SSPM (full name SaaS Security Posture Management, namely SaaS security configuration management), Gartner defines it as “a tool for continuously assessing security risks and managing the security posture of SaaS applications.” Its core functions include reporting the configuration of the local SaaS security settings and providing suggestions for improving the configuration and reducing risks.
Currently, the main pain points of enterprise SaaS application security stem from:
Lack of control over the growing assets of SaaS applications;
The SaaS application life cycle (from purchase to deployment, operation and maintenance) lacks governance;
Lack of visibility into all configurations of SaaS application assets;
Cloud security skills gap;
The heavy and overwhelming workload brought by hundreds to thousands (or even tens of thousands) of settings and permissions.
Although the native security controls of SaaS applications are usually strong, the responsibility for ensuring that all configurations (from global settings to individual user roles and permissions) are set up correctly falls on the organization. The corporate security team needs to be responsible for understanding each application, user, and configuration, and ensuring that they fully comply with industry and corporate policies. Otherwise, only an unsuspecting SaaS administrator can change settings or share error reports, and highly confidential corporate data will be exposed.
Some excellent SSPM solutions provide comprehensive visibility into the enterprise’s SaaS security posture, check whether they comply with industry standards and corporate policies, and some can even provide the ability to repair from within the solution. For example, automatic repair of misconfigurations in complex SaaS assets can significantly improve the efficiency of security teams and protect corporate data. However, not all SSPM solutions are so good.
When choosing an SSPM solution, there are several things that need special attention:
Visibility and insight
Enterprises need to conduct comprehensive security inspections to clearly understand the enterprise SaaS environment
For the SSPM solution, the primary function is to be able to integrate with all SaaS applications of the enterprise. Each SaaS application has its own framework and configuration. As long as it has access to users and enterprise systems, it should be included in the monitoring scope of the enterprise organization. Because any application may bring risks, even non-critical business applications also have risks. It should be noted that usually smaller applications can be used as an entry point for attacks.
Another measure of an excellent SSPM solution is the breadth and depth of its security inspections. The areas and configurations that SSPM should track and monitor include: identity and access management, malware protection, data leakage protection, auditing, access control for external users, Privacy control, compliance policy, security framework and benchmarks, etc.
Continuous monitoring and repair
Respond to threats by continuously monitoring and quickly fixing misconfigurations
Repairing problems in the business environment is a complex and delicate task for corporate organizations. The SSPM solution should provide a deep context for each configuration, and enable enterprise organizations to easily monitor and set alarms to help security teams keep abreast of the situation, communicate effectively, quickly close vulnerabilities, and protect enterprise systems. The content of continuous monitoring specifically includes: 24/7 continuous monitoring, activity monitors, alarms, repairs, and the ever-changing security situation over time.
Easy to deploy
Make it easy for security teams to add and monitor new SaaS applications
Enterprise SSPM solutions should be easy to deploy and allow security teams to easily add and monitor new SaaS applications. A good security solution should be easily integrated with enterprise applications and existing network security infrastructure to create a comprehensive defense against cyber threats. These functions mainly include: self-service wizard, powerful API, low false positives, non-intrusive, layered use, etc.
The SSPM solution is similar to daily “brushing teeth”, it is a basic requirement for companies to create a preventive protection state. An excellent SSPM solution can provide enterprise organizations with continuous and automated monitoring of all SaaS applications, and configure a built-in knowledge base to ensure the highest level of SaaS security and prevent the enterprise from encountering the next attack.