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Cloud Governance with GCP

Digital growth is changing the IT landscape drastically and to keep pace with technology, organizations are fast embracing cloud-first strategies to drive innovation and growth. With everything being cloud centric today, enterprises are experiencing a revolutionary shift in the design, development, and disposition of IT services. Cloud growth and migration across most sectors of business have brought in increased agility, speed, long-term visibility and result-oriented outcomes while simplifying cloud transformations.

In this fast transitioning from adoption to optimization, the actual impact of cloud can be manifested only if long term visibility and monitoring techniques are administered. Hence, the need for a comprehensive outlook towards managing cloud architecture and resources is on the rise. A commissioned study conducted by Forrester Consulting revealed, “52% of IT decision-makers believe cloud acceleration requires core capabilities in comprehensive cloud governance and best practice management to foster more agile, resilient, innovative and cost-optimized cloud environments.”

Importance of cloud governance

It is therefore imperative to build a holistic cloud governance model that enables enterprises to:

  • Implement privacy and security measures to minimize data vulnerabilities.
  • Optimize costs and enhance visibility through advanced analytics and reporting.
  • Design governance policies that align with industry standards.
  • Adhere to regulatory compliance and cloud best practices.
  • Automate and scale processes and infra as and when required.
  • Ascertain cloud vendors comply with industry regulations and cyber laws.
  • Upscale existing governing policies to incept best practices.

What is the Google Cloud Platform?

With the surge in cloud computing, there are multiple cloud providers in the market today and the Google cloud platform is one such significant public cloud vendor that offers a suite of cloud computing services for compute, storage and application development that run on Google datacenters around the globe. They offer a complete cost and data management package that includes pay-as-you-go pricing options, discounts, pricing calculators and tools. Additionally, GCP governance services deliver innovation and can predict and determine a total cost of ownership (TCO) to help estimate costs.

Cloud governance with GCP

To smoothen the process of governance, public cloud service providers ensure authorization of access to resources that facilitate and enhance cloud governance. For instance, GCP’s policy intelligence is a service that enterprises can use to access policy controls that help decrease security risks, vulnerabilities and data loss with minimal or no impact on workloads. IAM recommender provides ML based recommendations for resource accessibility while policy trouble-shooter helps with root cause analysis and resolution of role-based accessibility to minimize risks. Policy analyzer further ensures data visibility and helps quick detection of issues relating to accessing services. Policy simulator highlights the outcome of changing access to specific users.

Additionally, IaC contributes towards automating configuration processes, ensuring consistency and cloud governance that help meet business objectives. Recommender tools can be utilized to right size VM instances, automate pipelines and monitor changes to stay ahead of the curve.

As cloud governance is a significant aspect of any cloud service provider offering, it is important to leverage tools that warrant easy and optimized governance. Google cloud has the competence to establish and adhere to governance best practices that enhance security, manage risks and enable efficient business operations.

Let us look at some key GCP governance tools:

1. Policy Intelligence: Minimize risks with automated policy controls

Keeping up with a large set of processing information to ensure cloud environments are secure can be a daunting task. Manual handling of such data along with high impact failures if any can have major repercussions. GCP’s policy intelligence tool, with its ability to increase visibility, security and automate processes, enables enterprises to comprehend and manage organizational policies with minimal risk and workload.

2. IAM Recommender: Detect and amend excessive permissions

IAM recommender removes unnecessary access to GCP resources via ML based smart access controls, fastens permissions management and enables security teams to auto-detect as well as right size excessive permission access. For instance, if a set of permissions go unused for 90 days, the tool suggests revoking the role. If only a subgroup of a role’s permissions has not been used in 90 days, the tool will recommend granting a specific, less-permissive role that best suits the access pattern. This ensures lesser risk and exposure.

3. Policy Troubleshooter: Swift resolution of access control issues

Problem diagnosis for user denied access can be time-consuming. Policy Troubleshooter makes it easier for the cloud security team to understand why a particular user has been denied access before helping them modify policies to allow appropriate access. Policy Troubleshooter enables users to visualize all policies that grant or deny access to API calls, segregate specific policies that blocked the call and analyse why the call was blocked. The tool facilitates easy yet effective ways of identifying and remediating resource access controls.

4. Policy Analyzer: Identify who has access to resources

While running compliance reports or security checks, policy analyzer provides quick and efficient answers to all questions around access. Access questions such as, “Who has access to this resource and what can they do?” can be answered with ease. It helps in automating demanding tasks like group expansion and role to permission expansion while accounting for the resource and policy hierarchy.

5. Policy Simulator: Rolling out policy changes securely

Changes to user or service account’s access may invoke risks with possibilities of breaking apps or disrupting developer productivity. Policy Simulator helps in understanding the IAM policy change impact before they are actually changed. The tool studies user activity logs of over 90 days to ensure required access are not revoked by mistake, ensuring safe roll out of policy changes.

Google cloud governance with CloudEnsure

CloudEnsure, a platform-based cloud governance solution provides complete visibility cross all cloud providers including associated google cloud accounts. It showcases Google cloud expenses via detailed reports and custom dashboards.

  • Well-architected checks – CloudEnsure has checks to ensure the health and governance of GCP Accounts covering services like Compute Engine, Storage, GKE, Cloud SQL, IAM, VPC, Cloud Functions and Cloud Data Fusion to name a few. The platform also provides implications in case of a particular issue or check not being fixed through the remediation steps provided by CloudEnsure.
  • Inventory report – CloudEnsure furnishes detailed downloadable excel reports to analyse inventory parameters.
  • Resource tag recommendation – provides users the ability to select and
    map recommended tags with respect to cloud resources.
  • Map representation of issues – to depict failed issues region-wise on map.
  • Audit scheduler – to run timely audits according to selections made to keep a check on all governance parameters.
  • Compliance service and controlled view – for a holistic viewpoint of compliance
    standards across Google cloud accounts.
  • Highly flexible scheduling of reports

To avail a free analysis of your cloud spend and secure your cloud environments in entirety, visit today.

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