Trend Micro looks to bolster cloud security

Perhaps one of biggest inhibitors to the adoption of cloud services by end users, aside from concerns about the potential for downtime and redundancy, is the security of stored data. In fact, according to a the results of a recent survey of more than 1,200 IT professionals, 46 percent of respondents said that concerns about the security of proprietary data or applications hampered their organization’s adoption of cloud services.

Trend Micro, a provider of Internet content security and threat management solutions for businesses and consumers, is attempting to remedy these concerns as it announced earlier this week that it is launching two new cloud security offerings optimized for Amazon Web Services (AWS), one of the largest providers of cloud services in the world. These new offerings, Deep Security-as-a-Service and a new version of its cloud encryption solution, SecureCloud 3.5, were officially debuted at AWS Summit 2013 in San Francisco.

“The big driver for us in continuing to innovate and improve around cloud is just the ongoing desire by customers across the board to continually use and expand their use of cloud,” said Steve Neville, director of cloud & data center security at Trend Micro. “People really are still learning about what’s required and how the cloud is not really much different, but different from data centers in terms of security.”  

According to Neville, Deep Security-as-a-Service is focused on protecting the servers that “live inside” AWS, providing host-based intrusion detection, firewall, whitelisting, anti-malware, and integrity monitoring as capabilities users can deploy “instantaneously” inside of Amazon. “That’s the actual server protection side of things, which will give protection to the applications that are deployed in the cloud,” he said.

In addition, Neville said that while Trend Micro currently provides data volume encryption that protects information residing in the cloud, SecureCloud 3.5 will add boot volume encryption capabilities that prevent enterprise applications from potentially leaking data from the data volume to the boot volume, thus assuring users that “all of their data is protected across the board and across any cloud deployment.”   

Neville said that Trend Micro, which has been around for about 25 years, has really been one of the pioneers when it comes to protecting data in the cloud.  

“We were a first mover to the cloud in terms of the way we deploy and gather information for our smart protection network,” Neville explained. “We are a first mover in our endpoint protection, moving a lot of the data processing that used to be on the client for anti-malware scanning to the cloud and we were a first mover around doing things in the cloud security arena specifically around providing a solution that can span the physical, virtual and cloud environment in a single platform.”     

Neville said that one of the biggest challenges for the company in developing cloud security products has been trying to get a handle on the different types of ways that organizations want to use the cloud, which continues to evolve.

“Some of them want to use it for ad hoc testing or ad hoc deployments just for quick fixes for a lack of capabilities in their data centers,” he said. “Other organizations are saying ‘look, I’m going to actually translate 30 percent of my data center to the cloud, I’m going to achieve redundancy and save on both (capital expenses) and (operational expenses) by increasing capacity while not increasing my onsite data center.’ Other customers we talk to are considering, very carefully, how they could singularly leverage the cloud in that they would discontinue the use of their primary data centers, move them to a more secondary role as they phase them out… to gain the benefits of what the cloud gives.”  

The company’s new Deep Security-as-a-Service offering is available as of Tuesday while SecureCloud 3.5 is expected to be released around the middle of May. 

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