AWS Security Assessment & Compliance

With continued excellence in providing Cloud Services, AWS remains the market leader in cloud infrastructure. Having served business giants globally, it is committed to providing confidentiality, integrity, and availability to the entire Cloud System. Having the security of the system and data ranked as the highest priority, AWS provides its customers with different tools to help keep their AWS accounts and applications secure. AWS’s well-architected framework provides a flexible and secure cloud computing environment at all enterprise levels.

Kinds of Security
AWS proposes a shared responsibility model where, while the security of the cloud lies with AWS to accomplish, security of the content in the cloud remains an organizational job. This means that AWS keeps a check that only secured and trusted data enters the cloud, but what that data actually is, remains the authority of the organization’s leadership.

AWS is Service Organization Control (SOC2) and International Organization for Standardization (ISO) Certified and maintains compliance via tools like AWS audit manager. Audit reports are shared through AWS Artifact.

User’s Role in Maintaining Cloud Security
Safeguarding business and organizational sensitive data stored in the cloud is a joint responsibility of AWS and the customer. AWS provides a robust infrastructure and various tools to protect and monitor the asset. At the same time, it suggests a few guidelines and rules for the customers to follow, so as to ensure a healthy and safe environment.

  • All passwords should be as per the industry standard
  • Multi-factor authorization
  • Implement AWS Identity and Access Management (IAM)set up and delete the account’s access key using IAM root panel.
  • Enable governance, compliance, risk, and operational auditing using CloudTrail.
  • Use AWS Control Tower to configure multi-account complex environments.

AWS cannot see your data
AWS security rules enforce the organization’s ownership and control over the asset stored in the cloud. AWS Cloud Security System is designed in a way that most of its part is maintained by machines using automation. It has the philosophy of “keeping humans away from data”. The places needing human intervention require a standard level of security and compliance check before proceeding.

  • Humans get admin access to the data only after thorough screening levels.
  • Humans must use VPN, multi-factor authentication, device certificates and precise logging procedures.

AWS Security Tools

AWS Security tools are basically divided into the following two categories:

  • Account Security Tools: To ensure secure identity and access management.
  • Application Security Tools: To ensure secure application and architecture.

Account Security Tools
AWS Identity and Access Management (IAM): It is used to create users and roles granting access to particular resources. At all times least privilege is assigned to each user and role, this keeps a check on the security breaches.

Amazon GuardDuty: It uses machine learning techniques to identify suspicious activities in the AWS environment. GuardDuty utilizes malicious IP addresses and domains to point out unidentified access. It can point out if EC2 instances are serving malware and detect anomalies in the access pattern.

Amazon Macie: It shields the sensitive data in the AWS S3 bucket. It locates sensitive data and keeps a consistent eye on the bucket. Maice also sends an alert in case of any malicious activity like unauthorized access to the bucket.

AWS Config: It monitors resource configuration with a continuous check to keep a historical record of all the changes made to resources. It also validates resources against the defined configuration.

AWS CloudTrail: It keeps track of all the activities done in the AWS environment. Maintaining a history of all the API calls and actions taken by a user, CloudTrail keeps a check on the unauthorized traffic to the workload.

Security Hub: AWS Security Hub conjuncts output from all the Security Tools and presents a consolidated view of the entire AWS environment’s security structure. It can also include data from third-party security tools.

Application Security Tools
Amazon Inspector: This is a detection and monitoring service tool. It makes sure that the AWS workload adheres to security best practices, all through its lifetime. This security assessment service generates a detailed list of security findings based on severity.

AWS Shield: Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) is a cloud attack where the application is overwhelmed with fake data thereby resulting in downtime of the website and server. AWS Shield is the protection of all AWS Services against DDoS.

AWS Web Application Firewall: This is a firewall for AWS Infrastructure protection. It basically sits in front of your application, and APIs and safeguards AWS against a span of common attacks. Based on the predefined rules it blocks all the nasty traffic that hits.

AWS Secrets Manager: This service lets the user protect, manage, and rotate the secrets needed to run the AWS workload. Sensitive information like database credentials, API keys, certificates, and tokens are stored here and easily retrieved using API calls. The Secrets Manager helps implement compliance requirements by secretly rotating these credentials using in-built integration with Amazon RDS, Amazon Redshift, and Amazon DocumentDB.

TechVedika’s Case Study

TechVedika implemented Security Assessment & Compliance Services for multiple enterprise clients. For a large elderly care enterprise,

  • We conducted a Security assessment on AWS using Security Hub.
  • Collected all the CIS Benchmark items reported and for each of the issues we put remedies in place.
  • Conducted docker vulnerability checks and fixed Dockerfiles.
  • Included security checks as part of the CI/CD process.
  • Implemented Amazon Inspector is an automated security assessment service to improve security and compliance by automatically assessing applications for exposure, vulnerabilities, and deviations from best practices.
  • Used Macie’s alerts to filter the AWS Management Console and sent information to Amazon EventBridge for easy integration with existing workflow so that they can be used in combination with AWS services, such as AWS Step Functions to take automated remediation actions.
  • Used Amazon GuardDuty is a continuous security monitoring service to analyze and process data sources, VPC Flow Logs, AWS CloudTrail management event logs, and CloudTrail S3 data event logs.
  • Used Web Application Firewall (WAF) to protect web applications or APIs against common web exploits and bots that may affect availability, compromise security, or consume excessive resources.

Conclusion
AWS offers a wide range of security and compliance tools to safeguard the workload against threats. It becomes important to understand them and deploy them wisely for your business. Come to Tech Vedika, where our vast experience and expertise helps us plan and manage AWS configurations right from the very beginning so that your business gets a head start.

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