Cloud incident response frameworks help organizations automate essential security tasks and streamline processes. They also help incident managers track progress and identify gaps in security capabilities that can be improved for future attacks.
As cloud infrastructure evolves, incident responders must continually iterate their cloud security practices. It helps them keep up with the latest cyberattacks and learn how to thwart them.
Detecting suspicious activity is a core part of the cloud incident response framework. It involves monitoring events, identifying suspicious or unauthorized actions, and escalating to security staff to ensure that systems are safe.
Detection is essential to the cloud incident response framework because it protects systems from attackers. In addition, that data is backed up in case of a disaster. It also helps organizations recover quicker and more effectively from an attack.
Securing and resolving incidents is even more critical as cloud computing becomes more commonplace. But implementing cloud incident response procedures and processes has unique challenges that must be addressed to minimize production disruption.
For example, different jurisdictional policies may require organizations to report incidents differently. It could impact how they share information with affected entities and make it difficult to coordinate efforts.
A key aspect of cloud incident response is the identification phase, which monitors network and system logs to detect unauthorized or malicious actions in real-time. In addition, it includes automated analysis and network traffic detection tools, which help detect suspicious or abusive behavior before it has time to escalate to higher-level resources.
Detecting and investigating incidents in the cloud requires careful consideration of all aspects of the environment, including proper configuration, visibility and access rights, and alert reporting. These steps ensure security teams have the tools, access, and resources to respond quickly.
Regarding cloud incident response, several different frameworks are available to organizations. However, choosing the proper framework for your organization depends on a few factors.
A cloud incident response framework generally covers plans, processes, and controls to help organizations prepare for, detect and respond to incidents. A successful cloud IR program includes tooling and controls implementation; staff training on cloud services, security capabilities, and threats; and creating playbooks.
Managing the volume of data involved in an event is one of the most challenging parts of cloud IR. It can be not easy, mainly when data is sourced from third-party cloud service providers.
It can lead to challenges in storing and accessing data promptly. In addition, coordinating responses with stakeholders can be complicated when information is sourced from multiple sources.
To improve the coordination of responses, governments should promote mandatory reporting standards for incidents that may affect systems critical to society or the cloud provider. It should enable close-to-real-time situational awareness for all concerned parties and allow for effective threat-hunting and incident-response coordination.
As cloud computing continues to expand, more and more business systems are operated within a cloud environment. These environments comprise multiple providers’ networks, storage, virtualization, and management software.
Eradication is the final phase in the incident response framework and involves removing malware from affected systems. It also includes restoring the affected system to its normal operating state.
Historically, this has involved time-consuming manual processes that require bootable USB sticks or shipping the device to a secure location. As a result, it can be a costly and tedious process for organizations.
However, cloud-native investigation platforms can automate capturing, processing, and analyzing complete cloud volumes without impacting workloads. They can also automatically alert IT staff to suspicious activities in real time with a triggered metric-based alert or by sending notifications.
To prevent this from happening, businesses should make sure that their cloud-based storage accounts can provide secure access for IT staff and security teams while at the same time protecting customer data from malicious actors. It can be done by creating most minor privilege accounts, enabling multifactor authentication, and ensuring that write-once storage is in place.
The cloud incident response framework is a set of guidelines organizations can use to prepare, detect, analyze, and recover from cyberattacks. It is similar to traditional incident response plans but incorporates the unique challenges of the cloud environment.
Unlike traditional on-prem systems, cloud environments house large amounts of data that are not easily accessible to security staff. As a result, it requires a flexible approach to standard operating procedures, especially when establishing access rights and logging requirements for responding teams.
CIR teams must also account for varying log retention periods by the different cloud services they use. It can affect the availability of substantial evidence needed for the investigation.
As part of the recovery phase, incident teams must restore affected systems and bring them back online. It involves restoring backup files, reinstalling application software from known-good media, and changing passwords.
During this stage, it’s essential to determine what happened and build an incident timeline. It can help identify what processes worked well and what didn’t, and how staff roles performed. It can also help ensure that a similar event doesn’t occur again. It can reduce regulatory fines, reputational damage, and financial loss.