Security in a Hybrid Cloud Environment

Achieving more choice in how you manage your security with a private cloud solution

In our series of blogs, we are looking at how an agile private cloud solution can support your hybrid cloud strategy, as part of our whitepaper Hybrid Cloud: Choosing the right cloud for your workload. CenturyLink works with customers across a range of different cloud types: private, public, hybrid and on-premise IT – but a certain business need or workload fits a certain type of cloud service. We’re helping to uncover which workload fits which cloud type to make it easier for you to find the right hybrid cloud mix for your business.

This time we’re looking at security in a private cloud environment.

Many organisations choose to move to a private cloud environment to achieve the flexibility of easier deployment and resource usage of the cloud, while maintaining the control over security that private cloud offers. In a public cloud environment, you have a range of different security options available to you - some available straight out of the box and some additional services you can add onto your solution for a monthly cost. For applications that require high levels of security, these additional costs can quickly add up when scaled across your entire IT environment.

We speak to many customers who want more control over customising their security measures, to a greater degree than many of the public cloud solutions allow. CenturyLink Private Cloud on VMware Cloud Foundation with HPE gives customers the best of both worlds: the security of a dedicate private cloud environment with the flexibility of VMware Cloud Foundation.

Control and customisation

Security today is becoming hyper-personalised - there is no one size fits all approach to security, as so much depends on the countries in which you operate, the type of customers you serve, the industry you work in, and type of data you manage as a business. Because of this, it is very difficult to find a public cloud service that has ready-to-go security solutions which align specifically to the regulations and frameworks that you have to comply with.

As the world becomes more security-aware, the number of compliance criteria and scale of industry regulatory legislation will inevitably increase, which impacts on the IT security measures that an organisation needs to roll out. In a private cloud environment, you have control over customising how your cloud is built and managed so that it aligns specifically to your business and the industry in which you operate.

Public cloud providers may not have specific sector awareness and may not deploy their cloud services in a way that aligns with your industry's unique requirements for handling highly sensitive data or providing resiliency in the event of an attack. Services may be more general in order to serve their wider audience of customers so additional customisation is often required.

Micro-segmentation

With VMware, we can offer security at a more granular level, assigning policies to specific workloads across your private cloud - we call this micro-segmentation. It allows you to be incredibly specific and targeted with your security measures so that you can segment specific workloads and apply security and access policies to those individual workloads without impacting on other workloads or applications.

This can be useful for highly regulated sectors who require different levels of security applying to different data sets or applications – perhaps data involving real-time financial transactions compared to marketing data and analytics from your website.

This is enabled by everything across your private cloud solution being software defined - from the server, to the storage to the networking layer - meaning that customisation can be performed at a software level and policies applied as the intelligent layer is decoupled from the hardware making on-the-fly changes much easier. It's a different way of managing security across your environment, moving from traditional catch-all firewall rules and access policies to a more detailed and targeted approach to security.

Building security in

Because your cloud environment is physically separate from any other organisation's cloud environment, you can feel more secure about your data, network and resources being kept away from any other cloud service consumers. For some customers this is a matter of personal preference, whilst for others operating in highly regulated industries this is a must.

By moving services away from traditional infrastructure and towards a more flexible private cloud service, it’s easier to operate a hybrid cloud environment where appropriate applications and workloads are put into the public cloud, and workloads which need to be kept physically separate remain within your private cloud environment – complete with granular security policies and customised security add-ons tailored to your business’ specific security needs.

Manage your hybrid cloud securely

With Cloud Application Manager from CenturyLink, you can manage your different cloud platforms and resources from one single interface – so you can be sure of where your resources are located across your different cloud platforms, what those resources are doing, and how they are being secured.

With the ability to deploy to any cloud, working with a trusted expert partner like CenturyLink gives you the peace of mind that your cloud environments are being monitored and managed for greater insights into your wider IT estate and more visibility over potential security issues before they occur.

 

Find out more about CenturyLink Private Cloud on VMware Cloud Foundation with HPE here.

 

About HPE and CenturyLink 

CenturyLink is a global communications and IT services company focused on connecting its customers to the power of the digital world. CenturyLink offers network and data systems management, big data analytics, managed security services, hosting, cloud, and IT consulting services. CenturyLink is an HPE Gold Partner Service Provider.

 

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