Optimizing Security for Virtualized Environments

Virtualized servers and desktops have increasingly become the norm in many enterprise environments. As a result, vendors are beginning to adapt their endpoint protection platforms to meet these changing needs. But not all security vendors are created equal. Organizations need to be aware of the different approaches available among vendors, and can’t assume that their current vendor provides the best solutions for virtualized environments.

One issue is that while virtualization is happening rapidly, most host-based protection software was designed with the notion that the security stack would be running on dedicated hardware. This creates a significant impact on performance when, for example, multiple scheduled scans are initiated virtually on the same physical hardware. Techniques such as randomized scanning, scanning of offline guests, gold image whitelisting, scan result catching and randomizing signature updates can provide improved performance, and are among the ways that McAfee is looking to address the need to optimize security for virtualized environments.

In a recent Gartner study, Make Optimizing Security Protection in Virtualized Environments a Priority, analysts outlined a framework to evaluate EPP solutions. The bottom line: explicit support and optimization for virtualized environments is an essential part of an effective endpoint security tool evaluation.

Gartner’s Recommendations:

  • Look for solutions that natively support and optimize anti-malware scanning in a virtualized environment in your EPP evaluation for servers and desktops.
  • Favor vendors that offer solutions spanning physical and virtual servers and desktops with a consistent management and reporting interface and a consistent way to set policies across all environments.
  • To reduce complexity and consolidate licensing costs, use the same anti-malware-scanning solution across desktops and servers – virtual or physical – where possible.

As a core component of our Security Connected framework, McAfee Endpoint Protection provides continuous, updated and powerful security for all endpoints, including the latest virtualized environments. We also unify endpoint security and management with McAfee ePolicy Orchestrator, our web-based management console that enhances efficiency, reduces costs, and helps maintain and prove compliance.

Take a look at our website for more on how McAfee Endpoint Protection can help secure your virtualized environments, and be sure to follow us on Twitter at @IntelSec_Biz for the latest updates on McAfee news and events.

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