EU cybersecurity agency warns about over-reliance on cloud

ENISA sees an upside to cloud usage, too

The growth in cloud computing is a double-edged sword, Europe's top cybersecurity agency warned on Thursday.

The European Network and Information Security Agency (ENISA) published a new report on the cloud from the perspective of critical information infrastructure protection, just one week after the European Commission announced its plans for a new Network and Information Security Directive.

Under that proposed new law, ENISA would play a key role in helping the European Union's member states share information about security breaches.

ENISA clearly sees the cloud as the area of most concern, given the concentration of users and data and its use in critical sectors such as finance, health, energy and transportation.

"In a few years, a large majority of organizations will be dependent on cloud computing. Large cloud services will have tens of millions of end-users. What happens if one of these cloud services fails, or gets hacked?" asks the report.

It notes that cloud services are themselves becoming a critical information infrastructure.

ENISA executive director Udo Helmbrecht welcomed plans for mandatory breach reporting in the new directive, particularly for cloud services, and dismissed claims by businesses that this would put an undue burden on them. "Companies are always complaining," he said. But he sees breach reporting as essential in protecting critical cloud-computing services.

The report also calls for better transparency regarding logical and physical dependencies -- which critical operators or services depend on which cloud computing services -- and says that governments should include large cloud services in national risk assessments as well as tracking cloud dependencies.

However, the report did find one silver lining to the cloud growing over the IT industry: Cloud computing can provide "resilience in the face of natural disasters and Distributed Denial of Service attacks," it said.

The agency plans to launch a new working group focusing on CIIP and governmental cloud security in the coming months.

Follow Jennifer on Twitter at @BrusselsGeek or email tips and comments to jennifer_baker@idg.com.

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags governmentcloud computingregulationinternetEuropean Network and Information Security Agency

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Jennifer Baker

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Brand Post

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Luke Hill

MSI GT75 TITAN

I need power and lots of it. As a Front End Web developer anything less just won’t cut it which is why the MSI GT75 is an outstanding laptop for me. It’s a sleek and futuristic looking, high quality, beast that has a touch of sci-fi flare about it.

Emily Tyson

MSI GE63 Raider

If you’re looking to invest in your next work horse laptop for work or home use, you can’t go wrong with the MSI GE63.

Laura Johnston

MSI GS65 Stealth Thin

If you can afford the price tag, it is well worth the money. It out performs any other laptop I have tried for gaming, and the transportable design and incredible display also make it ideal for work.

Andrew Teoh

Brother MFC-L9570CDW Multifunction Printer

Touch screen visibility and operation was great and easy to navigate. Each menu and sub-menu was in an understandable order and category

Louise Coady

Brother MFC-L9570CDW Multifunction Printer

The printer was convenient, produced clear and vibrant images and was very easy to use

Edwina Hargreaves

WD My Cloud Home

I would recommend this device for families and small businesses who want one safe place to store all their important digital content and a way to easily share it with friends, family, business partners, or customers.

Featured Content

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?