By 2020, nearly every business in this country is expected to have fully integrated the cloud into its day-to-day operations. That’s great for productivity and efficiency, but the prospect of so much data floating around in the cloud may seem daunting from the perspective of security. After all, how are CIOs and IT departments supposed to keep track of all the apps, cloud providers, and files employees are using? Enter the cloud access security broker, or CASB. A CASB is a control point to secure cloud services and typically unifies a number of security measures used across the cloud to make detection, management, and enforcement much easier to deploy and control.
Currently, only 5 percent of enterprises use a CASB (suggesting that the vast majority of enterprises still rely on a haphazard variety of cloud security measures or, possibly, outdated network security). By 2020 again, however, a whopping 85 percent of enterprises are expected to be using CASBs, according to Gartner.
Part of the reason CASB growth is expected to be so rapid is because the CASB is quickly modernizing and adapting to the modern technology many businesses already are or will be using. While some CASBs out there still rely on a slow, unstable network-based monitoring approach—which is essentially no different from the outdated perimeter security strategies that we’ve seen fail time and again—a CASB like Sookasa take advantage of the recently-matured SaaS industry and enable nearly real-time monitoring based entirely on APIs. This also allows secure use and monitoring of data wherever it goes, even if it’s outside the network, which is crucial as file sync-and-share solutions in the cloud become par for the course in the workplace.
So why do you need a CASB? It’s becoming clear that CASB is soon going to be the default means to maintaining security and perhaps the only effective solution as the cloud continues to grow.
What does a CASB do?
A CASB ensures that a business’ IT department has visibility into all cloud programs, apps, files, data, and users anyone at the business is employing. Having a CASB is important when it comes to reigning in shadow IT; currently, nearly 80 percent of employees admit to using personal mobile devices for work purposes. What’s more, data is proliferating in the cloud at such a rapid pace that businesses are having trouble keeping up. They don’t know where everything is located, who has access to what, and what confidential information is (intentionally or unintentionally) being shared. This overflow of information and the use of unmanaged devices are a large part what’s contributing to the headache of cloud security in the first place—and why the widespread introduction of CASBs is so necessary.
In short, a CASB provides a suite of security functions that work across platforms and cloud providers but are all managed from a single access point. These CASB functions include:
- Data loss prevention, or DLP, which finds and classifies a company’s most sensitive data across files, devices, and cloud providers in order to—you guessed it—prevent data loss. Sookasa’s DLP product, File Scan, enables team administrators to quickly search all files across all platforms for sensitive info like SSNs, credit card numbers, or even custom search terms relating to confidential projects.
- File-level encryption, which secures data before it ever reaches the cloud, maintaining its security at rest on servers and when synced to mobile devices. With other providers, this is often layered on as a separate solution, but Sookasa’s approach is fully integrated, allowing your teams to continue using the cloud providers they know best without disrupting their workflow.
- Two-factor authentication, which enhances the security of user identification by requiring information beyond the often-insecure username and password combination.
- Single sign-on, which enables the authorization of a user and grants access to multiple applications using a single identity provider.
- Access control, which allows administrators to revoke access to individual files, specific mobile devices, or users in the event of employee termination or device loss or theft.
- Auditing, which lets administrators quickly check that their team is using and sharing data on SaaS solutions securely and take action on unauthorized activity. Sookasa’s Audit product provides easy-to-use behavior maps and a complete history of how your team’s files are being accessed—even for data synced to devices.
- Enforcement, which grants administrators the ability to monitor activity in real time, detect sharing patterns, and identify anomalies.
What makes Sookasa’s CASB solution different?
Sookasa is proud to be a fully-integrated CASB offering a holistic suite of all the solutions listed above. When you deploy a CASB like Sookasa, team administrators gain access to a Dashboard that provides a site to monitor all activity across all your team’s accounts, regardless of what cloud providers or platforms they’re using. A CASB leverages providers’ and platforms’ APIs to establish this access, giving administrators free reign do all the things they need to identify files, classify them according to their needs, recognize anomalous activity, and thwart unauthorized actions before a data breach can occur. Using a CASB eliminates the need to monitor a separate security vantage point for each individual platform a team may be using for all of its day-to-day functions.
Sookasa works with the APIs of Dropbox, Google Drive, Office 365, Box, OneDrive, Slack, Salesforce, GitHub, and Zendesk, meaning that whatever platform your teams are using, their security will be in good hands.
Not only does a CASB make security easier and more transparent, it also frees up time and resources to streamline activity, increase productivity, and provide better customer service. Relying on spread-out security options or on-premise measures instead of a CASB leaves files vulnerable largely due to human error and the sheer inability to know just where everything is located and who’s accessing what. The way we work has simply become so vast that new technology is absolutely essential to corral it. That’s where CASBs come in—and why CASBs are poised to quickly become every enterprise’s go-to security solution.
Where can I learn more about a CASB?
Read our whitepaper on how a CASB works here.
Read our whitepaper on encryption and security here.