Cloud levels the playing field

I was at the AWS Benelux Summit in The Hague last week. I particularly enjoyed Werner Vogel’s keynote speech and want to use this column to highlight three aspects of his keynote that I felt stood out.

There is no reason anymore, not to encrypt your data.

Amazon strongly believes in encrypting your data. In fact, Werner went as far as to state that he believes that in today’s age, and especially when you use AWS services, there is no reason not to encrypt your data anymore. And I, for one thing, think that there are plenty of reasons to always encrypt.

This is quite a paradigm shift for the common wisdom of about 8–10 years ago, when it was really common to only encrypt sensitive data and companies like Twitter kept pushing back on having https everywhere due to resource constraints.

At the Summit, Werner showcased AWS newest tools to enable data encryption at rest and in transit and to take care of requesting and renewing TLS Certificates without the need for any operational staff. Again Amazon managed to automate away a lot of the heavylifting.

Cloud has removed IT as a competitive advantage

This was another of Werners remarks during his keynote. The toolset that AWS makes available to everyone (at a price), is one that until recently was only available to companies that had large and well organized IT departments. These tools are now available for consumption by smaller organizations too. Put differently, to do a complex function like Machine Learning you no longer need a large IT staff team to take care of the server farm needed to do this.

Security is everyone’s job

I didn’t count, but I believe this was stressed over half a dozen times, and I want you to repeat after me: ‘Security is everyone’s job’. It is a good thing that everyone is able to benefit from the immense power of (AWS and other) cloud, but it means that security now becomes everyone’s job too.

Turning point?

For years security has been one of the top three reasons not to move to cloud yet. I believe that Amazon and others have done a tremendous job to show that security can benefit from the powers of the cloud too.

Again, according to Werner, security is now also one of the top reasons to move into the cloud.

Where does this leave me?

I’ve been a security specialist for most of my adult life. Now that everyone is going to perform my job, what is left for me?

To be honest I’m quite happy that simple operations will be taken out of my hands. But, no matter how well Amazon automates heavy lifting away and enables people to do the right thing, we have to walk a very long way before IT has become immune to security flaws.

As security specialists, it will become our role to enable everyone to do their security job. To allow them to safely play with plenty of rope to hang themselves with, while preventing them from shooting themselves in the foot.

The world will be a far better place when security expertise is no longer needed, until that time I’m unfortunately not worried about job security.

Bron: Blog Schuberg Philis