Share this post Despite all the benefits, virtualization has its risks. Unfortunately, many businesses don’t realize the security risks and believe they can use the same security techniques in virtualized environments as they do in real life.
This is not always true. Virtualization is more secure than traditional methods in certain ways, but it also has some vulnerabilities that need to be addressed. Many industry groups have examined the vulnerabilities and identified many. The following are the top priorities in security.
Attacks on the Denial of Service
A denial-of-service attack is a network overload, usually with botnets. This prevents legitimate access to your server. It exploits multiple hypervisor platforms simultaneously. Sometimes hackers may take over your server resources to use for other purposes. The attack will affect specific servers and applications, disrupting your online services.
Vulnerabilities in the Guest and Host Interactions
Any vulnerabilities that may arise when guests connect to your virtual server can be exposed. Any weaknesses in network protocols, email security, or internet security could lead to serious attacks on the virtual environment. This problem is exacerbated when the linkages between the guest and the host are broken.
Servers Hosting Different Workloads
Some businesses fail to distinguish mission-critical workloads and other workloads on the server. This creates a dangerous environment where critical workloads could be compromised or have other problems. Mixed trust levels on the same virtual server could lead to data being moved to a less secure server or could be accessed or modified by an administrator in an inappropriate way.
Virtual Networks are not visible and controlled easily
Most companies have strict security policies and enforcement policies for traffic over their internal network. Although communication between virtual machines can be seen, it is not always possible to monitor and control them using the existing security policies. This poses risks to the integrity and confidentiality of data stored on the server.
Virtual Machine Issues
If they aren’t addressed, there are several issues that can increase the usability and security of virtual machines. First, sensitive information can be compromised by virtual machines. The VM environment allows it to be easily transferred to another machine without anyone being aware. Uncontrolled proliferation of virtual machine is another problem. IT is not able to identify all machines on the network and there is a greater risk of unpatched machines or unsecured machines. It increases the risk of unpatched vulnerabilities or dormant VMs, which can pose a threat to the network if they are rediscovered.
These are only a few of the security holes that virtual machines can present. These are not the only security vulnerabilities that virtual machines can present. The Cloud Security Alliance and other industry organizations have identified more. You can still protect your VMs from security flaws.
Minimizing the risks
A thorough risk assessment of the VM system’s security weaknesses is the best way to ensure virtualized machines are secure. This could involve setting up a pentesting laboratory to identify vulnerabilities and then applying vendor guidelines to secure the system. Other mitigation techniques include:
Third-party tools can be used to protect the VMs.
To ensure data is not accessed in an inappropriate manner, it is important to establish role-based access policies.
Use encryption to protect data on virtual servers
To ensure IT knows exactly where sensitive data is stored and who has access to it when, IT must establish strict policies.
Policies for dealing with the decommissioning and destruction of encryption keys, and other security tools.
Regular audits of the virtualized environment are conducted to ensure compliance and identify any additional vulnerabilities.
If you want to reap the benefits from virtualization, it is important to integrate VM security into your overall security plan. Virtualization can be a boon for your organization if you understand the risks and take steps to mitigate them.