Confluera: Nearly 2/3 of IT Professionals Identified Cyberthreats Designed to Target Cloud Services as Top Obstacle to Cloud Strategy
February 2022 by Confluera
Confluera released the findings of their latest research report, which explores how IT leaders detect, evaluate, and act against cybersecurity threats in today’s cloud environment. The study, 2022 Cloud Cybersecurity Survey Report, showcases the perspective of 200 U.S. IT leaders at medium to large sized organizations and how they are tackling the increasingly complex remote, cloud-centric IT security landscape.
Majority of organizations are accelerating their cloud adoption with 97% of IT leaders surveyed stating that their strategy includes the expansion of cloud deployments. The strategy includes expansion in scale and in many cases, the adoption of multiple platforms such as AWS, Google Cloud and Azure. This strategy is not without its challenges, however. Approximately, 63% of IT professionals identified cyberthreats designed to target cloud services as the top obstacle to their cloud strategy.
Cloud and multi-cloud adoption has greatly increased the workload of already burdened IT teams. Of the 200 IT leaders surveyed, only about half of the respondents said that they are adequately staffed to manage the frequency of alerts they receive. IT teams spend 54% of their time investigating security alerts, with over half of those alerts turning out to be false or benign alarms. As threats within the cloud proliferate, IT leaders are looking for solutions to help them quickly separate the signal from the noise so they can act on the real threats promptly. Some key findings of the survey as it relates to cloud deployments are below.
• More than 65% of IT leaders said cloud IaaS adoption (AWS, Azure, Google Cloud, etc.) was the primary contributor to their increased workload in 2021
• When asked what challenges were associated with adopting multiple cloud platforms,
o 69% said maintaining consistent cybersecurity coverage across all cloud infrastructures
o Nearly 50% said securing the resources to manage different cloud infrastructures
o Nearly 45% identified the difficulty detecting threats progressing from one cloud infrastructure to another
"While accelerated cloud adoption continues to be a critical element in adapting to the new way of doing business, it has strained IT leader’s ability to manage their workload,” said John Morgan, CEO of Confluera. “Organizations need to ensure proper people, processes, and tools are in place for the team to expand the complex cloud environments without sacrificing their attention to security.”
Morgan continued, “To make matters worse, the Great Resignation has demonstrated the burnout that workers across the U.S. economy are feeling, and nowhere is this burnout more obvious than in the cybersecurity teams. Organizations must ensure frequent conversations between executives and cybersecurity managers to ensure they are well equipped to adequately manage alerts, maintain systems, and avoid burnout within their teams.
Other key findings include the following:
• 85% of IT leaders said that they experienced increased workload due to shift in work model including remote workers
• Nearly 70% of IT leaders said that the change in work model has made it more difficult to keep company resources secure
• Nearly 59% of all alert investigations turn out to be false alarms or benign activities
• 90% of IT leaders said they create threat storyboards but close to 60% rely on third-party services to create storyboards after the incident
Not all findings in the report were so glum, however. In a positive sign, 84% of IT leaders were optimistic about their cybersecurity readiness for 2022. The majority of respondents note the availability of new cybersecurity tools as the reason for their positive outlook, with 59% saying that a Detection and Response solution for the cloud, or CxDR, is the innovation they are most excited about for future deployment.
"2021 was a tough year for many IT leaders, but the market is now providing organizations with the tools they need to effectively manage the infrastructures they have and even expand them further," added Morgan. "Given proper resources and effective communication, IT leaders have every right to be positive as we move into the new year."
About the Study
Confluera commissioned an independent research firm to survey U.S. IT leaders using a national network of verified panel providers. A total of 200 respondents completed the survey, which was conducted between December 3-7, 2021. Those surveyed included those with senior titles, including Manager, Director, and VP/C-level. The margin of error for this study is +/-5.9% at the 95% confidence level.