Security Issues in Cloud Computing: A Survey of Risks, Threats and Vulnerabilities

Security Issues in Cloud Computing: A Survey of Risks, Threats and Vulnerabilities

Kamal Dahbur (New York Institute of Technology, Jordan), Bassil Mohammad (New York Institute of Technology, Jordan) and Ahmad Bisher Tarakji (New York Institute of Technology, Jordan)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-4666-1879-4.ch011
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Cloud Computing (CC) is revolutionizing the methodology by which IT services are being utilized. It is being introduced and marketed with many attractive promises that are enticing to many companies and managers, such as reduced capital costs and relief from managing complex information technology infrastructure. However, along with desirable benefits come risks and security concerns that must be considered and addressed correctly. Thus, security issues must be considered as a major issue when considering Cloud Computing. This paper discusses Cloud Computing and its related concepts; highlights and categorizes many of the security issues introduced by the “cloud”; surveys the risks, threats, and vulnerabilities; and makes the necessary recommendations that can help promote the benefits and mitigate the risks associated with Cloud Computing.
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Overview Of Cloud Computing

As with any new technology, the definition of cloud computing is changing with the evolution of technology and its services. No standard definition for cloud computing has yet been agreed upon, especially since it encompasses so many different models and potential markets, depending on venders and services. In the simplest of terms, cloud computing is basically internet- based computing. The term “cloud” is used as a metaphor for the Internet, and came from the well known cloud drawing that was used in network diagrams to depict the Internet’s underlying networking infrastructure. The computation in the internet is done by groups of shared servers that provide on demand hardware resources, data and software to devices connected to the net.

The National Institute of Standards and Technology NIST, gives a more formal definition: “Cloud computing is a model for enabling convenient, on-demand network access to a shared pool of configurable computing resources (e.g., networks, servers, storage, applications, and services) that can be rapidly provisioned and released with minimal management effort or service provider interaction” (NIST, 2010) also notes that this definition will probably change over time.

In this sense, users of cloud computing are raised to a level of abstraction where they are hidden and relived from the details of the hardware or software infrastructures that supports their computations. This greatly simplifies the costs involved in establishing and managing the IT that is needed to meet the requirements of any business. And since businesses will pay only for the required IT resources when and as they are needed, more and much more powerful resources can be provided at a fraction of the price of the real value for such resources.

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