In a modern-day multi-regulatory environment, staying compliant is not just a smart business practice, but a necessity. Just like cloud security, compliance is never a one-and-done process rather it should be a non-stop approach. The real challenge here is achieving and maintaining compliance in a dynamic cloud environment, yet not an impossible task!  

Without the support of a cloud managed services provider, you may find achieving and maintaining compliance a time-consuming and complex process. However, with services like continuous compliance scanning and visibility, you can easily streamline the process, prevent any gaps, minimize the complexities, and ultimately prevent your cloud infrastructure from falling out of compliance.  

In this blog, you will learn more about continuous cloud compliance, the reasons why it’s essential, and the best practices to achieve continuous compliance.  

Understanding Continuous Cloud Compliance

Continuous cloud compliance is an ongoing process of monitoring cloud assets to detect risks and ensure compliance with regulatory security standards that apply to your organization. It is about developing a strategy that constantly reviews your compliance posture to ensure that you are proactively prepared for future threats rather than responding reactively to security risks. With continuous cloud compliance, your organization can better manage the security process and ensure regulatory compliance across your applications and workloads.

Why is continuous cloud compliance significant for enterprises?

Compliance through industry regulations alone cannot protect businesses from security breaches. Changes in the cloud infrastructure are rapid, so an automatic and sustainable approach to ensure cloud compliance must be in place which also acts as a resilient barrier to your agile environment. Let’s look into some of the benefits of implementing a continuous cloud compliance process.

  • Meet regulatory compliance requirements
    Violations of regulatory compliance controls can incur massive fines and can shackle the reputation of your organization. By proactively monitoring your organization’s workloads you can ensure real-time visibility, closing the gap between risk detection and remediation processes. With continuous cloud compliance, you can ensure your organization adheres to the regulatory standards for safeguarding data and improving information security management. As a result, security compliance act as a “preventive security measure” for your business.  
  • Be always audit-ready
    By ensuring continuous compliance, you can reduce audit fatigue for your IT team, saving your organization from unforeseeable risks. It also accelerates the compliance management process with increased efficiency and enables uninterrupted operations. By maintaining ongoing compliance, you will be prepared to support compliance with very minimal effort.  
  • Boosts your organization’s reputation
    Continuous compliance can give your business a competitive advantage, especially in highly regulated industries. Your organization’s commitment to security and compliance and adherence to regulatory requirements is essential to gain the trust of your existing customers and attract new business opportunities.  

Best Practices to Achieve Continuous Cloud Compliance    

Here’s a quick list of common best practices that you can follow to ensure continuous cloud compliance.

Know your responsibility

Preparing for a compliance audit is a good job, so the idea of maintaining it permanently may seem overwhelming. Therefore, it can be comforting to see that some areas of cloud compliance are not your area of responsibility. As per the shared responsibility model, security is shared between the cloud service providers and the users.  

While public cloud service providers enable physical and administrative ‘security of the cloud’, you will be responsible for cloud service configuration, applications, and ‘security within the cloud’. However, not all organizations are aware of the shared model, and this can result in exposure to security gaps.

Continuously monitor resources and configurations

Ongoing risk assessment is key to remaining continuously compliant for which you need to continuously monitor the configuration and security information of your cloud environment to identify when configuration drifts, new threats appear, or any security gaps/non-compliant assets exist.  

Configure the alerts properly

Alerts are useful as long as you can follow them. They allow you to see abnormal behaviors that require further investigation in real-time. However, if they are not properly configured or too hard, your team will end up missing issues. It is ideal to prioritize and fine-tune your alerts specifically to your organization’s needs and monitor them in a timely manner so as to remain compliant.

Have an automated control system

A proper automated control system for maintaining continuous cloud compliance will help reduce the chances of human errors and also the complexity involved. Automation enables proactive remediations to maintain baseline cloud configuration and will automatically alert your team in the occurrence of any non-compliant vulnerabilities.

Ensure visibility

There is no easy way to ensure cloud compliance at the speed of your business progress. If a new server is launched, more employees will have access to the corporate systems and more data will be processed and stored. Hence, it is essential to ensure visibility in order to manage risks and meet the required compliance standards even as the business scales.  

Ignoring compliance requirements comes at a high cost and hence can’t be overlooked. Continuous cloud compliance is an achievable goal with a little preparation and dedication. As long as you know which compliance requirements you need to comply with, your warnings are adjusted and your security solutions can be measured, with which you can confidently say that you meet 24/365 compliance. Want to put an end to compliance complexities and audit fatigue? Contact us to know how we can support your team with your unique compliance and security requirements in the cloud.