Using automation and virtualization to protect data in the cloud

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The hot topic of security is only getting hotter as the surface for attacks expands due to new applications and data management for enterprise computing.

VMware Inc., a subsidiary of Dell Technologies Inc., is a leader in the cloud and virtualization software and services market. The company is seeking to find answers to security problems in the cloud.

“The thing that hasn’t been talked about [are the] ways to use the unique properties of the cloud to secure things,” said Tom Corn (pictured), senior vice president of security products at VMware. Corn talked with Jeff Frick (@jefffrick), co-host of theCUBE, SiliconANGLE Media’s mobile live-streaming studio, during the RSA Conference in San Francisco about his assessment of the security environment.

Breaking down the datacenter

Corn began his discussion about security wondering how companies are going to secure and protect data and applications in the cloud. Citing the interesting features that come with the cloud, like automation and virtualization, he stated that one of the largest gaps in security is of an architectural nature.

“We’re trying to protect applications and data, [and] we’re doing it by putting controls and products on machines and on network links. Those are not the same thing. Aligning controls to the infrastructure is not helping us align them to the applications and data we are trying to protect,” said Corn.

He pointed out the enormous opportunity to leverage cloud and virtualization, which he refers to as “the translation layer between the two” to unravel security in a “very meaningful way.”

Corn used an analogy that compared a data center to a city. In the past, there was only one door into the city. Now, with many entry points, there is a need to create logical boundaries around applications and critical data.

Microsegmentation breaks down the datacenter into logical parts while using high-level IT security policies, Corn said. “[This] allows us to align controls to the thing we are protecting. That’s the whole idea behind microsegmentation, which is a very, very big move today,” he added.

Corn stated that the upcoming year would be all about aligning security to applications. He also predicted that more security innovation will be coming from infrastructure players and cloud players.

Watch the complete video interview below, and be sure to check out more of SiliconANGLE’s and theCUBE’s on-the-ground coverage of the RSA Conference 2017.

Photo by SiliconANGLE