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Cloud storage vulnerable warns Ericsson VP

Wednesday, October 22nd 2014 by Ellen Branagh

Cloud security requires the telecoms industry to think "a little bit differently", an Ericsson vice president has said.

Magnus Furustam, head of product area cloud systems, said that information governance and security are key when it comes to clouds.

Speaking at the Broadband World Forum, Mr Furustam told Cable.co.uk, "Clouds are by nature accessible, that's the whole point of clouds. You have to make them accessible, you can't lock them in.

"So information governance and security are key when it comes to clouds."

Speaking at a briefing at the event, he said, "You need to really think a little bit differently when it comes to security.

"Basically you need to secure the stored data as well as the configuration data."

Mr Furustam, who cited the leaking of documents by whistleblower Edward Snowden as an example, told us, "If you think about security today a good analogy is really your house or your apartment, you lock that, and maybe you have an alarm. So what you basically so is you have some kind of perimeter protection.

"You can't do that with clouds really, the Snowden case showed that.

"He borrowed somebody's keys, or stole somebody's keys, went into the system, took out all the information that he needed, closed the door so to say, and left and nobody noticed.

"In a cloud environment you need to secure the integrity and confidentiality of whatever data is stored in that infrastructure and that can be programmes that are instructing the computer networking, as well as stored data in terms of files."

Mr Furustam, who described a "stepwise evolution" towards a cloud-based global network said Ericsson's partnership with company Guardtime - announced last month - meant the company could monitor network data in real-time, ensuring security.

He said: "We are partnering with a company called Guardtime where we simply enable real-time integrity and confidentiality of any kinds of data in a network.

"So back to the Snowden case, what this means is that even though somebody has stolen your keys to your house, or the Snowden case he used somebody else's keys and went in and stole data, you would notice that in real time.

"Somebody is looking at this data - is that person allowed to do that? Is that person allowed to take this data away? And you will see this in real time. So basically you could have stopped the Snowden case.

"Back to your house or apartment, this means that if someone is moving a chair from one position to another, you would notice that."

Last month Ericsson announced its partnership with Guardtime, using the latter's Keyless Signature Infrastructure (KSI) technology that can provide evidence that will hold in court.

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