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Top 15 SaaS Security Risks (and Solutions)

Top 15 SaaS Security Risks (and Solutions)

By: Aiza Gill

Organizations are increasingly adopting cloud technologies as part of their strategy for delivering critical business services. 80% of respondents now employ cloud computing as their primary service, including software-as-service (SaaS) offerings. SaaS services assist companies to meet crucial goals, including reducing costs and accelerating time-to-market. But as with other digital transformation products, there are security risks. In addition to a secure environment, businesses must ultimately rely on third parties when signing up as users for services and information.

15 Security Risks To Discuss With Your Saas Supplier

Privacy advocates have criticized using SaaS to purchase data, which is generally centered on security and privacy.

1)  Privacy And Data Breaches

Data breaches can affect organizations all the time. It is crucial that you find a solution that can provide you with an increased level of protection against this threat, using high-performing technology.

2)  Disaster Recovery

Disaster strikes are often spontaneous events that can damage your business. The most effective way to cope with the imminent catastrophe is to employ risk management solutions.

3)  Third-Party Risks

The SaaS service generates third-party risk: the risk of any third party in a company’s supply chain. Third-party services may present different risk factors for information protection. In some cases, a company would consider a hired cleaning service a low-risk security problem, while a SaaS vendor may pose high-risk. Typically SaaS applications can access and store sensitive information, such as publicly identifiable information. Your organization may be aware of the security risks that can occur from cyber attacks, but the protections for your organization will only come from the most vital links in the supply chain.

4)  Misconfigurations

Most SaaS systems contain additional complexity and increase potential misconfiguration problems. Even simple configuration problems could have negative impacts on cloud infrastructure. In February 2008, Pakistan Telecom blocked videos from YouTube for blasphemed content in Pakistan. Their attempt to create an arbitrary route for YouTube was unsuccessful.

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5)  Uncertainty Of Responsibility

The security of clouds is the responsibility of both organizations and their cloud service providers. Your SaaS vendor has different shared responsibility models for the different stakeholders in their organizations. Security teams have to take account of the specific security requirements of each SaaS service or create a security gap in a service where vendors have assumed the responsibility. If an organization breaches its security, it must consider that it must

be adequately secured and protected. This page shows the everyday responsibilities model for Microsoft Azure and AWS. Microsoft’s cloud services.

6)  Provide Staff Training

Until recently, most organizations in the US had adopted WFD-type models, and many have stayed in place. More endpoints are now available for remote working across the workplace network, including mobile phones and laptop computers. This addition of attack vectors increases the attack surface and creates inconsistencies in security, as admins don’t control the settings of their devices. Your organization should develop training programs to ensure staff members learn all about security requirements in case of a breach. Training should cover several topics, including how to establish secure WFH practice.

7)  Access Management

Access management is essential because sensitive files can be accessed. Customers should understand the vulnerability of public cloud data if the data is encrypted and accessible. A more critical question is whether a network security problem is a possible cause of deficient patching and no monitoring.

8)  Cloud Misconfigurations

SaaS enables organizations to protect against cyber-attacks from a public cloud environment. Cloud misconfiguration can happen based on the failure of SaaS vendors in cloud environments that can compromise data security. Typical security breaches in organizations include a typical misconfiguration of cloud computing because they allow excessive permissions. This error happens when an Administrator provides unauthorized access to an end user, which causes a permission gap. Excessive revocation of permissions can pose serious security risks because they often allow unauthorized access to cloud systems.

9)  Supply Chain Attacks

Cybercriminal attacks occur on supply chain systems, targeting organizations through vulnerabilities in their supply chains. These types of vulnerabilities usually occur when vendors fail at security measures or if they fail at security. Cybercriminals can compromise sensitive information within an organization by attempting to hack into source software. In particular, the most significant cyberattack on the US government has been triggered by Solarwind s SaaS software update. The security and integrity of supply chains are essential for any company to protect itself from cyber threats.

10)  Non-compliance

A company’s certification in security measures shows compliance with regulations and standards in cyber security procedures. Even if a company has implemented several internal

regulatory frameworks within its system, the vendor will likely not comply. PCI’s DSS standard has specific requirements governing third-party risk management that organizations must satisfy for compliance. Your security team is responsible for identifying any security weaknesses not reported to SaaS vendors and identifying them when appropriate.

11)  Implement Cloud Security Mechanisms

The organization is encouraged to deploy Security Access Service Edge (SASE) to enable better visibility into cloud security control. SSec provides specialized cloud data protection capabilities over traditional networks and network services. SASE’s architecture provides zero-trust network access by using the least privilege principle. Identify access management mechanisms, including Cloud Infrastructure and Entitlement Management (CIEM). The Cloud Security Solution allows for a unified access management system for SaaS applications such as:

12)  Insufficient Due Diligence

Vendor due diligence refers to an organization conducting an extensive evaluation before giving out any company data to the public. The Due Due Diligence Assessment is intended for an entity to be sure the company meets all the regulatory requirements. Similarly, it detects existing security threats and helps clients get remedied before starting a partnership. In most organizations, due diligence is inadequate, and they only check suppliers at onboarding. Using an attacker to access your company’s data could be an easy solution.

13)  Exercise A Thorough Due Diligence

Organizational security postures must be monitored throughout the SaaS lifecycle to validate vendor compliance with security policies. In the context of dozens or thousands of vendors most large companies manage dozens or even thousands of vendors. Installing a vendor tiering process gives security teams the best chance of selecting the best-in-class vendors for their routine risk assessment processes.

14)  Zero-Day Vulnerability

Zero-Day vulnerabilities include unpatched software bugs unknown to developers. Cybercriminals can exploit these vulnerabilities through cyberattacks, often resulting in the loss of information within affected organizations. Zeroday vulnerabilities may impact large organizations and cause a massive shutdown of business operations. For example, Accellion was attacked in 2020 for its File Sharing system.

15)  Establish An Incident Response Plan

Even without strong data security policies, security incidents continue to happen. When data breaches occur through SaaS vendors, organizations must minimize the impact and avoid

costly losses. Generally, the incident response plan covers a specific scenario, ranging from malware attacks to data loss.

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Solutions To Help You Overcome Security Risks

As the security issue in SaaS grows, customer needs are increased, and security practices are developed as the SaaS environment evolves. How does an enterprise IT security product work? There needs to be a drastic change in the security practices of SaaS users, which are referred to below in the following paragraph.

Identity Access Management

It includes aspects such as authentication, authorization, and audits. The use of a single password to access a user’s data can now be bypassed by adding additional authentication features. Multifactor authentication requires the user to provide proof of their identity. When the user finds multifactor authentication difficult, organizations can allow one sign-on. Single login allows users to allow authorization for various applications from the same set. When a user is verified, the user must have specific permissions to operate on the system.

Third-Party Risk Management

Third parties are essential to your security plans. This could lead to a security nightmare if a user gets the freedom of connecting with their chosen software using the APIs. The process for regulating APIs with SaaS services must exist. In addition, access and connection rights are advisable for those who know how to perform necessary checks on third parties before

connecting to these providers. This is how to use CASBs in cloud applications. CASB can identify and prevent unauthorized SaaS product use throughout an organization.

Security Awareness

The Security Awareness campaign should also ensure security for users within your organization. Using an internet-based security system in the cloud can cause users to become vulnerable and can become a source of threat. A lack of a comprehensive security awareness plan likely affects users on any given SaaS system and can create an instance where your data can become vulnerable.

Risk Assessment

Effective risk awareness combines everything from determining the best tech and software assets to understanding the location of the data and how the data connects with the business process. Perform a regular security audit to identify potential security risks. The entire stack is destroyed if you are exposed to the risks of cyber attacks. It should be evident that SaaS applications have a risk of being used.

Policies and Standards

Today, a wide range of resources have been created that assist the user in creating a policy on data security. Even if you don’t have dedicated cloud security teams, you must design basic policies that guide your users in using SaaS applications. Instead of focusing solely on policy adherence, a business unit should continuously change its policies to prevent redundant or unreliable policies.

Stay On Top Of Global Compliance

When selling worldwide, it is essential to consider all data compliance regulations and implement the required measures. A team of experts must carry out this process regularly to ensure a professional outcome. Consider collaborating with a global e-commerce platform that can provide complete compliance management services.

Conclusion

SaaS security should be taken very seriously by companies of all sizes. The 15 risks detailed in this blog post are just a starting point for what needs to be considered when securing SaaS products. Cybercriminals are getting more sophisticated, and the potential damage that can be done is massive. It’s not enough to have security features in place, those need to constantly evolve. Having tight integration between teams is critical and involving security early and often in the product development process is vital. Addressing these risks will go a long way in keeping your data safe and your customers happy.

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