If you have followed the news over the last couple of weeks, many companies have acquired container or microservices companies to bolster up their portfolio for what is to come in the future. Why is this such a huge topic now?
If you look at the below statement from the Cloud Native Computing Foundation (CNCF), it becomes clear that Kubernetes is mainstream already, despite the fact, that the adoption in enterprises may lag behind the development a bit. If you look at the CNCF report attached, many of the big software and hardware players (including RedHat, IBM, VMware, Microsoft and of course Google) invest heavily in the development of Kubernetes.
This means that those companies believe in cloud native applications and containers and they are inline with developers around the globe that adopt cloud native development faster than anyone could have imagined.
What does this mean for us IT security and networking folks?
- We deal with another, even more dynamic environment than we used to deal with in good (old) cloud and virtualised infrastructures
- We deal with new security challenges around protecting those environments
- We deal with container orchestration platforms that connect to our existing estate and we do not see what is going on
- We deal with a amount of automation unseen before and this puts further pressure on networking and security to do the same thing
- We deal with a complex platform (Kubernetes, OpenShift), that is not secure by default and has its own security challenges (see video, video, video, video)
I would recommend to see the advantages in containers and embrace them, although new platforms and services will make our lives harder and demand new capabilities to protect them, there is great benefit in using them and it will enable us to go down automation road much further than we do today.
The largest CNCF-hosted project is Kubernetes. It is the most widely used container orchestration platform today, often described as the “Linux of the cloud”. CNCF’s efforts to nurture the growth of Kubernetes span a wide range of activities from organizing and running the enormously successful Kubecon + CloudNativeCon events to creating educational MOOCs and end user communities to certifying that different versions of Kubernetes are conformant. We even underwrite security audits. All of this is funded by CNCF’s membership dues and revenues from sponsorship and registration at our conferences.