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Although the cloud computing model is considered to be a very promising internet-based computing platform, it results in a loss of security control over the cloud-hosted assets. This is due to the outsourcing of enterprise IT assets hosted on third-party cloud computing platforms. Moreover, the lack of security constraints in the Service Level Agreements between the cloud providers and consumers results in a loss of trust as well. Obtaining a security certificate such as ISO 27000 or NIST-FISMA would help cloud providers improve consumers trust in their cloud platforms' security. However, such standards are still far from covering the full complexity of the cloud computing model. We introduce a new cloud security management framework based on aligning the FISMA standard to fit with the cloud computing model, enabling cloud providers and consumers to be security certified. Our framework is based on improving collaboration between cloud providers, service providers and service consumers in managing the security of the cloud platform and the hosted services. It is built on top of a number of security standards that assist in automating the security management process. We have developed a proof of concept of our framework using. NET and deployed it on a test bed cloud platform. We evaluated the framework by managing the security of a multi-tenant SaaS application exemplar.
Date of Conference: 4-9 July 2011