Virtual Security Appliance From Kaspersky Finds Niche With VMWare

By | Feb 15, 2012

Security programs have always been both boon and bane for midsized business IT; while they're necessary to keep thieves and hackers away from sensitive data, they often seem to be more trouble than they're worth. Typical security consoles are unwieldy, "bolt-on" structures that don't play nicely with other parts of in-house systems and either have limited virtual server protection or none at all. Now, Kaspersky Lab has released its Kaspersky Security for Virtualization, a virtual security appliance that fully integrates with VMware vShield Endpoint.

I See Your (End)Point

While the new Kaspersky Lab offering works seamlessly with all other current Kaspersky products, according to a CTR article detailing the release, its Security for Virtualization also meshes seamlessly with VMWare's Endpoint offering. This integration gives users a unified management platform for all mobile, virtual and physical systems, described as a "single pane of glass." This pane of glass is the Kaspersky Security Center admin panel. It offers easy deployment, automatic updates and the ability to map both physical and logical structures.

While integration sounds promising, what's drawing the most attention from business is the limited amount of bulk that comes with Kaspersky Security for Virtualization. Instead of duplicating its anti-malware code on every virtual machine in a company's network, it operates on a single, centralized appliance, and rather than forcing IT admins to create silos for every platform, all data is fed directly to the virtual security appliance center where users can decide how best to manage their own security.

Kaspersky has a solid track record in network security and integration with VMware only makes sense if the company wants to get ahead in the virtual security world. The notion that this appliance is the be-all, end-all, and that it completely eliminates the issues found in most dedicated security programs is something that real-world use will have to bear out. Security appliances are only as powerful as their weakest point.

Virtual Crime on the Rise

In fact, 8 of out 10 businesses now see the security landscape as being more dangerous, according to a survey discussed in a recent Market Watch press release. The survey data shows that while innovations are on track to make data more accessible and mobile applications more powerful, security headaches for IT pros are also on the rise. Tim Herbert, vice president of research at CompTIA, says, "With more data being produced and touched by more people, the potential for data loss or leakage grows accordingly." Thus the need for data protection that goes beyond the local and the legacy.

One in five organizations surveyed experienced some form of loss over the last year, with 65 percent losing financial data, 27 percent losing customer credit card information, and 26 percent losing intellectual property. The most difficult time to secure data, the survey found, is when it moves, either over an internal network or mobile devices. It's here that solutions like those of Kaspersky will find their greatest challenge--while building walls around stationary data is relatively simple, ensuring that what leaves and comes back is also protected is far more difficult. The integrated VMware virtual security appliance from Kaspersky Lab is a step in the right direction, and away from resource-hogging standard security measures. But it will have to evolve quickly; more data means more IT security concerns, especially as this data moves.

This post was written as part of the IBM for Midsize Business program, which provides midsize businesses with the tools, expertise and solutions they need to become engines of a smarter planet.

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