For IT and even QA managers, the question is much more related to how SaaS is adopted than just the concept itself. To avoid having headaches with the modernization of your IT structure with the help of SaaS, it is worth putting the following tips into practice:
Software as a Service (SaaS) allows the application to run on a remote server, giving the user the ability to periodically pay only for those features used in the subscription. Much more than a trend, SaaS has become a business advantage thanks to its scalability, flexibility, license cost reduction, automatic updates, and more that can be extremely useful in the IT universe.
However, there is a big reason why managers are afraid of moving to SaaS: data security. Companies fear that their data will be unsafe because it is not managed internally anymore – which is a big misconception. In fact, SaaS companies and cloud service providers, especially, have strict data security policies and are rarely prone to breaches in their systems. All in all, the responsibility is split between the customer and the SaaS provider, and each party has to know how and what their role is in ensuring a safe environment.
Since this type of service has taken the place of on-prem applications, it is more than natural to imagine that the entire information security framework has also been transformed, right? And that leads us to the following question: How should managers and employees adopt it within their organization?
Choose a trustable SaaS platform
Regardless of the type of platform you want to acquire – quality management software, ERPs, codeless test automation platforms, and so on – it is your responsibility to check if the SaaS is deployed on a safe cloud server, has the proper certifications, ensures data privacy, etc.
Control access to cloud computing within your organization
A recent survey by Ponemon Institute showed that negligent employees are the biggest threat to endpoint security, thus controlling and monitoring how your employees use a SaaS is probably the most important safety measure. For example:
- Setting a time and day of allowed access with automatic locking systems
- Security enhancement layers such as two-step authentication
- Hierarchical access according to the employee’s function within the company
- A possibility of access to systems and applications via mobile or just through corporate computers
Additionally, frequently training your employees about the responsibilities of access and use of computers or phones, should be a daily practice in organizations that want to avoid IT security headaches.
Think about the architecture before implementing a SaaS
Choose a SaaS provider that can fully integrate its platform with your enterprise – with identity verification services, positioned behind the firewall of enterprise networks. It’s no use worrying about software alone. All of your IT architecture must be taught to work well while monitoring 24/7 – it is essential. This way you can receive security alerts at the slightest signal of suspicious activity, and take the necessary measures to avoid great damage.
Avoid recording too sensitive or critical data
The greatest feat of systems developed in the cloud is the possibility of integrating different data from various sources. That means you can work with almost all of your company’s most critical information on a single platform. But that does not necessarily mean that you need to leave them saved in your virtual environment. It is worth having a filter and another type of storage to keep the keys on what is most precious to the company.
Make sure you have extra internal security solutions
In general, data security solutions are included in the cloud service provider packages that host SaaS platforms. However, if they are not automatically present, do not give up features like periodic backups and regular audits. It is always good to remember that governance in information security is a kind of race against the development of new tactics by hackers and other types of virtual criminals.
What to expect from a complete SaaS testing solution
In short, SaaS is safe as long as the company knows how to implement it. However, you should not let yourself be over-cautious before you know what an on-demand solution can offer in terms of security.
Safety in a SaaS codeless test automation platform
As a test automation platform, we understand how sensitive our customer’s data is – in fact, it is the top concern of most QA managers. There is a latent need to automate and move to SaaS, but at the same time, the fear of exposing private information prevents most managers to take this step further and enhance their QA process. Below you will find three ways our SaaS testing platform ensures a safe network, followed by three extra barriers to granting a secure access to your network.
ISO 27001 is an international standard published by the International Standardization Organization (ISO) and describes how to manage the security of information in an organization. It enables organizations to obtain certification, which means that an independent certifying body has confirmed that an organization has implemented information security in accordance with ISO 27001.
End-to-end encryption cycle
Both the data in transition and the data at rest (sensitive information like users credentials) are encrypted end-to-end, plus all interaction with servers happens over Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) transmission, which is the standard security technology for establishing an encrypted link between a web server and a browser. This link ensures that all data passed between the web server and browsers remain private and integral. SSL terminates within the Amazon Web Services (AWS) network.
AWS secure infrastructure
Extra Steps to Secure a Safe SaaS Network Access
Customer specific VPC option
As an extra step of security, the customer can have a virtual private cloud on Amazon. Inside, users will be able to have complete control over their virtual networking environment, including a selection of their own IP address ranges, the creation of subnets, the configuration of route tables, and network gateways. This VPC can also be connected using a VPN connection into the network.
Strong authentication to network resources
Our platform may set up a proxy server on the way into the user’s network that requires a two-factor authentication (2FA). We offer the user to login with username and password, and once this authentication is completed, it will send us a token which will be used as a second factor to grant the company access to our platform.
Network IP whitelisting
IP whitelisting means that on your firewall, you can whitelist a single IP address which allows a computer from that IP to enter this network. TestCraft, for example, has a single IP, and the access to the customer’s network is restricted to this unique IP address. Whitelisting will then prevent any other IP address to bypass your firewall.
QA managers are advised to follow or check for these guidelines when they wish to implement a secure SaaS platform. There are several options for test automation platforms in the market, and one should evaluate which solution fits best with the company’s safety architecture. The liability of ensuring a safe SaaS falls on the hands of the QA manager, the employees, and the SaaS service provider – and each party should know and practice their duties to guarantee no security breach.