Super Bowl XLIX recently drew over 100 million viewers, making it the most watched broadcast in U.S. television history. This massive American football event also witnessed some impressive statistics: most touchdown passes by a quarterback across his SuperBowl history (13), longest punt (64 yards), and the largest second-half deficit overcome to win the game (10 points). Numbers are a powerful way to re-tell the story, and statistics junkies aren’t the only ones who realize that. We asked a dozen forward-thinking CIOs what metrics they request from their security teams when it comes to cloud use in their environment, and this is what they had to say.

These are the top cloud stats CIOs say they need to know:

  • Cloud Usage across the Organization
    “Not estimates, not guesswork, we want the real deal. I need to get accurate cloud usage statistics in order to gauge the real extent of cloud’s reach within my organization. As we try to encourage innovation and better serve our customers (employees), we’re looking for cloud services that are growing within business units so we can evaluate them and officially adopt and promote them within the organization if they meet our security requirements. Some examples of the stats we’re looking for are: number of cloud services active across our company and the most used cloud services overall, by service category, and by department.”
  • Effectiveness of Current Policy Enforcement Measures
    “We’re currently enforcing cloud policies using a mixture of firewalls and proxies, but I need to quickly understand how effective these policies are. Which services are being blocked, what percentage of traffic is blocked from each office, are the policies enforced consistently across the globe?”
  • Cloud Risk Exposure
    “Cloud services can present risk from a variety of vectors. Services can be inherently risky due to poor security controls or onerous terms and conditions. Additionally, highly-secure services can present risk because they can be a source of data loss if accounts are compromised. I need to know which high-risk services are being used, by whom, and how much/what type of data is being uploaded into those services. I also need to understand if there are any patterns in cloud usage that show high likelihood of a data threat either because an account is compromised or there is an insider threat incident.”
  • Ongoing Changes Impacting the Business
    “Sometimes a fire pops up that we need to extinguish. Security vulnerabilities such as Heartbleed and Poodle caused headlines, but they also cause a bit of chaos as teams scramble to understand and minimize our exposure. We need immediate visibility into the scope of affected services that we are using, with statistics like: how many affected services are in use, how many users are there for each service, how much data is being sent to these services, and is there any usage that would indicate that a vulnerable service is actually compromised? As providers address the vulnerabilities, we need continuous data on which services remain vulnerable.”

When it comes to up-to-the-minute metrics, NFL sportscasters have the luxury of dedicated analysts who crunch the numbers and relay them to the commentators as the game is unfolding. These statisticians have developed a good sense of what statistics are relevant, interesting, and meaningful. Make sure you’ve got the right information to share with your CIO and up your cloud game this season.

Essential PowerPoint Template

Based on real presentations CIOs and CISOs have delivered at board meetings, get sample slides for presenting your cloud usage and security initiatives.

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