IT wrestles with HCI security

IT leaders are wrestling with Hyper-Converged Infrastructure (HCI) Security according to the latest research from data security experts, WinMagic (www.winmagic.com).
 
The research found that revealed flexibility (65%), performance (58%) and availability (46%) as the highest ranked benefits of the technology, yet only 15% of IT Decision Makers (ITDM) report having HCI as part of their infrastructure, citing complex infrastructure and maintaining security as concerns about its future use in their organisation.
 
ITDMs are clearly seeing the benefits of HCI technology, so what is holding them back from using it more?  According to the research, concerns around expanding their use of HCI, with complexity leading at 45% and security a close second (43%) were cited as the main stumbling blocks. 
 
It seems that in some things simplicity can make things harder.  Whilst deployed with the correct controls HCI can be one of the best ways to simplify data centre infrastructure, its dynamic nature and reliance on virtual machines, creates challenges such as how to unify security and control data sprawl as IT departments struggle to maintain control as workloads expand.
 
According to the research security shortcuts are creating risks with a quarter (27%) of respondents admitted to not limiting access to the control planes of their Hyper-Converged Infrastructure.  Rather than encrypting individual workloads, many are simply encrypting the whole platform, ignoring the need for encryption and access controls to certain sensitive datasets.
 
“Hyper-Converged Infrastructure offers a wide range of benefits for IT departments and they want to embrace the technology, but often the security and management concerns make it feel like a risky investment,” said Mark Hickman, Chief Operating Officer at WinMagic.
 
“The truth is the benefits can be easily realized by IT teams, if a unified approach is taken to security and management, through a single tool where they are dependent, not separate tasks.  In reality this approach should extend beyond the hyperconverged hardware to the whole infrastructure whether on premises or in the cloud.  WinMagic SecureDoc Enterprise offers 100% encryption of endpoints, data centre and cloud workloads with a single platform, meaning data is protected across the enterprise while IT leaders are free to deliver
the enormous benefits of hyperconvergence.”