3 Consequences of Cloud Misconfiguration

Cloud misconfigurations—gaps or errors that create system vulnerabilities—are extremely common, especially with popular cloud platforms like AWS leaving the responsibility to buyers. Cloud configuration is no simple task, even for those with experience. It goes hand in hand with an organization’s security and performance, setting up proper access controls, data sharing limitations, audit logs, and more. It’s a complicated and error-prone process that’s vital to get right. Here’s why.

Consequence #1: Increased Risk

Misconfigurations leave organizations open and vulnerable to cyber-attacks. They are the root cause of most security incidents and events. In fact, modern attackers will specifically scan for and target organizations with system misconfigurations. It provides them with a foot in the door toward what they really want—full system access. A U.S. Senior Administration Official stated that the Russians’ latest hacking attempt on the U.S. “could have been prevented with baseline cybersecurity practices,” which would include continuous monitoring and penetration testing to identify misconfigurations so they could be corrected before enabling an attack. Beyond initial cloud misconfiguration, issues only grow as more programs are added, all requiring additional configurations. In other words, it’s an ongoing job.

Consequence #2: Lowered Performance

Misconfigurations sabotage the resilience and performance of your cloud. They are the main cause of service disruptions and outages. Infrastructure company, Dyn, unintentionally shutting down Verizon, Spectrum, and other large service providers across the U.S., a six-hour Facebook outage that caused a user-data-leak scare, among plenty more, are all examples of outages caused by a “simple misconfiguration.” AWS users—who are responsible for the configuration of their environment—often make the common mistake of setting up multiple teams on the same EC2 service which can cause instances to fail when teams simultaneously scale up. This overloads the system limit, resulting in unplanned downtime. Small or large, no organization is immune to misconfigurations and the issues they create.

Consequence #3: Increased Cost

It’s simple: increased risk and lowered performance lead to higher costs. There are several ways this could present itself:

  • Breach remediation
  • Cloud product turnover
  • Software pileup when using non-integrated cloud products (AWS, Azure, etc.)
  • Time spent troubleshooting
  • Loss of business due to poor performance or outages
  • Outsourcing for help

As stated previously, no organization is immune to misconfigurations or their repercussions, but they can be prevented. Integrated cloud services are safer because an experienced team and AI-assisted software completes the initial configuration process, plus manages your system on an ongoing basis to secure your data and applications. To learn more or speak with one of our Solutions Engineers about using an integrated cloud, contact us at info@oasisdiscovery.com or fill out our simple contact form.