Cloud App Security: Preventions Developers Must Know

The organization migrating to the cloud brought great things in the bucket, like supervised services a company can use to save time and the capability to produce software faster to production and to scale it more efficiently and easily. The company wants to do the task of migrating an existing app to the cloud. Or creating new applications for the public cloud. But there is the one IT security man virtually hovering for the IT team of the organization, arms folded like action hero Dwayne Johnson aka The Rock. If the organization makes one wrong step and he will be ready for a smackdown. And it is because cloud app security is what matters in the application.


If making for cloud were not discouraging enough. The pressure to build secure applications adds more stress and worry to organizations. Moreover, the worse or better these days, the responsibility of making secure application and technology solutions. Using the right models, technology, and ways belongs to developers. “With great power comes great responsibility.” this fits perfectly for developers. However, in the past developer only need to worry and think about the code. But now they have to do a lot of other works that used to be the responsibility of others in the field of IT including cloud app security.

There are many things that organizations should know about cloud app security. So, We will discuss some preventions that developers must know for cloud app security. These actions will help to avoid most of the incidents that come from misconfiguration. So, what is the need for cloud app security or cloud developers to be experts in cloud app security? The truth is that DevOps is the only one that can do the job right.

Cloud App Security

In the current time, To steal data or disrupt key company services or install malicious code hackers or threaten persons try to find and exploit app security exposures. There is an increased focus on targeting openness in the cloud. And web apps that show the change from network-based attacks of the past and the primary device. So, The perception among cybercriminals is that the IT team gives priority to functionality over safety and security, which builds applications and the cloud infrastructure that are hosted on an effortless target.

Adversaries use default configurations, insufficient security controls, cloud infrastructures like AWS, Azure Cloud, and misconfigurations in applications. Nowadays, cloud experts or developers have a crucial role in securing apps against cyber threats. Moreover, It is important for developers to understand and have knowledge of the latest practices in the security of applications. In this article, we will see preventions that cloud experts or developers should know to code secure and protect applications, data, and sensitive information.

Use Authorized APIs Only

APIs allow developers and the IT team to connect different services and applications. And allows sharing information and data with each other. Moreover, for an organization APIs give opportunities to optimize application usability, innovation, and functionality. But there is a problem with APIs. So, API can expose apps’ logic and sensitive information to other applications and malicious threat persons. For the security of an application, the company must make sure that it uses an authorized API. API must have a way of authorization to verify that data and information access requests are secure.

Follow OWASP Top Ten

The Open Web Application Security Project (OWASP) is an important resource that utilizes the expert-driven sense to rank the top ten most sensitive web or cloud app security risks. Moreover, it gives example attack scenarios and guidance to help organizations prevent threats and risks in the cloud. As a global agreement towards more secure coding applications, it serves as a strong starting point for organizations to make a security-first and risk-free development culture.

Don’t use sensitive information in code

There are many people running around trying to get those credentials for organizations and applications. The bad news is that the finder probably will not tell about it until it is too late. If an organization tries to go to code repo and delete those sensitive data like username, password, tokens right now. It will be still visible in the older version or previous version due to the concept of versioning. Go ahead and change any key or token used in the code. It will be surprising to find out that a valid token is that or it is still working. So, make sure the organization uses authenticated service and not direct credentials.


Current applications are touchpoints for sensitive information. Businesses need to protect this data both for reputation and compliance objectives. Whether communicated using the network from and to the application or saved in a cloud database. It is the best security method to encrypt this information and data at the application layer. Encryption encodes the data so that it is not readable to unauthorized parties. Choose NIST-approved encryption algorithms for the better security and safety of the application.

Update regularly

According to the report, after comparing 500 leading applications it is come to know that the optimal update frequency is 20 to 40 days. One clear reason for regular updates of applications is that updating cloud applications makes them more secure. So, when updating apps often, can also release patches that fix possible security susceptibilities or errors or bugs in a time frame before malicious threat persons find and exploit them.

Integrate AppSec Tools in SDLC

SDLC means software development life cycle. Considering security as a secondary to the development cycle restricts an organization’s ability to build secure applications. Generally, developers want to focus more on functions, features, and usability while compressing the development lifecycle of software through DevOps practices. It is critical to shift to a DevSecOps approach that uses application security tools into the development lifecycle from the start. DevSecOps needs automation and workflows to make sure security does not slow down the development of software or suppress invention.

Require multifactor authentication

This is not a must configuration but it is always available in settings. Moreover, there is no reason that one should not activate multi-factor authentication. Many people including developers have lost their social media accounts or been locked out of their cloud account or WhatsApp hacks. This all is just because they did not use multifactor authentication. The organization needs this in a cloud account also. It will not hurt the company so just do it.

Utilize Open-source Libraries

Open source is growing at a high speed in this pandemic time. As this party open-source libraries allow organizations and developers to precompile routines to improve efficiency in the current fast-paced development background. However, open-source libraries give efficiency with a security cost. In the 2020 year, the number of published open-source exposures grew by 50 percent.

This type of open source library might contain malicious code or vulnerabilities that can affect the security of the whole software or the entire application. Open-source libraries containing vulnerabilities or malicious code can compromise the security of your entire application. Exercise warning in the use of open-source libraries by maintaining a clear inventory of open source components. And bypassing open-source libraries that do not have an active development community.

Use groups to manage users and their privileges

Sometimes, Developers or IT teams have a team cloud account. And they feel like the right time and place to check out possible infrastructure, integrations with new services, or architectures. However, it might seem that the team account has no security threats or it is completely uncomfortable about cutting benefits for some people, so organizations give everyone admin credentials.

But organizations should not do this. As this account can do a lot of damage to it. Moreover, the company can use groups and provide each the option to access only what is needed. So, create or make a group based on need and usage. And, do not feel waver to tell this act to rest of team. It’s not about trust. It is just a precaution that a company needs to take after some stage or level of business.

Check the images

Nowadays, Everyone uses open source code and docker images. But sometimes it contains sensitive information or malicious code or vulnerabilities. They can be manipulated for a lot of different things, like running crypto miners, stealing data, or allowing remote code execution. The best practice is to have automation for vulnerability scanning. But that is a very easy task. However, do not forget to fix whatever is found in the scan.

For business purposes, the company might need to make golden images or thumbnails for various needs. It is a good idea to do. However, remember two important things. The first is that the golden image is must be accessible. Developers will not use that image if they don’t get access that works well with their workflow. Another is an image is just a starting point. So, make sure the organization easily detects any important drifts or changes as there is a high chance that the company will get the drift from it.

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