Cloud Security Alliance Launches Mobile, Innovation Initiatives

The Cloud Security Alliance (CSA) recently announced two significant new initiatives for 2012, addressing growing areas of need in cloud security -- mobile computing and innovation. CSA’s initiatives in these areas will focus on accelerating delivery of a trusted cloud ecosystem, furthering the organization’s mission to promote the use of best practices for providing security assurance within Cloud Computing, and to provide education on the uses of Cloud Computing to help secure all other forms of computing.

“Our active, lively group of more than 30,000 members fosters great discussion on a daily basis, and it’s clear there is demand for additional guidance and thought leadership in the areas of mobility and innovation,” said Jim Reavis, co-founder and Executive Director of the CSA. “We have listened to the challenges that both practitioners and innovators face, and we are excited to begin work in these crucial new areas.”

Innovation Initiative

The traditional market has produced inadequate information security for users of Cloud Computing. In addition, innovators must navigate a highly inefficient system to reach customers, gain access to capital, and develop “built in”, not “bolted on” security integration across all of their solutions. The CSA Innovation Initiative (CSA-II) aims to accelerate delivery of a trusted cloud ecosystem through the following:

  • Identify key structural issues related to trust and security that will inhibit the adoption of next generation information technology.
  • Articulate the guiding principles and objectives that IT innovators must address.
  • Incubate technology solutions that align with our principles and address the systemic gaps we have identified.

“Startup or big company, you will significantly benefit from this initiative,” said Jim Kaskade, EIR at PARC, a Xerox Company. “Just think of the value when you can take breakthrough ideas into a specialized security curriculum with mentorship from leaders in the industry. Then add capital resources, infrastructure, and access to early customer funnel. This will make a huge impact.”

“The rapid growth in cloud computing has far outpaced the measures many enterprises have put in place to protect their sensitive data in the cloud, and opened up a new set of unique challenges concerning data privacy and residency due to inadequate control and visibility,” said Pravin Kothari, Founder and CEO of CipherCloud. “The CSA Innovation Initiative is a catalyst that will encourage such innovation to protect enterprise data in the cloud, address security concerns, and accelerate cloud adoption."

The initiative will comprise both a working group within the CSA, as well as a for–profit entity working with innovators and other stakeholders. Innovators can develop relevant solutions with or without CSA assistance, and then request that the CSA-II working group assesses the value of the solution within the community. The CSA-II working group will also recommend resources to innovator, to help meet the challenges mentioned above. For more information, visit

Mobile Computing Initiative

Mobile computing is experience tremendous growth, while the devices are gaining significant power and capabilities. Personally owned mobile devices are increasingly being used to access employers systems and clouds of mobile devices are likely to be common. The CSA Mobile working group will be responsible for providing fundamental research to help secure mobile endpoint computing from a cloud-centric point of view, and is chartered to research the following areas:

  • Securing application stores and other public entities deploying software to mobile devices
  • Cloud-based management, provisioning, policy, and data management of mobile devices to achieve security objectives
  • Guidelines for the mobile device security framework and secure mobile cloud architectures
  • Best practices for secure mobile application development
  • Resolving multiple usage roles, e.g. personal and business use of a common device

“Mobile devices are the newest generation of communication and it’s nearly impossible to separate mobile technology from cloud solutions,” said David Lingenfelter, Information Security Officer for Fiberlink. “Making sure that security is an integral part of mobile technology can only be done by making sure that security in the cloud takes into account every aspect of mobile computing and this new working group will help bring those two worlds into alignment.”

“When diverse stakeholders come together to support a common objective, useful information is generated and exchanged. The development of the CSA Mobile Working Group is pivotal to identifying, developing, sharing industry and expert knowledge to support global adoption for implementation of the dynamic characteristics associated with integrating security of mobile cloud computing endeavors,” said Pamela Fusco, Principal, Booz Allen Hamilton.

"Mobile technology isn't just complementary to cloud; it is a forcing function for cloud adoption that brings a number of unique security challenges,” said K. Scott Morrison, CTO and Chief Architect, Layer 7 Technologies. “The CSA has been very successful defining the best practices for cloud security, making it the logical choice to help secure the new triangle of mobile, cloud and enterprise."

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