August 16, 2016

Software-defined data centers are emerging – security deemed more important than agility

Tomi Behm

Lead Security Services Product Manager, Tieto

In the world of datacenters and cloud computing, one of the most interesting new trends is software-defined data center, abbreviated SDDC in professional jargon.

Shortly put, it means that all elements required to build up a data center – computing, networking, data storage and security – are virtualized and delivered as a service. Sure, hardware is still down there somewhere, but deployment, provisioning, configuring and operating is abstracted and done with software.

This brings a lot of advantages. Software-defined infrastructure, when done right, can be fabulously cost efficient, agile and productive.

However, it seems that security is the top priority concern. A report by HyTrust reveals that a whopping 94 percent of executives think that security is more important than cost savings. No wonder: just like we've stated numerous times in this blog, security has become a strategic business factor.

Luckily, software-defined security helps to elevate security to the level it deserves.

In software-defined security model, protection is based on logical policies and business processes, not tied to any server or specialized security device. This is a leap forward from the physical security architecture. The traditional way tends to be rigid and complex and thus difficult to change according to ever-changing needs and circumstances.

Higher level of abstraction in security provides visibility and control. Unlimited sources of security input can be funneled into a policy-driven orchestration system, which greatly improves visibility and real-time situation awareness. Another great advantage is portability: business assets carry their security settings with them as they move or scale, no matter where they may physically reside. This is security for the age of cloud and mobile.

Software-defined security is an emerging technology and surrounded by hype, but advantages are clear. The biggest challenge is that it requires a new kind of thinking. And as always, there’s a human challenge – recruiting security pros is hard already and software-defined security means even more new requirements for security professionals.

In the bigger picture software defined-data centers verify the trend that we at Tieto Security Services strongly advocate: security must be a managed service. That’s the only way to survive in ever more complex cyber security landscape.

For more information about Tieto Security Services, please download our whitepaper.


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