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CloudTrail sent in by web bazaar to flag up greedy API slurpings

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re:Invent 2013 No one trusts the cloud, not even people who have built their businesses entirely on it – or so Amazon has indicated with a new tool that reveals how individual Amazon Web Services systems are being accessed.

For organizations that have sat themselves in Bezos & Co's cloud, the web bazaar announced a new security utility called CloudTrail, which monitors calls to the AWS software interfaces.

The service gives sysadmins a clear idea of what exactly is accessing the cloud's resource at any one time. Security logs are stored in Amazon's mainstay S3 service with the option of being archived to its long-term low-cost Glacier storage as well.

"It is a service that logs all API calls you are making to AWS resources," said Amazon Web Services chief Andy Jassy in a keynote speech at his company's re:Invent shindig. "We're excited to offer it today."

Amazon said the tool can be used to help businesses meet regulatory compliance requirements; perform resource lifecycle tracking; troubleshoot operations; and work out when jobs are failing due to improper security permissions.

Initially CloudTrail will log API calls to a decent portion of the alphabet soup of Amazon services, including EC2, EBS, RDS, VPC, IAM, STS, and Redshift.

Though the service is free, admins will have to pay for S3 storage charges, and the simple notification service for feeding information between services.

The technology is initially available in the company's US East and US West data center regions, the company said. Logs from CloudTrail can be grokked by analytics tools including 2nd Watch, Alert Logic, Boundary, Cognizant, Datapipe, Foghorn Consulting, Loggly, StackDriver, Splunk, and Sumo Logic.

Though this won't solve some people's cloud fears, it demonstrates that Amazon is making a concerted push further into enterprises with the types of dull-but-worthy features that provide oversight, and help admins create a paper trail to protect them from screw-ups that aren't their fault. ®

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