AWS Security Review - Part 1

Security is of critical concern for applications deployed in the cloud. Cloud security is a set of processes and technologies aimed at addressing both external and internal risks to the security of a company. Cloud penetration testing can help determine if your company/application is vulnerable to cloud service misconfigurations.

Pentesters and security assessors utilise a variety of technologies to conduct examinations. The tools used differ according on the type of test. Only knowing how to utilise automated tools and give the results generated by those tools limits penetration testers and assessors ability to comprehensively evaluate systems. Testers with greater system experience, such as those who come from an IT or software development background or who have been pentesting for a long time and do security research, are more equipped to undertake in-depth system analysis.

What is cloud penetration testing?

The technique of finding and exploiting security flaws in your cloud infrastructure by simulating controlled cyber attacks is known as cloud penetration testing. A cloud security review is performed under strict guidelines from the cloud service providers like AWS, Azure and GCP by also following different benchmarks like CIS, OWASP, CWE. The main goal is to detect security flaws in your cloud service before hackers do. Depending on the type of cloud service and the provider, several manual techniques and automation tools may be utilised.

This blog discusses the most common AWS services that are reviewed as a part of a cloud pentest.

How secure is your AWS cloud

There are many cloud checklists and benchmarks that are used in external and internal testing which include both manual and automated testing methodology. Following are the cloud services to dig for most identified vulnerabilities:

Identity and Access Management (IAM)

AWS IAM provides fine-grained access control across all of AWS. With IAM, you can specify who can access which services and resources, and under which conditions. With IAM policies, you manage permissions to your workforce and systems to ensure least-privilege permissions.


AWS secures all infrastructure components, such as routers, switches, and data networks, using the shared responsibility paradigm. You have complete control over cloud access. Using Amazon VPC and safeguarding inbound and outgoing network traffic, you may set up network security.

Logging and monitoring

Logging and monitoring should be integral part of your IT governance. Troubleshooting technical difficulties is more difficult without signing in, and acquiring operational insight and information is nearly impossible.

AWS provides tools and features that enable you to see what’s happening in your AWS environment. These include, CloudTrail, CloudWatch and GuardDuty.

There are other services provided by the AWS like EC2, Lambda, WAF, Load Balancer, Congnito, EBS, and many more.There are many manual approaches require to test, validate the security issues in cloud services. In the next blog we will go through each service in depth.

Author: Praveen Sutar, Principal CyberSecurity Engineer, cyberSecurist Technologies


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