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Thales eSecurity 2018 Predictions: Both Established and Digitally Transformative Technologies will Increase Need for Data Security

VMblog Predictions 2018

Industry executives and experts share their predictions for 2018.  Read them in this 10th annual series exclusive.

Contributed by Sol Cates, VP of technical strategy, Thales eSecurity

Both Established and Digitally Transformative Technologies will Increase Need for Data Security

In 2018, I believe microservices and unikernels will be key technology platforms businesses adopt to deploy their workloads; concurrently, we will continue to see increased use of cloud technologies. But as the world becomes more digitized, there's a greater need to safeguard against unauthorized access and data breaches, defend against unauthorized code, protect customer data, ensure authenticity of connected components, and ensure security compliance. No matter which technology system or environment a business leverages, security is key to ensuring its data doesn't get compromised.

Below, I expand on my earlier thoughts and share additional data security predictions for 2018:  

The evolution of cloud security

  • With cloud providers increasingly required by enterprises and buyers to rely on protection through security capabilities, we can certainly expect to see the continued evolution of cloud security. The success of this evolution will be predicated on control. Effective cryptography, the right keys and identity, combined with further investment in enterprises, will ensure the cloud is more closely integrated with the enterprise world. Users are calling for the on-premises experience to be as unified as possible, particularly as workloads are spun out to the cloud as they are harmonised. Collective appetite for this enterprization will definitely be a hot topic on the digital transformation agenda.

Shift towards microservices

  • There has been a significant shift towards micro-services in the technology space, which has increased in popularity in the last couple of years, and is increasingly becoming the starting point for any newly designed application. Organizations are now starting to invest more widely in this framework. In 2018, we are likely to see a greater desire among organizations for more secure microservices, to meet controls and requirements of the business. With this comes lots of questions from security groups about where the trust is, how we do cryptography, how we protect information, etc.

Greater interest in unikernels

  • In 2018, we will see greater interest in unikernels, which are very similar to dockers, containers and other related concepts. The difference is that instead of maintaining an operating system with a kernel, in the unikernel, the application stack will have everything it needs already incorporated and nothing else, and is immutable by design. Interest in unikernels has increased due to reduced threat vectors around running an application.


  • There is a growing scramble around GDPR as organizations look to address technical aspects of the demands of the legislation. Questions will need to be answered regarding what data exists, how it can be handled, how scale can be added to all applications, which transformation initiatives can help with this, etc. In 2018, both the technical and process harmonization will have to happen.
  • It's not out of the question for us to see an increased volume of sophisticated attacks finding their way into cloud environments as organizations scramble to meet the demands of the regulation.

Resurrection of technologies

  • In 2018, we are likely to see the resurrection of technologies like PKI, which have been solely serviced for a long time with the same architecture and concepts. There is interest in the market in new ways to do PKI - rigid lines do not exist anymore and clearer lines of separation are needed to forge barriers of trust.
  • Encryption by default remains a trend, particularly data encryption for stored and utilized data.
  • Key management will remain a big challenge, with the significant desire and requirement for enterprises and for large cloud providers.
  • The full deployment of a private blockchain consortium is looking more likely, representing a move beyond proof of concept and towards things actually being transacted as opposed to just a novelty.
  • We are also likely to see value creation move closer to devices in the IoT and then aggregate back to a central repository.

About the Author

Sol Cates

Sol Cates, VP of technical strategy at Thales eSecurity

Sol Cates is the Vice President of Technology Strategy for Thales eSecurity and formerly Vormetric's Chief Security Officer. As VP of Technology Strategy, Sol and his team focus on bringing new innovations to market focused on the "underlying problems" of the industry, to bring security solutions to the security professional to help them become successful in today's challenging environment which they often have very little control over. As a former CISO and CIO, Cates has a unique perspective on how technology, people, process, and governance impact how successful security teams can solve real world problems. The technical depth and understanding of the information security space Cates has developed over the last 20+ years is rooted in the intelligence community, financial services industry and large enterprise organizations. He is sought after to speak publicly on a wide range of technology, regulatory, and strategy topics. Sol also regularly consults with CISOs, CIOs, investors, and industry analysts on IT and cyber security trends and issues.

Published Tuesday, January 09, 2018 7:56 AM by David Marshall
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