SaaS Security 101: The Definitive Guide

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Most company apps and data used to be hosted on-premises servers until recently. While the operation bore the brunt of the responsibility for securing sensitive data, the IT infrastructure was known and relatively simple to manage. This has altered with the emergence of cloud-based SaaS technologies.

Understanding security concepts and adopting actions that strengthen SaaS security can help to alleviate SaaS security issues. This guide will assist you in comprehending the many components of security. We’ll also go over the security precautions that must be taken to keep SaaS-based apps safe from fraudsters and hacking attempts. So, keep reading to learn more about SaaS security.

What is SaaS?

Software as a service (SaaS) is a licensing and delivery model for software that is permitted on a subscription basis and hosted centrally. Instead of installing and maintaining software, you just use the Internet to access it, eliminating the need for complicated software and device maintenance.

With SaaS, you rent the usage of an app for your company, and your employees access it through the Internet, often using a web browser. The service provider is in charge of the hardware and software, and with the right service agreement, they will assure the app’s availability and security, as well as the protection of your data.

With all these benefits, the number of companies that adopted SaaS security models is growing rapidly. In fact, by the end of 2022, the SaaS business is estimated to be valued at over $172 billion US dollars. This shows SaaS will become one of the most used services in its field.

Security Practices of SaaS

To provide safe access to the internet and applications, SaaS security programs utilize different practices. You may make use of the great capabilities and benefits of SaaS without worrying about security if you follow the security practices listed below.

1) End-to-end Data Encryption

End-to-end encryption (E2EE) is a secure communication technology that prevents third parties from gaining access to data as it moves from one end system or device to another. E2EE encrypts data on the sender’s system or device, and only the intended receiver has the key to decode it.

This implies that all communication between the server and the user is secured and takes place using SSL connections. End-to-end encryption should, however, be available for data storage.

Many providers offer the ability to encrypt data by default, however, some consumers must indicate this explicitly. Clients can also use Multi-domain SSL certificates to encrypt particular fields such as financial information.

2) Multi-factor Authentication and User Privileges

Different degrees of rights should be assigned to different types of users. Cybercriminals frequently abuse privileges to get access to an application’s essential files.

Access to critical files and folders should be restricted to administrators only. Furthermore, for attackers, authentication is a key point of entry. The new norm for login into applications is two-factor authentication.

3) Cloud Access Security Broker – CASB

A cloud access security broker (CASB) is a software product or service that stands between the on-premises architecture of an organization and the infrastructure of a cloud provider. CASBs are offered as software on-premises or in the cloud, as well as as a service.

CASB uses a technology that automatically identifies cloud apps in use, as well as high-risk applications, users, and other essential risk characteristics. A number of different security access restrictions may be enforced by cloud access security brokers such as encryption, web application firewalls, etc.

Possible SaaS Security Concerns

With increasingly advanced technology comes more sophisticated cyber threats. As a result, you must periodically review your SaaS security procedures. Here are some potential security issues you should consider.

– Phishing

Phishing attempts via email have become one of the most prominent hazards to watch out for as enterprises have adopted SaaS email and other productivity tools.

– Data Theft

The act of stealing information from company databases, devices, and servers is known as data theft. When sensitive data is stored in the cloud, it becomes more exposed to cyber-attacks.

– Malware

Malware, often known as malicious software, is any program or file designed to harm a computer, network, or server. Because of the ability of SaaS services to sync between devices, malware may spread swiftly.

– Unauthorized Access

IT teams have less control over which users have access to which data with SaaS. This might result in data being deleted or leaked by unauthorized workers.

Advantages of SaaS

SaaS provides a variety of advantages to companies such as gaining access to sophisticated applications. You don’t need to buy, install, update, or manage any hardware, middleware, or software to give SaaS apps to consumers.

Even complex corporate systems, such as enterprise resource planning — ERP and customer relationship management — CRM, are now accessible to enterprises without the resources to purchase, operate, and manage the necessary equipment and software.

Another advantage of SaaS is paying only for what you use. Since SaaS services automatically scale up and down based on usage, you only pay depending on your usage which can help you to save money. With SaaS, you can also access applications and data from anywhere.

Users may access their data from any Internet-connected computer or mobile device when their data is saved in the cloud. Furthermore, because application data is kept in the cloud, no data is lost if a user’s computer or device malfunctions.

Last but not least, SaaS helps you to mobilize your workforce. Since users can access SaaS programs and data from anywhere with a computer or mobile device, SaaS makes it simple to mobilize your workforce. Furthermore, because the service provider has already done so, you don’t have to bother about designing apps that work on a variety of computers and devices.

As We Close

Even though it is recorded that most of the cloud security failures are customer fault, it is important to choose SaaS providers carefully. With a well-selected service provider, to deal with the security challenges that come with mobile computing, you don’t need to hire a specialist. Also, you should remember that once you implement SaaS, these security measures must be monitored and updated on a regular basis.


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Kokou Adzo

Kokou Adzo is a stalwart in the tech journalism community, has been chronicling the ever-evolving world of Apple products and innovations for over a decade. As a Senior Author at Apple Gazette, Kokou combines a deep passion for technology with an innate ability to translate complex tech jargon into relatable insights for everyday users.

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