Assess the Maturity Level of Your Cloud Security Program

February 3, 2022 | By IANS Faculty
While cloud deployment rates have accelerated during the past two years, cloud security strategies often lag, leaving services misconfigured and vulnerable to security breaches.  Cloud migration requires understanding the shared responsibility model and key differences in tooling for traditional on-premises vs. cloud environments.  

Increasing cloud complexity presents different security challenges requiring a clear strategy to manage risk.  The Cloud Security Maturity Model (CSMM) was designed to identify the critical factors teams should consider when moving to the cloud. 

What Is the Cloud Security Maturity Model Diagnostic? 

The CSMM Diagnostic is a tool that provides comprehensive insights along with an assessment of the state of each respondent’s cloud security practices. Developed by IANS and Securosis, the Diagnostic measures respondents’ cloud security practices and determines which are most advanced. It also helps organizations evaluate their current security posture and navigate a path to more focused and efficient cloud security.  

Benefits of the Cloud Security Maturity Model Diagnostic

The CSMM Diagnostic is designed to help you quickly determine your place on the maturity model, pinpoint issues in your cloud security program and easily identify areas for improvement.  It helps you gain key insights about your organization’s cloud security strategy by enabling you to: 

  • Assess your cloud security maturity against 12 categories over three CSMM domains  
  • Visualize your cloud security journey and compare challenges across organizations 
  • Create focus with six key cloud deployment takeaways  
  • Establish a successful cloud center of excellence (CoE) model, without unnecessary compliance and business risk 

A Business Case for the CSMM Diagnostic 

The CSMM Diagnostic facilitates business-oriented discussions about cloud security requirements, priorities and strategies, highlighting key decisions stakeholders must consider in their journey toward increased automation via cloud service providers. This knowledge helps organizations assess their existing cloud security programs against their internal business requirements and those of industry peers, determine which maturity level is appropriate to the business, and make conscious and informed purchase and configuration decisions. 


Discover your Cloud Security Program’s Maturity Level 

The CSMM Diagnostic helps you uncover your organization’s cloud maturity level, learn about the challenges other organizations at your level face and find recommendations for your environment. 

The model is a set of guidelines—not all of which will work for every organization. Organizations should use the model as a starting point to make decisions about how much investment in each category makes sense for their environment, risk tolerance and capabilities. Not every organization has the resources or need to apply maximum security effort for each application or service. The CSMM helps teams understand risk in cloud deployments and evaluate different strategies to manage that risk, all within an organization’s capabilities and the level of exposure it considers acceptable. 

CSSM Self-Assessment Categories 

The CSMM Diagnostic poses questions covering three domains (Foundational, Structural and Procedural) and 12 cloud security categories. Organizations self-score their efforts using a scale of 1 (least mature) to 10 (fully mature). The CSMM Diagnostic was designed to identify the key factors teams should consider for their cloud security plan including: 

Foundational Domain: Practices that should be relatively mature in organizations, irrespective of cloud adoption. 

  • Account Security and Structure  
  • IAM  
  • Monitoring and Logging  
  • Incident Response 
Structural Domain: Traditional security activities, including infrastructure, data, workloads and applications running in the cloud. 

  • Network Security  
  • Workload Security  
  • Application Security  
  • Data Security  
Procedural Domain: Business processes and procedures, including DevOps adoption and security activities that change when migrating to the cloud. 

  • Security Integration with Architecture  
  • Risk Assessment and Provider Selection  
  • DevOps—Secure Modern Development Processes  
  • Compliance 
Cloud security can get complex fast, requiring a sound strategy for maturity.  Performing a cloud security maturity assessment is critical to determining whether your current security posture is strong, protects your businesses assets and ensures your future cloud initiatives are built on a solid foundation. 

Although reasonable efforts will be made to ensure the completeness and accuracy of the information contained in our blog posts, no liability can be accepted by IANS or our Faculty members for the results of any actions taken by individuals or firms in connection with such information, opinions, or advice. 

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