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Container security: How does it work? 

Container security can compromise everything from the infrastructure they run on, to the applications they contain, here are some of the measure you can take.

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Container security is the process of implementing tools and policies that will guarantee that everything in your containers works as planned. This includes protecting the infrastructure, the software supply chain, and runtime.  

What are the containers? According to a Google report, everything Google does runs on containers. That means that containerization allows development teams to move faster, implement software effectively, and operate at an exceptional level.

A container refers to a standard unit of software that is able to package code and all its dependencies so it can operate accordingly and reliably from one computing space to another. For instance, A Docker container image is a standalone, executable package of software that includes everything necessary for an application to run from code, system tools, runtime, system libraries, and settings.

As this exceptional technology continues to grow, an emphasis on security is an absolute must. According to a Tripwire survey in 2018, up to 60% of organizations that used containers experienced a container-related security issue.

Bearing that in mind, the securing process is a continuous one. It has to be involved in the development process, automated to reduce the number of manual touchpoints and reach into the operation and maintenance of the core infrastructure. What does this mean? It means protecting your runtimes host, building pipeline images, and application layers. Thus, applying security as a constant delivery cycle means your business will lessen both risks and vulnerabilities across an ever-changing attack surface. Because container security can compromise everything from the infrastructure they run on, to the applications they contain, here are some of the measure you can take to avoid those risk:

Rethink operational culture and technical processes 

Adopting containers might bring unease among your existing culture and developing practices, and your current practices might not emulate in a containerized environment. To avoid that you should encourage, educate, and train your staff to reconsider the way they code and operate.

Use container-specific host Oss instead of general-purpose ones to reduce attack surfaces

As you probably know, a container-specific host operating system is minimalist hots OS developed only to run containers. Using OSs instead of general-purpose ones will greatly reduce attack surfaces.

Segment containers with the same sensitivity, purpose, and threat posture 

Grouping containers with the same sensitivity, purpose and threat posture on a sole host OS kernel will provide you additional thorough defense. By grouping them in this manner, it will make it more difficult for an attacker to expand potential threats to the rest of your containers. This method will also increase the probability that threats will be detected and contained.

Implement container-specific vulnerability management tools and processes to prevent risks

Traditional tools tend to make assumptions that are often misaligned with a containerized model and are often unable to detect weaknesses within a container. Make sure you implement a tool which can validate and execute compliance with secure configuration and best practices for images, including monitoring each image and preventing non-compliant images from being run.

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