Cloud / March 3, 2023

What Is Hybrid Cloud Visibility?

The rise of hybrid cloud computing has brought about a new era of flexibility and scalability for businesses. However, the increasing complexity of hybrid and multi-cloud environments is creating new challenges for IT and security teams in terms of visibility and control. This blog will explore the importance of hybrid cloud visibility, its benefits, and how it can be achieved.

What Is Hybrid Cloud Visibility?

Hybrid cloud visibility refers to the ability of IT and security teams to monitor and manage their hybrid cloud environment effectively. Before we jump into details, let’s first define the terms we will use in this blog.

Public Cloud Definition

A public cloud is a computing service provided by a third party that is accessible to the public across the internet. There are different types of services available through the public cloud, ranging from storage capabilities to mission-critical applications. One defining characteristic of a public cloud is that the cloud-based hardware, storage, and network devices are shared between multiple organizations.

Private Cloud Definition

The main difference between private and public cloud platforms is that a private cloud serves a single business or organization. Private cloud servers are typically located in on-site data centers but can also be hosted by third-party providers in co-location data centers. Regardless of where the actual computers are located, the hardware, software, devices, services, and infrastructure are maintained on a private network dedicated entirely to a single organization.

Hybrid Cloud Definition

A hybrid cloud approach combines the best of both these approaches to create a more flexible solution that allows organizations to get value from their existing on-premises and private cloud infrastructure while using the public cloud to host specific applications and provide the elasticity to scale up or down as needed. The management of a hybrid cloud infrastructure is split between an organization’s IT team and multiple cloud providers. However, ultimate responsibility remains with the organization itself.

How Does Hybrid Cloud Visibility Work?

Hybrid cloud visibility means having a complete and up-to-date understanding of all the resources, applications, and services that are running across multiple on-premises, private, and public cloud platforms. This includes visibility into on-premises, virtual, and cloud infrastructure and the data in motion traversing this infrastructure. The goal of hybrid cloud visibility is to provide IT and security teams with the necessary insights to monitor, manage, and secure their hybrid cloud infrastructure effectively. However, this goal is not easy to achieve for several reasons, two of the most significant of which are:

  1. Each cloud platform vendor has their own monitoring and management tools. While most of these tools are powerful and easy to use, they are specific to the cloud vendor’s platform and do not work across multi-cloud or on-premises platforms.
  2. Each additional platform in an organization’s infrastructure adds more tools and complexity that makes achieving hybrid cloud visibility more difficult and increases the chances of, for example, configuration errors that can impact performance, user experience, and security.

Benefits of Hybrid Cloud Visibility

There are several hybrid cloud benefits for organizations, including:

  1. Better security: By having a complete view of all the resources, services, and data in motion across on-premises and cloud platforms, security teams can identify and respond to security threats more quickly, thus minimizing the risk of data breaches and other security incidents.
  2. Improved compliance: With better visibility, IT teams can ensure that their hybrid cloud environment complies with regulatory, industry-specific, and internal standards. This visibility is critical in reducing the risk of penalties and legal action for noncompliance.
  3. Better user experience: Having visibility into the availability and performance of their hybrid cloud environment, IT teams can identify and resolve issues such as potential traffic bottlenecks that can impact application performance and stability. Eliminating or addressing these issues more quickly improves user experience, an increasingly important metric by which IT teams are measured.
  4. Better decision-making on cloud utilization and costs: With better visibility, IT teams can make more informed decisions on how to optimize their infrastructure and improve the overall efficiency and effectiveness of their operations. This also enables IT to identify opportunities to optimize traffic access, aggregation, and dataflows to reduce compute, bandwidth, and data movement costs between platforms.

How to Achieve Hybrid Cloud Visibility

Achieving hybrid cloud visibility can be a complex and challenging task, but there are several steps that organizations can take to achieve this goal:

  1. Assess your current cloud and network monitoring tools: The first step toward achieving hybrid cloud visibility is to enumerate which on-premises and cloud-native tools are already available and then identify gaps between these existing capabilities and those needed to manage the hybrid infrastructure.
  2. Access and aggregate all hybrid data: Ensuring that an organization can access and aggregate all the data on the hybrid infrastructure is the next step in achieving hybrid cloud visibility. This will likely mean using a mix of physical and virtual TAPs (traffic access points) and techniques such as traffic mirroring to access all this data.
  3. Use a unified management platform: A unified management platform can provide IT and security teams with a single view of their hybrid cloud environment. This not only reduces the number of management tools needed but also, for example, typically provides visual tools that enable the orchestration of dataflows across these platforms.
  4. Implement a cloud management solution: A cloud management solution can automate the deployment, monitoring, and management of a hybrid cloud environment. This can save significant time and manual effort as well as reduce misconfiguration errors.
  5. Monitor cloud usage and costs: IT teams must actively monitor their cloud usage and costs monthly to ensure that these services are appropriate to their needs and that they are not overpaying for services that are not being fully utilized. A single cloud management solution can be a critical component in effective cloud cost control.
  6. Use cloud observability and analytics tools: Cloud observability analytics tools can provide IT teams with easily understood dashboard-style insights into their hybrid cloud environment. These insights can help to identify performance and user experience issues and make data-driven optimization decisions about their infrastructure.
  7. Improve security posture: Implementing a consistent hybrid security posture can be a major challenge, as each platform has its own set of tools and capabilities. However, by implementing best practice security practices enforced by the correct policies and tools, it is possible to implement a uniform — and improved — security posture across their entire hybrid cloud infrastructure.


In today’s world, hybrid cloud infrastructure is the de facto computing model. Having clear, comprehensive, and consistent visibility into this infrastructure has therefore become mission critical in ensuring that an organization’s hybrid cloud infrastructure is scalable and secure. Following the guidelines outlined in this article and leveraging proven platforms, established best practices, and tools, organizations can navigate the complexities of a hybrid cloud environment and ensure the success and security of their infrastructure.

Gigamon is the leading provider of hybrid cloud visibility solutions and works with over 4,000 of the leading government and commercial organizations around the world to achieve this goal. For more information on how Gigamon can help your organization achieve hybrid cloud visibility, please visit or download the “Definitive Guide to Hybrid Cloud Visibility.”

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