What Is Security Virtualization?

Virtualization is the process by which one creates a virtual (rather than physical) version of something such as an application or operating system. Security Virtualization is the subsequent process implemented to ensure the protection of the virtualized hardware infrastructure. Security Virtualization is necessary in order to minimize a number of risks which accompany the process of virtualization that virtual physical security systems cannot counteract such as unsecured file transfer between guests and hosts, risk of compromise spreading from applications on consolidated servers, and infection via the virtual network. Additionally, as multiple virtual networks operate across the same physical infrastructure, the security must address each level of virtualization in the process.

How Does Security Virtualization Work?

The virtualization consists of three major aspects: a host operating system, a hypervisor, and a guest operating system. The host, or hardware of the virtualization system, provides computing resources including but not limited to memory, third-party software, storage, and physical interface cards. The host is also able to contain one or more virtual partitions to share physical resources with. Security virtualization works by using software installed on the virtual networks to monitor applications and  workload and managing security policies for access to the virtual networks themselves.

What Are The Different Approaches To Security Virtualization?

The following approaches are just a few of the ways to improve the security using virtualization:

Network Virtualization

Network virtualization combines hardware and software network resources into a single virtual network, allowing for the minimization of the impact of malware when infecting the system.

Server Virtualization

Server virtualization enables smaller virtual servers to run their own operating systems able to reboot independently of one another and thus identify and isolate unstable or compromised applications.


Sandboxing separates running programs from one another to protect applications via isolation from unverified third parties, outside malware, and harmful viruses.

Guest OS Security

Guest OS Security allows for systematic updates of the guest OS, the backup of virtual drives in the case of disaster recovery, and application of the same policy for non-virtualized computers.

Where Can Security Virtualization Be Used?

Security Virtualization is increasingly common in the modern world as more and more applications are being run in the cloud and networks are growing increasingly virtualized. With this increased virtualization of network environments, more requirements are placed upon virtual security. The new forms of security software must be virtualized to move with the applications and monitor access and security policies of the infrastructure.


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