Protecting Data in Transit

Protecting Data in Transit

Data in transit is any data that is sent from one system to another. This includes communication between resources within your workload as well as communication between other services and your end-users. By providing the appropriate level of protection for your data in transit, you protect the confidentiality and integrity of your workload’s data.

Implement secure key and certificate management: Store encryption keys and certificates securely and rotate them at appropriate time intervals with strict access control. The best way to accomplish this is to use a managed service, such as AWS Certificate Manager (ACM). It lets you easily provision, manage, and deploy public and private Transport Layer Security (TLS) certificates for use with AWS services and your internal connected resources. TLS certificates are used to secure network communications and establish the identity of websites over the internet as well as resources on private networks. ACM integrates with AWS resources, such as Elastic Load Balancers, AWS distributions, and APIs on API Gateway, also handling automatic certificate renewals. If you use ACM to deploy a private root CA, both certificates and private keys can be provided by it for use in EC2 instances, containers, etc.

Enforce encryption in transit: Enforce your defined encryption requirements based on appropriate standards and recommendations to help you meet your organizational, legal, and compliance requirements. AWS services provide HTTPS endpoints using TLS for communication, thus providing encryption in transit when communicating with the AWS APIs. Insecure protocols, such as HTTP, can be audited and blocked in a VPC through the use of security groups. HTTP requests can also be automatically redirected to HTTPS in Amazon CloudFront or on an Application Load Balancer. You have full control over your computing resources to implement encryption in transit across your services. Additionally, you can use VPN connectivity into your VPC from an external network to facilitate encryption of traffic. Third-party solutions are available in the AWS Marketplace if you have special requirements.

Authenticate network communications: Using network protocols that support authentication allows for trust to be established between the parties. This adds to the encryption used in the protocol to reduce the risk of communications being altered or intercepted. Common protocols that implement authentication include Transport Layer Security (TLS), which is used in many AWS services, and IPsec, which is used in AWS Virtual Private Network (AWS VPN).

Automate detection of unintended data access: Use tools such as Amazon GuardDuty to automatically detect attempts to move data outside of defined boundaries based on data classification level, for example, to detect a trojan that is copying data to an unknown or untrusted network using the DNS protocol. In addition to Amazon GuardDuty, Amazon VPC Flow Logs, which capture network traffic information, can be used with Amazon EventBridge to trigger detection of abnormal connections–both successful and denied. S3 Access Analyzer can help assess what data is accessible to who in your S3 buckets.

Dhaval is a seasoned Solutions Architect with expertise in designing, implementing, securing, and managing enterprise cloud computing solutions for customers.