Now Generally Available: IBM Cloud Security and Compliance Center

4 min read

A better way to achieve cloud security and compliance goals.

As enterprises move regulated workloads to public cloud, it is essential to prove security and compliance concerns are handled better, faster, and easier than their status quo. At IBM, we recognize the magnitude of these issues for all types of clients moving workloads to public cloud, and we understand the sheer complexity they have to endure to achieve a security or compliance standard. It's exhausting.  

So, today, we're excited to introduce the IBM Cloud Security and Compliance Center in collaboration with IBM Research—built directly into the IBM Cloud platform and ready to use. This huge push forward for IBM Cloud delivers on our mission of creating successful cultures of continuous cloud security and compliance by making it easier to setup, manage, monitor, and audit security and compliance related activities. 

This also delivers a key component for our IBM Cloud for Financial Services initiative, allowing our Financial Services clients to deliver security and compliance goals in a better, easier way with IBM Cloud Security and Compliance Center.

What is at stake? 

According to IBM Security's Cost of a Data Breach Report 2020

  • The average time that it takes to identify and contain a data breach is 280 days.
  • Compromised credentials and cloud misconfigurations were each responsible for 19% of malicious breaches .

In addition, the Boston Consulting Group (BCG) stated that from 2009–2017, there were an estimated $321 billion in penalties paid by banks for not meeting regulations. 

IBM Cloud's answer: There has to be a better way. 

What is the IBM Cloud Security and Compliance Center?

The IBM Cloud Security and Compliance Center is integrated as part of the IBM Cloud platform and comprised of the simplification of three different capabilities—security and compliance posture management, configuration governance, and security insights. 

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This means that with the IBM Cloud Security and Compliance Center, IBM Cloud users can implement controls to continuously assess security and compliance posture, apply rules to enforce configuration standardization across accounts, and gain insight into suspicious activity across apps and accounts.

See the video "Introducing the IBM Cloud Security and Compliance Center" for a further overview.

Security and compliance posture management

IBM recently acquired the Spanugo ASAP solution and integrated it at lightning speed into the IBM Cloud Security and Compliance Center to deliver hybrid, multicloud security and compliance posture for IBM Cloud customers. 

To begin, create a collector and add credentials to the service. Then, create a scope that defines the set of specific accounts and resources that are scannable. Scopes can be validated by predefined profiles—which contain pre-set regulatory controls and goals—or validated by custom profiles. 

Based on the configuration, the service uses the credentials and collector to scan and validate the resource configurations in the defined scope against a chosen profile. When the validation is complete, all results can be viewed including a calculated security and compliance score in the IBM Cloud Security and Compliance dashboard. If any failures come from the validation, remediation is available to quickly help resolve the failure. And, to prepare for or during an audit, granular reports can be downloaded to provide internal and external auditors exactly what has been requested within seconds.

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Configuration governance

By creating config rules, IBM Cloud customers can enforce and/or monitor resource configuration across accounts. Config rules are guardrails for resources on how they are provisioned and configured. 

For example, IBM Cloud administrators can disable public access to resources in production accounts but allow it in testing accounts. Through configuration rule enforcement, you can manage account resources with confidence that the configuration of resources will adhere to the guidelines and significantly decrease the likelihood of a misconfiguration that could lead to a security vulnerability.

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Security Insights

Security Advisor will transition into Security Insights as part of the IBM Cloud Security and Compliance Center. It will still allow IBM Cloud users to gain a better understanding of the potential risks impacting environments, including vulnerabilities, the status of expiring certificates, and security threats based on network or access behavior. Notifications can be set to detect these incoming risks to appropriate channels, and remediation steps are offered for mitigation. 

Network Insights provides the ability to monitor and analyze cluster network communication, both incoming and outgoing between Kubernetes clusters and external entities. With Activity Insights, monitor and analyze IBM Cloud Activity Tracker with LogDNA logs to identify unauthorized or suspicious activity made by users or apps. We have also incorporated Caveonix as a third-party integration to further help assess risk and compliance posture for VMWare workloads that are deployed to IBM Cloud, specifically IBM Cloud for Financial Services. For more information, see this partner success story

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Note: As part of our move toward a single experience for security and compliance, the Config Advisor feature of Security Advisor is deprecated and replaced with our configuration governance capabilities. 

How can I get started?

Follow the getting started tutorial to enable security and compliance posture management for resources, define config rules to standardize resource configuration, or enable built-in insights to start detecting incoming threats. To learn more about IBM Cloud's overall approach, check out Achieving Continuous Security and Compliance on IBM Cloud for Financial Services.   

As a reminder, organizations with fully deployed security automation already save an average of $3.58 million compared to those that do not, according to the Cost of a Data Breach Report 2020 by IBM Security. So, what are you waiting for? 

Get started today with the IBM Cloud Security and Compliance Center. 

Feedback

We are excited to offer this ground-breaking capability for our IBM Cloud customers. We'd like to hear from you to learn more about your questions, comments, raves, and concerns. Please share your feedback by using the Feedback button on any page at cloud.ibm.com. We need to know how we are helping you deliver on your own mission of creating successful cultures of continuous cloud security and compliance by making it easier to setup, manage, monitor, and audit security and compliance related activities.  

Thanks for taking the time to read and we look forward to solving future security and compliance problems together. 

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