VMwareBy Nishant Arora,

Las Vegas : As cyber attacks gain momentum despite the technology giants investing over $100 billion a year to protect data breaches, the time is ripe to turn to basics and put a simple security hygiene in place, VMwares Chief Executive Officer Pat Gelsinger has emphasised.

“Attack factors have become more diverse. Fundamentally, we have failed the customers, as breaches are growing too fast for them to tackle,” Gelsinger told the audience as the company kicked off its annual ‘VMworld’ conference here on Monday.

According to Gelsinger, the Cloud infrastructure and business mobility leader has a three-pronged strategy to address the growing cyber threats.

“First is to secure the infrastructure, build and architect the data. The second is to deeply architect the entire ecosytem like controls, automation, validations and the security solutions, and then standardise those,” Gelsinger told the jam-packed Mandalay Bay Convention Centre that saw participation from over 20,000 attendees.

“Third, and the most important, is to turn to the basics. Learn from sport teams who follow the basic regimen over and over again. Every major breach in the last five years that made headlines happened because a simple cyber hygiene wasn’t followed somewhere,” the VMware CEO emphasised.

Gelsinger urged the tech industry to simplify the security solutions. “The role of the governments globally in making stronger cyber policies is equally important to ward off data breaches,” said Gelsinger.

“As enterprises the worldover move from data centres to Cloud and desktop to mobile, security has become paramount,” added Sanjay Poonen, COO, Customer Operations at VMware.

To bolster its claims, the company launched ‘AppDefense’ to protect applications running in either virtualised or Cloud environments.

The new security solution leverages the virtual infrastructure to monitor running applications and can detect and automate response to attacks that attempt to manipulate those applications.

“The growing frequency and cost of security incidents points to a fundamental flaw in security models that focus solely on chasing threats,” said Tom Corn, Senior Vice President, Security Products at VMware.

‘AppDefense’ delivers an intent-based security model that focuses on what the applications should do – the “known good” – rather than what the attackers do – the “known bad”.

“We believe it will do for compute, what VMware NSX and micro-segmentation did for the network — enable least privilege environments for critical applications,” Corn explained.

‘AppDefense’ enables customers improve the effectiveness of existing security controls.

It plans to integrate with IBM’s “QRadar” security analytics platform, enabling security teams respond to advanced and insider threats that cut across both on-premises and Cloud environments like IBM Cloud.

“The direct integration of ‘AppDefense’ with IBM Security technologies will allow additional analysis of this data by ‘Watson for Cyber Security’, which can provide analysts with a clearer understanding of the scope of advanced attacks,” said Marc van Zadelhoff, General Manager, IBM Security.

IBM Watson is an intelligent cognitive system. With it, people can analyse and interpret data, including unstructured text, images, audio and video and develop personalised solutions.

Meanwhile, global cyber security leader Trend Micro also announced that its “Deep Security” server security product is now available to customers of VMware Cloud on the market leader Amazon Web Services (AWS).

“VMware Cloud on AWS” brings VMware’s software-defined data centre (SDDC) to the AWS Cloud, allowing customers to run applications across VMware vSphere-based private, public and hybrid Cloud environments, with optimised access to AWS services.

“With millions of VMs secured and nearly 2.5 billion protection hours in the Cloud, we have unparalleled experience and expertise to help our customers as they take advantage of the new ‘VMware Cloud on AWS’ offering,” noted Steve Quane, Executive Vice President of Network Defence and Hybrid Cloud Security for Trend Micro.

“VMware ‘AppDefense’ will infuse simple security hygiene into the entire IT ecosystem,” Gelsinger added.

(Nishant Arora is in Las Vegas at the invitation of VMware. He can be contacted at nishant.a@ians.in)