Security Biggest Barrier to Cloud Adoption for Over Half of UK Firms

Over half (58%) of UK businesses have cited security concerns as the biggest barrier to public cloud adoption, according to a new study from Centrify.

The survey of 200 business decision makers in large and medium-sized enterprises in the UK also found that over a third (35%) who have adopted cloud are less than 80% confident it is completely secure.

Additionally, more than a quarter (28%) of those surveyed revealed that their organization had been targeted by a cloud hacking attempt since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic.

In regard to their companies’ security weaknesses, close to half (45%) of decision makers pinpointed the growth in machine identities and service accounts, such as those used by servers and applications, as their biggest exposure point.

Worryingly, 31% of business decision makers admitted their development teams are more interested in getting around security than building it into the DevOps pipeline, raising concerns over the ability of many companies to combat cyber-attacks in the future.

Kamel Heus, VP EMEA for Centrify, commented: “Adapting to the COVID-19 pandemic has been a bumpy ride for many businesses and, in most cases, companies have had to adopt the public cloud in at least some capacity due to the level of scalability, availability and efficiency it provides for distributed workforces.

“Whilst the common misperception is that cloud security is quite different to that of on-premises infrastructure, it is by no means less secure if common security protocols are followed, and security controls are applied.

“One core challenge posed by digital transformation is accurately verifying human and machine identities before granting access to systems, applications and other high value targets. Therefore, adopting cloud-ready privileged access management software is essential in protecting access to workloads in the public cloud, by granting access only when a requestor’s identity has been properly authenticated.”

While cloud adoption has grown since the shift to remote working as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, in many cases, security has not adapted. Last year, a survey by Trend Micro revealed that nearly half of UK IT leaders have not updated their security to account for their move to cloud environments.

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