Startup Gazzang Releases Security Solution For OpenStack Clouds

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Big data security software startup Gazzang unveiled its latest encryption and key management support services for GlusterFS-backed OpenStack clouds, the Austin, Texas-based company said Thursday.

The support is geared toward the distributed file system solution from the Red Hat-sponsored open source Gluster Community that backs OpenStack's private and public cloud software.

David Tishgart, senior director of marketing and alliances at Gazzang, said that while the software company doesn't totally sell through the channel, it does have strong partnerships with cloud and big data companies like Amazon, Cloudera, 10gen and Rackspace.

"When their customers say, 'Your platform is great, as is the ability to run analytics on a greater volume and variety of data than ever before. However, I need to be able to secure this data. How do I do that?' They recommend their customers to Gazzang," Tishgart said.


[Related: Cloud Security Risks Lurk In Big Data Projects]

The company, backed by Austin Ventures and Silver Creek Ventures, offers cloud vendors tools to encrypt sensitive data stored on cloud servers and protect the key manager that unlocks the encryption.

Encrypting data stored on cloud servers adds a second layer of protection beyond firewalls and can protect information even if the server has been hacked, Tishgart said.

"Data at rest -- not being analyzed, just sitting dormant on a server somewhere [in this case, on OpenStack cloud servers] -- is susceptible to all sorts of theft and issues," Tishgart said. "At the end of the day, if the data they somehow gain access to is encrypted then it doesn't really matter. All they're going to get is an encrypted blob."

Matt Asay, vice president of business development and strategy at 10gen, a Palo Alto, Calif.-based developer for the open source document database MongoDB and a Gazzang partner, said that real and perceived security vulnerabilities are a "significant inhibitor" to widespread enterprise adoption of any technology.

"This is as true of OpenStack as it is of Amazon Web Services, two cloud technologies upon which our customers rely," Asay said. "As such, the more Gazzang and others help to remove security fears related to running applications on these platforms, the more comfortable our customers feel running MongoDB on them."

Though the tech startup is still developing its partner network, Asay said he expects Gazzang's recent work with OpenStack to help 10gen and other technology vendors.

"While MongoDB comes with advanced security built in, Gazzang's advanced encryption has proved to be a key component in a number of customer applications," Asay said.

Bob Bardwell, business development manager at Rackspace, a Windcrest, Texas-based open cloud hosting company and a Gazzang partner, said that it was encouraging to see the company offer a solution that's compatible with OpenStack and Rackspace, which allows for a "more closely aligned partnership" with Gazzang.

"This announcement is a great testament to the belief in OpenStack, and we're excited to continue working with Gazzang through our Cloud Tools program," Bardwell said.

NEXT: Key Management, The Other Piece Of Security

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