Citrix’s Crosby & The Mother Of All Cop-Outs
In an article over at SearchSecurity.com, Simon Crosby, the CTO of Citrix, suggests that "Virtualization vendors [are] not in the security business."
Besides summarizing what is plainly an obvious statement of fact regarding the general omission of integrated security (outside of securing the hypervisor) from most virtualization platforms, Crosby’s statement simply underscores the woeful state we’re in:
While virtualization vendors will do their role in protecting the hypervisor, they are not in the business of catching bad guys or discovering vulnerabilities, said Simon Crosby, chief technology officer of Citrix Systems.
Independent security vendors will play a critical role in protecting virtual environments, he said. "The industry has already decided a long time ago that third party vendors are required to secure any platform," Crosby said. In this interview, Crosby agrees that using virtual technology introduces new complexities and security issues.
He said the uncertainties will be addressed once the industry matures.
I’m sure it’s reasonable to suggest that nobody expects virtualization platform providers to "…catch
bad guys," but I do expect that they employ a significant amount of
resources and follow an SDLC to discover vulnerabilities — at least in
Further, I don’t expect that the hypervisor should be the place in which all security functionality is delivered, but simply transferring the lack of design and architecture forethought from the hypervisor provider to the consumer by expecting someone else to clean up the mess is just, well, typical.
I love the last line. What a crock of shit. We’ve seen how well
this approach had worked with operating system vendors in the past, so why
shouldn’t the "next generation" of OS vendors — virtualization
platform providers — follow suit and not provide for a secure operating environment?
Let’s see, Microsoft is investing hugely in security. Cisco is too. Why would the other tip of the trident want to? VMware’s at least taking steps to deliver a secure hypervisor as well as API’s to help secure the VM’s that run atop of it. Where’s Citrix in this…I mean besides late and complaining they weren’t first?
So, in trade for the "open framework for security ecosystem partnership" cop-out, we get to wait for the self-perpetuating security industry hamster wheel of pain to come back full circle.
The fact that the "industry" has "decided" that "third party vendors are required to secure any platform" simply points to the ignorance, arrogance and manifest destiny we endure at the hands of those who are responsible for the computing infrastructure we’re all held hostage with.
Just so I understand the premise, the security industry (or is it the virtualization industry?) has decided that the security industry instead of the OS/infrastructure (virtualization) vendors are the one’s responsible to secure the infrastructure — and thus our businesses!? What a shocker. Way to push for change, Simon.
I can’t even describe how utterly pissed off these statements make me.