The cloud’s meteoritic popularity in the last few years reflects a remarkable shift in how organizations can manage their data and resources.
However, beneath the surface of a seemingly straightforward transition to the cloud, there lies a web of hidden connectivity costs. Many organizations are unknowingly overspending on unnecessary cloud connectivity. In today’s economy where it's vital to control costs, organizations must prioritize identifying and reducing such connectivity.
In this blog post, learn the hidden costs of the cloud, where to look for unneeded connectivity, and how Illumio Zero Trust Segmentation can help you streamline your cloud connectivity — and its costs.
The hidden costs of cloud connectivity
The cloud promised cost savings, but for many organizations, the reality has been more complicated.
The cloud's pay-as-you-go model can lead to budget overruns, and unnecessary connectivity is a hidden contributor to these soaring costs. When various applications and workloads communicate excessively or inefficiently, it can lead to over-provisioning of resources, increased data transfer costs, and wasted computational power.
In fact, recent research points to organizations already dealing with these challenges:
Gartner predicts that through 2024, 60 percent of infrastructure and operations (I&O) leaders will encounter public cloud cost overruns that negatively impact their on-premises budgets.
A 2022 S&P Global Market Intelligence study found that 34 percent of enterprises said egress charges have affected their use of cloud storage.
The unnecessary cloud connectivity and fees you should identify and eliminate
Understanding the concealed connections and expenses associated with the cloud is vital for organizations aiming to migrate to the cloud, expand their cloud usage, and build a cloud strategy.
These are the top three types of unnecessary cloud connectivity your team should be looking for:
Orphaned resources: One of the common culprits in unnecessary connectivity is orphaned resources, such as idle virtual machines or databases that are left running. These underutilized resources not only consume valuable cloud resources but can also lead to data transfer costs between different instances — and potential security risks.
Redundant data transfer: In a multi-cloud or hybrid cloud environment, organizations may have multiple data transfer pathways between applications and data storage. Without proper management, this redundancy can lead to increased data transfer costs without adding any value.
Inefficient communication: Applications that continuously send excessive data back and forth between each other can lead to unnecessarily high bandwidth consumption and associated data transfer costs.
In addition to getting visibility into extraneous connectivity, teams should also investigate these three types of costs and fees associated with the cloud that may not be immediately apparent:
Data transfer fees: Cloud providers often charge for data transfer between different services or regions. When data moves between cloud services, between regions, or in and out of the cloud, it incurs fees. This can be especially costly for businesses with high data transfer requirements.
Inter-service communication: As your cloud-based applications grow, inter-service communication can generate substantial costs. These expenses arise when various components of an application need to communicate with each other and data is sent across the network.
Lack of visibility: Poor visibility into network traffic can lead to over-provisioning of resources because you might not have a clear understanding of how data is flowing between your services. This can result in unnecessary expenses.
Beyond cost savings: The hidden cybersecurity risks of unnecessary connectivity
Threat actors love the cloud connections you’re not paying attention to. Every additional connection presents a potential entry point for breaches and ransomware.
While unnecessary connectivity can result in cost overruns, it also exposes critical assets and data to threats and allows cyberattacks an entry point from which to spread through the rest of the network.
Use Zero Trust Segmentation to find and close unneeded cloud connectivity
It’s essential that your organization has tools to get visibility into cloud traffic and eliminate unneeded connectivity — for cost savings and cybersecurity.
One of the best ways to do this is with microsegmentation, also called Zero Trust Segmentation (ZTS). ZTS continually visualizes how workloads and devices are communicating, creating granular policies that only allow wanted and necessary communication.
ZTS helps organizations cut cloud costs and, in the event of a cyberattack, automatically isolate the breach by restricting lateral movement proactively or during an active attack. While segmentation can be attempted with static, legacy firewalls, ZTS is simple in comparison.
ZTS with Illumio offers these benefits in the cloud:
Granular, end-to-end visibility: Illumio ZTS provides comprehensive visibility into network traffic flows and application dependencies across cloud, endpoints, and data centers, helping you better understand how data moves between services. This insight allows you to identify potential areas for cost reduction in the cloud and take action to optimize cloud resource allocation.
Cost reduction: By tightly controlling network traffic with Illumio ZTS, you can minimize unnecessary data transfer, leading to reduced data transfer fees. You can also allocate resources more efficiently which helps reduce overall cloud expenses.
Enhanced security: Because Illumio ZTS limits communication between different segments of your network, you can bolster security and reduce the risk of data breaches across your entire hybrid network.
Compliance benefits: For organizations in regulated industries, Illumio ZTS can assist in reaching and maintaining compliance. By isolating sensitive data, you can ensure it's not mingling with other services that don't need access, benefiting your budget and cyber resilience.
Increase your cloud ROI and security with Zero Trust Segmentation
In an era where cost optimization is critical for organizations, finding and reducing unnecessary cloud connectivity in cloud environments is a top priority. Illumio Zero Trust Segmentation offers a way to identify, restrict, and manage these unneeded connections. By implementing this approach, organizations can enhance their security posture, streamline network operations, and ensure their cloud investments have better returns.
Micro-Segmentation Is Helping Organizations Embrace Zero Trust Security
Over the last two years, organizations have turned to Zero Trust security and microsegmentation to better navigate the new normal of surging cyberattacks, cloud computing and work-from-anywhere business models.