Catbird Virtualization Security Product Tracks Virtual Machines

Catbird has updated its virtual security offerings to track virtual machines. Compatible with VMware, Citrix and Microsoft Hyper-V, VMShield 2.0 combines tracking capabilities with both activity monitoring on the network itself and continuous policy enforcement across hosts and clusters.

Catbird has updated its virtual security software platform to allow organizations to track virtual machines as they move and ensure security policies are continuously enforced.

Its new product, VMShield 2.0, includes technology the company refers to as V-Tracker, which works by assigning a unique identifier to each virtual machine.

"This identifier combines the usual attributes of the machine - e.g., MAC address - plus other proprietary attributes that Catbird determines through the Hypervisor APIs and our own network monitoring," said Michael Berman, CTO of Catbird. "This tracking enables not only simply following a machine through vMotion but also through other less-well behaved - and probably security breaching - virtual machine mobility events."

In combination with Catbird's TrustZones policy enforcer, virtual machines can stay monitored and protected via the Catbird Command Center, which validates and enforces policies for all VMs within a given TrustZone, Catbird officials explained. Non-compliant assets are immediately shut down by Catbird's automated quarantine mechanism.

VMShield 2.0 also provides intelligent packet filtering and deep packet inspection to detect suspect communication with VMs anywhere on the network or to ferret out contact with external risks such as malware and botnet command-and-control centers. The tracking capabilities may also help organizations deal with issues such as virtual sprawl.

"It takes more than a firewall to secure virtual infrastructure," said Rachel Chalmers, an analyst with The 451 Group, in a statement. "Configuration errors can expose sensitive data. Unwitting mistakes on the part of well-meaning employees can leave organizations exposed. Products like VMshield can validate configuration and enforce security policies even as virtualization is changing the game."

VMShield 2.0 with V-Tracker utilizes hypervisor APIs to be VM-aware and is designed for compatibility with VMware, Citrix Xenserver and Microsoft Hyper-V.