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How Secure Was the Cloud in 2012?

  By Allison Boccamazzo, TMCnet Web Editor

As 2012 came to an end, countless studies, surveys and predictions were thrown about from experts in the cloud space; however, real data-driven studies seem to be far and few between. That is exactly why Alert Logic, a partner of cloud hosting company Datapipe (News - Alert), differentiates itself as a hard source for information that can truly help shape the future of the cloud – or at least help sharpen an otherwise blurry picture.

In its latest 2012 Alert Logic Cloud Security Report, the company reveals interesting insight into what serves as one of if not the most critical aspect of the cloud – security. “It seems that most conversations about the benefits of moving to cloud hosting models eventually become security discussions, because many IT managers are not confident in cloud security,” elaborates partner Datapipe in a recent blog.

What makes Alert Logic’s reports different is that the company analyzes its customers’ intrusion detection data, looks at what kinds of threats they are expecting and finally uses this information to see what’s really going on in the cloud compared to other environments, Datapipe adds in the blog.

The report, which is released twice per year, found some repeating insights – for example, Web application attacks, such as SQL injection and cross-site scripting, are some of the biggest problems customers face – but it also identified new tools and tactics being used by criminals to launch attacks.

The report found that two-thirds of criminals are now turning to easily downloadable automated tools, such as Havij, one preferred by Internet hacker, Anonymous, the caped crusader of the Web who helped sensationalize and define hacker culture with a string of devised attacks last year.

The report also revealed that half of all customers experienced Web application attacks in 2012, with two-thirds of them being launched using such easily-available, automated tools – something that even less skilled attackers may begin trying to utilize. Additionally, while the occurrence of the types of attacks were similar for customers in on-premise vs. service provider environments, on-premise customers experienced each type of attack more frequently, as well as experienced a slightly broader range of attacks.

To learn more about the report’s results as well as see the report in full, click here.

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Edited by Brooke Neuman

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