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AWS Security Services [Top Rated]: Risks, Tips and Astra Security

Updated on: November 7, 2022

AWS Security Services [Top Rated]: Risks, Tips and Astra Security

Article Summary

This article explains all about the top-rated AWS security services. Along with this it also details the top risks that plague an AWS platform as well as some great tips to maintain AWS security. Finally, the article mentions Astra Security, a one-stop destination for all your cloud security requirements.

AWS Security Services

Gartner predicts that before the end of 2022, global cloud services spending will reach over $482 billion, and with such an increased investment and users, cyber-attackers are sure to migrate and target cloud services.  

With AWS gaining more popularity and usage among organizations of varied capacities, it becomes crucial for the cloud platform to avoid any and all risks and threats that may result in the exposure of confidential data. Here are some of the top security services provided by AWS to ensure the utmost safety of their applications and data stored with in- 

  1. AWS IAM: Mainly to manage access to services and resources.
  2. AWS Security Hub: Used for the automation of security checks and security alerts.
  3. AWS Inspector: Tool to automate vulnerability management.
  4. AWS Shield: Protection from Distributed Denial of Service attacks (DDoS).
  5. AWS Audit Manager: For the continuous auditing of the AWS platform to assess compliance

Introduction

With the Amazon Web Services platform being the top-most widely used cloud platform by a large number of organizations worldwide, its security services gained quite the attention and priority. Stepping up to the demand for increased and enhanced security, AWS put forth multiple services that are designed to tighten security and increase the protection afforded to its assets. 

This article will shed light on the various important AWS security services available as well as the common risks that plague the AWS platform. Along with this, tips to maintain a solid AWS platform will also be discussed. Finally a perfect solution to one’s AWS penetration testing needs, Astra Pentest is also detailed for your benefit.  

AWS Security services

Top Rated AWS Security Services

Here are the five top-rated AWS security services provided by Amazon Web Services for the benefit of its customers:  

1. AWS IAM

AWS Identity Access and Management allows one to define and set parameters for access with specific credentials, and to scale the privileges as and when required. 

It allows the fine-tuning of access and authorization allowing you to decide which individuals, groups, or roles can access certain information. 

The features offered by AWS IAM include 

  • AWS Single Sign-On
  • Manage permissions for single accounts
  • Manage single account roles

2. AWS Security Hub

AWS Security Hub is a cloud security posture management service that enables the automation of security checks for best practices and aids with the acceleration of mean-time response through automated response and remediation. 

It performs a quick analysis of the attention-demanding security alerts across all regions and accounts within your AWS platform. It consolidates these findings to a standard format to allow you to take quicker action. 

This service in tandem with others provided by AWS like AWS Inspector, Amazon Macie, and more allows you to have a 360-degree view of your AWS security.  

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3. AWS Inspector

This automated vulnerability management service helps by performing continuous scans of the automatically detected AWS workloads for vulnerabilities and unintentional exposures. After a few easy steps to enable its services, AWS Inspector can be used across all your AWS accounts. 

Once enabled, it discovers EC2 instances and images within the Amazon ECR (Elastic Container Registry) and starts assessing them for flaws or areas of exposure. It provides a highly contextualized risk score that factors in a lot of criteria through the correlation between CVEs, network accessibility, and exploitability.  

4. AWS Shield

AWS Shield is one of the AWS security services that provide protection to the infrastructure such as network connections. It provides protection against DDoS attacks thus securing the applications running on the AWS cloud. 

AWS Shield is of two types: Standard and Advanced. Standard Shield protects against basic threats like common network DDoS attacks. Advanced Shield goes above and beyond the standard services by also providing identification and prevention of large-scale DDoS attacks, integration, and closely monitored visibility of attacks.  

5. AWS Audit Manager

This tool helps with easy auditing of your AWS workloads to assess its risk levels and compliance with regulatory requirements. It automates evidence collection for audits and makes audits scalable according to the growth of one’s business. 

Controls like policies, activities, and procedures can be assessed for their effective operation. It helps with the easy mapping of AWS from usage to controls while also streamlining collaboration between various teams. It also produces a detailed report that ensures integrity. 

Also Read: AWS Security, Identity And Compliance

Top AWS Security Risks

1. Weak Data Encryption

AWS provides its customers with an easy and cost-effective way to store their data through S3 buckets which are formally known as Simple Storage Service. Customers can create these buckets from any point in the world and store their data in them. 

However, the issue lies in the fact that these private buckets of information can easily be made public by anyone who has an AWS account. This can lead to huge amounts of data being lost or stolen for personal gain. 

2. Liability Understanding

AWS works on a shared responsibility model, meaning that the AWS security is covered by AWS but the security of the applications and the sensitive data stored is covered by the customers themselves. 

A thorough understanding of this model and the rules it entails is crucial to know where and to whom the liabilities fall in case of a mishap in security leading to a breach of confidential data. Users have to deal with access control, login monitoring and more as this falls under the domain of their application and data’s safety.

3. Non-Compliance

Non-compliance is a major issue for organizations in any sector that can lead to heavy fines and in some extreme cases, criminal charges. Thus, it is mandatory to maintain compliance with specific regulatory standards that are applicable for one’s organization to be compliant. 

HIPAA, PCI-DSS, SOC2, ISO 27001, and GDPR are some of the global security standards set. Non-compliance with these global standards portrays the organizations as unreliable and of mediocre standard when it comes to data safety. 

4. Poor Identity and Access Management

Poor IAM ( identity and access management) can lead to the wrong individuals being granted access to sensitive information. This is where proper authorization and authentication play a crucial role since they can help prevent unauthorized access. 

This is especially concerning when access is still available to previous and inactive employees. Lack of role-based access is yet another reason for such a risk to arise.

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Tips To Maintain AWS Security

1. Data Encryption and Backup

Encryption is an important feature to keep data that is stored and transmitted in the cloud securely and safe from malicious attacks. It is also a security mandate for some regulatory standards without which there would be an issue of non-compliance. 

Backing up sensitive data is yet another important feature to make use of since if any unmitigated disaster or breach occurs, organizations can get up and running again with a short recovery period owing to the data backups in place. 

2. Authentication and Authorization

Placing and assessing good authentication and authorization is crucial to avoiding any malicious attacks stemming from poor authentication and improper authorization. 

The former can occur due to weak passwords and the lack of multifactor authentication. The latter can occur when role-based authorization is constantly updated and improper access is still available to previous employees and others. 

3. Continuous Vulnerability Assessments

AWS security services offer continuous and comprehensive vulnerability scans to assess and find any vulnerabilities within the cloud system. Finding vulnerabilities based on CVEs, intel, OWASP Top 10, and SANS 25. 

Scanning behind logins and detecting business logic errors are other features that can truly help customers gain an accurate assessment of their security measures. 

4. Regular Penetration Tests

Regular penetration tests are crucial for the security of a cloud environment by both the customers and the providers to analyze and exploit the vulnerabilities within the security system.

The results of such a pentest will detail the flaws found along with the measures that can be taken to fix them before any malicious attackers take advantage of them. 

Astra Security For AWS Security Services

steps in vulnerability scanning
  • Robust Scanning

Astra provides robust scanning for AWS security services that follow the OWASP and NIST methodologies to carry out more than 3000 tests that are capable of detecting vulnerabilities mentioned in OWASP Top 10, SANs 25, and known CVEs. 

Astra’s vulnerability scanners are constantly updated to ensure that all the latest vulnerabilities can be detected and it provides re-scans once remediation is over. 

  • Regular Pentests

Astra’s economical AWS security services packages also feature regular pentests, both automated and manual. This ensures that customers can stay ahead of any vulnerabilities that may plague their security once an initial pentest is complete. 

Astra Pentest team gives a zero false positive assurance through vetting the results of a scan to weed out any false positives that may have risen. Along with this scans behind logins are also carried out as a part of the pentest. 

  • Achieve Compliance

As a part of AWS security services, Astra’s compliance-specific dashboard and testing help scan for various compliances of your choosing like GDPR, HIPAA, PCI-DSS, ISO 27001, and more. You can opt for the compliance that your organization needs to be compliant with and check compliance for and a scan is conducted for it. 

Once the compliance-specific scan is complete a compliance report has been generated that details the areas of non-compliance and the measures to remediate the same. This is crucial since non-compliance can lead to hefty fines and or even criminal charges based on gravity. 

  • Integrations Possible

Astra allows CI/CD integrations with JIRA, Slack, GitHub, GitLab, as a part of its AWS security services. This allows organizations to move from DevOps to DevSecOps giving security more priority. 

This in turn means that applications in development are tested for vulnerabilities during every phase of their development thus allowing their immediate patching. 

  • Budget Friendly

Astra’s packages for AWS security services are extremely budget friendly and customizable as per the needs of the clients. Its services start at a low cost of $99 per month and vary depending on requirements.

  • Customer Service

Astra provides exceptional customer services and is reachable by emails, calls, or texts 24*7. Expert pentesters can help resolve your doubts and queries regarding any vulnerabilities within the dashboard where there is a comment option under each vulnerability detected. 

Astra Pentest Certificate
  • Pentest Certificate

Astra provides an Astra Pentest Certificate once the entire pentest process is completed. This involves making the remediations based on the pentest report and also re-scanning the patches made to ensure that there are no further vulnerabilities. 

Also Read: Astra Pentest Certificate

Conclusion

This article has details on the top-rated AWS security services like AWS Security Hub, Inspector, IAM, and more. With this, the article has also explained a few of the most common vulnerabilities detected within the AWS platform that pose a threat to security. 

Lastly, tips to avoid these threats as well as the best one-stop solution, Astra Pentest have been detailed for all your AWS Security Testing needs.

FAQs

What are security services in AWS?

These are services provided by AWS (Amazon Web Services) to its customers to assess and enhance their security measures through periodic vulnerability assessments and security checkups. 

What are other security-related services offered by AWS?

Other security-related services offered by AWS include: 
1. AWS Macie- Tool for discovery and protection of sensitive data.
2. AWS Artifact- Self-service portal to access AWS compliance reports.
3. Amazon Detective- Aids with the investigation of potential security issues.
4. Amazon Cognito- Helps with identity management for all apps.

What are some best practices for AWS security?

A few best practices for enhanced AWS security are: 
Enabling multifactor authentication
Setting strong passwords
Enabling AWS IAM for proper authentication and authorization.

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Nivedita James

Nivedita is a technical writer with Astra who has a deep love for knowledge and all things curious in nature. An avid reader at heart she found her calling writing about SEO, robotics, and currently cybersecurity.
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