Micro-segmentation is an emerging security best practice that offers a number of advantages over more established approaches like network segmentation and application segmentation. The added granularity that micro-segmentation offers is essential at a time when many organizations are adopting cloud services and new deployment options like containers that make traditional perimeter security less relevant.
Infrastructure visualization plays an essential role in the development of a sound micro-segmentation strategy. When it’s done well, visualization makes both sanctioned and unsanctioned activity in the environment easier for IT teams to identify and understand.
This added visibility enables IT teams to define and fine-tune micro-segmentation policies that can both alert on and blocked un-sanctioned activity. Micro-segmentation policies can take many forms, including controls based on environment type, regulatory scope, application, and infrastructure tier. Micro-segmentation also makes it possible to apply the principle of least privilege more extensively in data center and cloud environments, providing a more effective defense posture than traditional network-layer controls alone.
It’s important to select a micro-segmentation approach that works consistently across cloud providers. By decoupling security from the cloud infrastructure provider, organizations can prevent vendor lock-in from driving costs up and avoid unnecessary complexity when mergers and acquisitions create mixed cloud environments.
When implementing micro-segmentation, it’s important to select a future-proof approach that can be applied to emerging deployment models like containers in addition to standard cloud instances, virtual machines, and bare-metal servers.
Micro-segmentation is a new concept to many, but it is becoming an increasingly important tool for IT teams challenged with keeping security policies and compliance in step with the rapid rate of change in today’s dynamic data center, cloud, and hybrid cloud environments.