The rising number of businesses and consumers heading to the cloud has pushed software as a service into the mainstream. With so much personal and corporate data sitting in service providers' servers, cyber-criminals will make them a priority target in 2012, hoping to find vulnerabilities in a security model that has grown faster than the development of cloud standards.
"If we were meteorologists, we’d definitely be calling for overcast with a chance of storms," risk consulting firm Kroll says in a recent commentary. Current surveys and reports show that companies are underestimating the importance of vetting service providers for their ability to provide security. As a result, data breaches in the cloud in 2012 will highlight the problems service providers pose to forensic analysis and incident response. While this could be considered part of the maturing process of a new technology, companies should be extra vigilant to avoid becoming the victim of a service provider dropping the ball.