Virtualization Security Risks

Maleaka B
3 min readMar 23, 2022

Virtualization has gained popularity in recent years due to its ability to improve efficiency and scalability at lower cost. Server virtualization is used by over 90% of companies, and many companies are looking for other virtualization options, such as application, desktop, network, and storage virtualization.

With the growing popularity of virtualization, security has become one of the main concerns. As a result, there is a need to pay close attention to virtualization security risks. Compared to traditional server infrastructure, virtualization offers certain obvious security benefits. Virtual machines (VMs) have a lot of benefits, including increased availability, isolation from the operating systems and actual hardware they run on, and enhanced security measures that are standard with most virtualization solutions.

Because so many companies use this technology, it is an attractive target for hackers and other cybercriminals. However, virtualization is neither more nor less a security risk than any other component of your IT infrastructure. Its use necessitates a greater understanding of the issues that IT executives have problems with.

Virtualization security is an essential component of a larger security strategy. Virtualization security must be applied to all physical, virtual, and cloud data security layers in today’s settings, where more than 80% of them are virtualized.

Top virtualization security risks

Virtualization security risks are known to adversely affect companies. So it is better to be aware of these potential risks and find ways to mitigate them. Some of the biggest virtualization security issues may be:

  • Storage of snapshots at VMs
    • External attacks
    • Network configuration
    • File sharing between World Cup and host
    • Offline virtual machine security
    • Viruses, ransomware and other malware
    • VM sprawl

Ways to mitigate virtualization security risks
Now that we’ve covered the potential risks of virtualization, let’s look at reducing those risks. Here are some things you can do to reduce the impact of security vulnerabilities mentioned above:

Protect your data security center by securing the administration interface
Virtualization systems can improve data center efficiency and cost-effectiveness, but they also add complexity with a different management interface to protect. As a result, agencies need to ensure that their management interface is secure. Even if an attacker gains administrative access to a system, they cannot take over much of the data center and modify hardware resources.

The best defense is to limit access to a minimum. In addition to needing strong multifactor authentication, cybersecurity teams should guarantee that the interface is only accessible from a virtual local area network dedicated to this purpose. In order for administrators to access, they must first connect to the dedicated VLAN via VPN or jump-box. This significantly reduces the risk of a breach because it prevents attackers from accidentally encountering the interface during routine network scans.

Find out warning signs, carefully monitor network
Even the most carefully designed security measures can sometimes fail. Therefore, monitoring networks and systems for signs of compromise is one of the most critical tasks for agency cyber security teams. This requires a robust set of technologies and processes, such as intrusion detection and prevention systems, thorough logging and security data, and incident management systems that correlate collected data. As you develop monitoring techniques, another thing to keep in mind is to pay extra attention to monitoring virtualization platforms for signs of compromise, such as unusual inter-VM networking activity or administrative connections from unknown sources.

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Maleaka B

I’m Maleaka, passionate about blogging with 4 years of experience in B2B industry. Expertise in B2B services, strategies and products.