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Saturday, March 10, 2012

Cloud Security Became Concern For US

The United States was noticed to try and make the cloud water-tight. Although the market for cloud computing keeps swelling, there are still doubts over the security of very sensitive information.

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Although the governments in the United Kingdom and the United States may have already started cloud services for their state departments, they still have fears of security breaches. After high-profile information breaches at corporations like Sony back in 2011, many are afraid that there is a chance that valuable data kept on the servers of government departments would become targets for criminals or other countries up to a bit of mischief.

Nevertheless, cloud service providers are going to express the safety of data, so they have put a lot of efforts in convincing users of adequate protections. For example, in the United States, the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, also known as DARPA, is currently funding research at MIT’s Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory aimed at making security in the cloud water-tight.

Today the researchers are developing a system which is able to allow the cloud to identify and recover from any hacker attack almost immediately. The team of developers claim that the “freedom and fluidity” of cloud services is what makes the system vulnerable to attack. Usually, in the event of the hacker attack, the entire infected system is shutdown in order not to allow a virus to spread, which requires to disable the underlying infrastructure until a completion of full clean up. But today the researchers think that they can develop a so-called “self-healing” system which would manage to figure out the source of an attack and react accordingly, fixing the flaw as it goes.

The team has drawn up a blueprint of how a cloud should properly function, hoping to automatically detect the situations when something goes wrong, thus allowing the system to react instantly.

Today, people don’t clearly understand how cloud computing infrastructure works, but the hopes are that by monitoring normal behavioral patterns, the developers could create a better understanding of the emerging problems, instead of searching for signatures of known viruses. Indeed, the researchers insist that they can teach the cloud to “independently find out and recover from new attacks”. In case of their success, a cloud system would be able to survive an attack and keep safely operating.

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