Confidential computing (CC) is a new technology promoted by Confidential Computing Consortium(CCC), a group of technology companies that wants to build tools that can help keep data in public cloud protected. The consortium consists of some big names such as Google, Microsoft, IBM, Intel, Alibaba, Arm, and Red Hat.
Confidential computing is a concept wherein encrypted data can be processed in memory to limit access to ensure data in use is protected. That must be quite hard to comprehend, isn’t it? Let’s make it simpler.
To break it down, when you open an app, your user data that the company has stored with them which is initially encrypted becomes decrypted, with a record of that data being stored on a computer or smartphone’s memory. A malware targeted at your device could enable a hacker to easily access the decrypted data when you open the app. Sounds simple, right? It is.
CC aims to solve this problem by making both software and hardware related changes to ensure data is protected while ‘in use’.
The objective here is to permit data to be processed in memory while that data is still encrypted. This will help reduce the exposure of any sensitive data. The only instance where data is kept unencrypted is when a code on the system provides access to any user. All this adds up to the fact that the data will be hidden even from the cloud provider as well.
With the advent of confidential computing, cloud providers want to tap into the market of the skeptics who still haven’t moved to the cloud due to data privacy concerns.
By encrypting all of the app’s computing processes, referred to as workloads, cloud providers can assure customers that their apps and data are secure. CC will also be able to work by using a trusted execution environment (TEE). All the major public cloud providers such as GCP(Asylo), AWS(Nitro enclaves), and Azure(Confidential Computing) have launched their versions of confidential computing.
Confidential computing has many uses such as
- Protect data from malicious attackers
- Data compliance with legislation such as GDPR
- Protection of data when migrating workloads to different environments
- developers could create applications that can be moved across different cloud platforms easily
Further, two organizations, each possessing their own data sets, could use confidential computing to train a machine-learning model without worrying whether the other firm could access each other’s data. Healthcare companies are the most reluctant in moving to cloud computing due to the sensitive nature of the data that they collect. Confidential Computing will help such industries transform into the cloud and reduce their costs drastically.
Does your business have sensitive data that requires extra armor?
If your business has data that requires protection over and above the industry standards, then a cloud that supports confidential computing might be your only way. HashRoot has worked with organizations of different scales and has delivered their IT needs through strategic planning, implementation, and consistent delivery.
Do you have a cloud infrastructure that contains critical and sensitive data? Does it require innovative planning and zero downtime with 24/7 monitoring? All of this, while being cost-effective?
HashRoot strives to deliver beyond.