During Units 6 through 10, we continued our investigation of tools and techniques used in the detection and mitigation of malware in modern, cloud-based data storage and applications environments. In this regard, we had the opportunity to employ a malware detection and modification tool called TripWire in a lab environment, investigate a primary standard for secure data engineering as represented in the IEEE 1149.1 (JTAG) standard, and study the evolving threats of malware to data security in the open environment of the cloud and examine what might be done to combat these threats. For this assignment, you will write a research paper, the body of which will be at least 10 pages in length and compliant with APA sixth edition formatting, addressing the following questions: You are a data security consultant to a federal agency. You are asked to present a synopsis of three major threats to the cloud-based data structure which was developed in the assignment for Unit 6. In this paper:

The focus of this research paper is to discuss and analyze the three major threats to the cloud-based data structure that was developed in the assignment for Unit 6. These threats are crucial to the understanding of data security in cloud environments and require comprehensive analysis.

The first major threat to the cloud-based data structure is data breaches. Cloud environments are susceptible to unauthorized access, leaving the data vulnerable to theft or manipulation. Hackers and malicious actors are constantly exploring new methods to breach the security barriers of cloud systems. One common method is through weak user authentication and access control systems. These vulnerabilities can be exploited to gain unauthorized access to sensitive data stored in the cloud. Data breaches pose a significant threat as they can lead to compromised confidential information, financial loss, and reputational damage to individuals or organizations.

The second major threat is data loss. Despite the perception that cloud environments are resilient and secure, data loss can still occur due to various reasons. These reasons include hardware failures, natural disasters, software bugs, and human errors. Cloud service providers generally have mechanisms in place to ensure data redundancy and backup. However, the loss of critical data can have severe consequences, leading to disruption of business operations and financial losses for cloud users. It is essential to implement proper data backup and disaster recovery strategies to mitigate the risk of data loss in cloud environments.

The third major threat is insider attacks. Insider threats refer to individuals within an organization who have authorized access to the cloud environment but misuse their privileges for malicious purposes. These individuals could be disgruntled employees, contractors, or partners with knowledge of the system’s vulnerabilities. Insider attacks can be particularly damaging as the attackers have legitimate access privileges, making it difficult to detect their malicious activities. They can compromise sensitive data, manipulate or delete critical information, or disrupt the overall functioning of the cloud infrastructure. To mitigate insider attacks, organizations must implement strong access control mechanisms, regularly monitor user activities, and enforce strict security policies.

In conclusion, data breaches, data loss, and insider attacks are three major threats to the cloud-based data structure. These threats can have severe consequences, including breaches of confidentiality, financial losses, and disruption of business operations. It is crucial for organizations to stay vigilant and implement robust security measures to mitigate these threats effectively. By addressing these threats, data security in cloud environments can be enhanced, ensuring the confidentiality, integrity, and availability of data.

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