Serverless Security: Top 12 Risks & Mitigations Guide

Serverless Applications risks and mitigations

2: Broken Authentication

Since serverless architectures promote a microservices-oriented system design, applications built for such architectures may contain dozens (or even hundreds) of distinct serverless functions, each with a specific purpose. These functions are weaved together and orchestrated to form the overall system logic. Some serverless functions may expose public web APIs, while others may serve as an “internal glue” between processes or other functions. Additionally, some functions may consume events of different source types, such as cloud storage events, NoSQL database events, IoT device telemetry signals, or even SMS notifications. Applying robust authentication schemes—which provide access control and protection to all relevant functions, event types, and triggers—is a complex undertaking, and can easily go awry if not executed carefully.

3: Insecure Serverless Deployment Configuration

Cloud services in general—and serverless architectures in particular—offer many customization options and configuration settings to adapt for specific needs, tasks or surrounding environments. Certain configuration parameters have critical implications for overall security postures of applications and should be given attention, and settings provided by serverless architecture vendors may not be suitable for a developer’s needs. Misconfigured authentication/authorization is a widespread weakness affecting applications that use cloud-based storage. Since one of the recommended best practice designs for serverless architectures is to make functions stateless, many applications built for serverless architectures rely on cloud storage infrastructure to store and persist data between executions.