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!

Error: Please check your email address.
Rocket to Success - Your 10 Tips for Smarter ERP System Selection

Tags European Network and Information Security Agencyregulationsecuritydata breachgovernmentcloud computinginternet

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

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Sarah Ieroianni

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

The print quality also does not disappoint, it’s clear, bold, doesn’t smudge and the text is perfectly sized.

Ratchada Dunn

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The Huddle Board’s built in program; Sharp Touch Viewing software allows us to easily manipulate and edit our documents (jpegs and PDFs) all at the same time on the dashboard.

George Khoury

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The biggest perks for me would be that it comes with easy to use and comprehensive programs that make the collaboration process a whole lot more intuitive and organic

David Coyle

Brother PocketJet PJ-773 A4 Portable Thermal Printer

I rate the printer as a 5 out of 5 stars as it has been able to fit seamlessly into my busy and mobile lifestyle.

Kurt Hegetschweiler

Brother PocketJet PJ-773 A4 Portable Thermal Printer

It’s perfect for mobile workers. Just take it out — it’s small enough to sit anywhere — turn it on, load a sheet of paper, and start printing.

Matthew Stivala

HP OfficeJet 250 Mobile Printer

The HP OfficeJet 250 Mobile Printer is a great device that fits perfectly into my fast paced and mobile lifestyle. My first impression of the printer itself was how incredibly compact and sleek the device was.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?