
Successful digital transformation requires new organizational competencies and capabilities. Research tells us that the biggest impediment to successful transformation is human; consequently, the biggest enabler is a properly skilled and empowered workforce. In the digital age, new individual and collective competencies are required. In his session at 19th Cloud Expo, Bob Newhouse, CEO and founder of Agilitiv, will draw together recent research and lessons learned from emerging and established ...
The best way to leverage your Cloud Expo presence as a sponsor and exhibitor is to plan your news announcements around our events. The press covering Cloud Expo and @ThingsExpo will have access to these releases and will amplify your news announcements. More than two dozen Cloud companies either set deals at our shows or have announced their mergers and acquisitions at Cloud Expo. Product announcements during our show provide your company with the most reach through our targeted audiences.
Amazon has gradually rolled out parts of its IoT offerings, but these are just the tip of the iceberg. In addition to optimizing their backend AWS offerings, Amazon is laying the ground work to be a major force in IoT - especially in the connected home and office. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Chris Kocher, founder and managing director of Grey Heron, explained how Amazon is extending its reach to become a major force in IoT by building on its dominant cloud IoT platform, its Dash Button strat...
@ThingsExpo has been named the Top 5 Most Influential M2M Brand by Onalytica in the ‘Machine to Machine: Top 100 Influencers and Brands.' Onalytica analyzed the online debate on M2M by looking at over 85,000 tweets to provide the most influential individuals and brands that drive the discussion. According to Onalytica the "analysis showed a very engaged community with a lot of interactive tweets. The M2M discussion seems to be more fragmented and driven by some of the major brands present in the...
We are reaching the end of the beginning with WebRTC, and real systems using this technology have begun to appear. One challenge that faces every WebRTC deployment (in some form or another) is identity management. For example, if you have an existing service – possibly built on a variety of different PaaS/SaaS offerings – and you want to add real-time communications you are faced with a challenge relating to user management, authentication, authorization, and validation. Service providers will w...
DevOps is being widely accepted (if not fully adopted) as essential in enterprise IT. But as Enterprise DevOps gains maturity, expands scope, and increases velocity, the need for data-driven decisions across teams becomes more acute. DevOps teams in any modern business must wrangle the ‘digital exhaust’ from the delivery toolchain, "pervasive" and "cognitive" computing, APIs and services, mobile devices and applications, the Internet of Things, and now even blockchain. In this power panel at @...
SYS-CON Media announced today that @WebRTCSummit Blog, the largest WebRTC resource in the world, has been launched. @WebRTCSummit Blog offers top articles, news stories, and blog posts from the world's well-known experts and guarantees better exposure for its authors than any other publication. @WebRTCSummit Blog can be bookmarked ▸ Here @WebRTCSummit conference site can be bookmarked ▸ Here
SYS-CON Events announced today that Streamlyzer will exhibit at the 19th International Cloud Expo, which will take place on November 1–3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Streamlyzer is a powerful analytics for video streaming service that enables video streaming providers to monitor and analyze QoE (Quality-of-Experience) from end-user devices in real time.
You have great SaaS business app ideas. You want to turn your idea quickly into a functional and engaging proof of concept. You need to be able to modify it to meet customers' needs, and you need to deliver a complete and secure SaaS application. How could you achieve all the above and yet avoid unforeseen IT requirements that add unnecessary cost and complexity? You also want your app to be responsive in any device at any time. In his session at 19th Cloud Expo, Mark Allen, General Manager of...
One of biggest questions about Big Data is “How do we harness all that information for business use quickly and effectively?” Geographic Information Systems (GIS) or spatial technology is about more than making maps, but adding critical context and meaning to data of all types, coming from all different channels – even sensors. In his session at @ThingsExpo, William (Bill) Meehan, director of utility solutions for Esri, will take a closer look at the current state of spatial technology and ar...
SYS-CON Events announced today that SoftNet Solutions will exhibit at the 19th International Cloud Expo, which will take place on November 1–3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. SoftNet Solutions specializes in Enterprise Solutions for Hadoop and Big Data. It offers customers the most open, robust, and value-conscious portfolio of solutions, services, and tools for the shortest route to success with Big Data. The unique differentiator is the ability to architect and ...
The IoT industry is now at a crossroads, between the fast-paced innovation of technologies and the pending mass adoption by global enterprises. The complexity of combining rapidly evolving technologies and the need to establish practices for market acceleration pose a strong challenge to global enterprises as well as IoT vendors. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Clark Smith, senior product manager for Numerex, will discuss how Numerex, as an experienced, established IoT provider, has embraced a ...
Cloud based infrastructure deployment is becoming more and more appealing to customers, from Fortune 500 companies to SMEs due to its pay-as-you-go model. Enterprise storage vendors are able to reach out to these customers by integrating in cloud based deployments; this needs adaptability and interoperability of the products confirming to cloud standards such as OpenStack, CloudStack, or Azure. As compared to off the shelf commodity storage, enterprise storages by its reliability, high-availabil...
Donna Yasay, President of HomeGrid Forum, today discussed with a panel of technology peers how certification programs are at the forefront of interoperability, and the answer for vendors looking to keep up with today's growing industry for smart home innovation. "To ensure multi-vendor interoperability, accredited industry certification programs should be used for every product to provide credibility and quality assurance for retail and carrier based customers looking to add ever increasing num...
In the next forty months – just over three years – businesses will undergo extraordinary changes. The exponential growth of digitization and machine learning will see a step function change in how businesses create value, satisfy customers, and outperform their competition. In the next forty months companies will take the actions that will see them get to the next level of the game called Capitalism. Or they won’t – game over. The winners of today and tomorrow think differently, follow different...