To the Cloud: Cloud Powering an Enterprise

Saturday, March 10, 2012

Ben Rothke

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A recent search on Amazon showed an amazing 1,460 titles on cloud computing.  It is no secret that cloud computing is a technology that has arrived.

But with all the excitement around cloud computing, it is difficult to filter through the hype. 

For those looking to get a clear understanding of this monstrosity called cloud computing, To the Cloud: Cloud Powering an Enterprise provides the reader with a detailed overview of what cloud computing is, and what it is not.

While the book is authored by 3 technical Microsoft staffers; it is overall a vendor agnostic reference.  Albeit the epilogue does use a case study of the Windows Azure cloud platform.

In fewer than 100 pages, the books 4 parts consist of sections on:

  • Explore - understand the promise and challenges of cloud computing
  • Envision -  details how cloud computing can transform an organization
  • Enable -  details the necessary resources and skills for en effective cloud computing initiative
  • Execute – creating the design, development and operation of cloud computing

While not specifically a security book, the authors note in chapter 3 that moving services to a public cloud means potentially increasing your business exposure to malicious attacks. 

I would take note that it is not a potential increase, rather a definite increase.  The authors write that it is important to determine how well a cloud provider handles both technical and legal issues, in addition to other security requirements.

Chapter 4 notes the importance of a penetration test for any cloud-based application.  It also stresses the need for comprehensive logging and monitoring.

For those looking for a succinct tactical introduction to cloud computing, To the Cloud: Cloud Powering an Enterprise is an excellent place to start.

Cross-posted from RSA

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