Jennifer Schwager

Author Archives: Jennifer Schwager

10 Reasons to Implement Network Automation – Low Effort, High Impact 

In 2022, nearly 77% of technology professionals see the need for improvement in their data center network automation strategies. Despite years of predictions about applications and data migrating to the public cloud, a consensus has been that data centers remain the indispensable core of any digital infrastructure. While the public cloud has a vital role to play and it continues to grow, enterprises and service providers continue to rely on data centers to power their operations. To remain relevant in a cloud-centric world, data centers must modernize – needing scalable, efficient, and agile operations. Highly manual processes do not scale gracefully, therefore calling for organizations and their data centers to adopt network automation or be left behind. 

 VMware is proud to have an opportunity to sponsor Enterprise Management Associates (EMA) in producing The Future of Data Center Network Automation research report. This report analyzes cutting-edge technology of data center automation – drawing on quantitative and qualitative research done by EMA analysts – focusing on how tech orgs are planning, implementing, and using data center network automation solutions, the specific technologies they’re using, and the benefits and challenges associated with data center network automation. Using real-time VMware customers Continue reading

The 7 Requirements of Highly Effective Load Balancers 

As Stephen R. Covey stated in his popular book, The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, “True effectiveness requires balance.” VMware agrees. And when it comes to accelerating modern application delivery, true application effectiveness requires a modern load balancer. So, with a respectful nod to Stephen R. Covey, here are the seven requirements of highly effective load balancers.  

  1. Be proactive with self-service. Move away from “create a ticket and wait” developer experiences to self-service, role-based access control for owners to provision, troubleshoot, and monitor their own apps.
  2. Begin with the end in mind with on-demand autoscaling. Automation drives great user experiences. Plan for peak usage times without causing overprovisioning and idle capacity.
  3. Put things first with a 100 percent software solution. The need to support on-premises data center and multi-cloud deployments means that enterprises need to choose applications that work consistently across different environments with a single point of orchestration.
  4. Think win-win with real-time insights and visibility into application traffic. A modern load balancer should collect real-time application telemetry and provide insights into each transaction and end-user patterns.
  5. Seek first to understand, then to be understood with security insights. App vulnerabilities stem from incorrect access control policies Continue reading

Learn About the Threats Lurking in Your Linux-Based Multi-Cloud

78% of the most popular websites are powered by Linux, which means malware targeting Linux-based operating systems are attacking multi-cloud environments at an alarming rate. Threats such as ransomware, cryptomining components, and remote access tools (RATs) take advantage of weak authentication, vulnerabilities, and misconfigurations in container-based infrastructures. To support IT leaders and cybersecurity professionals in their transformation to top-tier ransomware and malware defense, VMware is proud to sponsor a 1-hour long live webcast on Exposing Threats Lurking in Your Linux-Based Multi-Cloud, on February 28th, at 2 pm ET, presented by SC Media. 

In this exclusive partnership with CyberRisk Alliance, our subject matter researchers Giovanni Vigna, Sr. Director of Threat Intelligence, VMware, and Brian Baskin, Technical Lead, Threat Analysis Unit, VMware, explore: 

  • Existing characterization techniques and how to safeguard against sophisticated malware 
  • Ransomware and cryptominer power players that target Linux systems following cross-pollination and evolution 
  • How to fight back against these threats with a combination of approaches, policies, and mechanisms 

The webinar is an extension of the recently released Exposing Linux-based Threats Lurking in Your Multi-Cloud threat report, which included in-depth research conducted by the VMware Threat Analysis Unit (TAU) on Continue reading

6 East-West Security Myths Busted

With the world at our fingertips via a simple Google search, it can sometimes be tough to figure out what’s fact and what’s fiction. Whether you’re an expert, novice, or beginner in the tech world, time should be spent putting capabilities and terms into action – rather than trying to piece them together and understand them like a Sudoku puzzle. That’s why we’re going to debunk six major East-West security myths for you – so you can get back to the good stuff. 

1. East-West security is the monitoring and inspection of traffic moving medially within the network perimeter, working to identify and block threats and enable access rights.

Busted. East-West security does all of the fancy stuff mentioned, with one very important difference: it moves laterally through the network perimeter. This is a key understanding, since East-West security operates on the premise that threat factors will eventually find a way through next-generation firewalls – which means all internal network traffic is vulnerable.

2. A traditional firewall that manages North-South traffic can handle a modern network breach by itself. 

Busted. While it’s important to have North-South security in place (filtering the traffic that is exiting and entering the network), it cannot protect the network on its own Continue reading

How VMware Protects Organizations with Simply Stronger Security [INFOGRAPHIC]

Every 11 seconds, a new organization falls victim to ransomware. That means by the time you’re done reading these two sentences, your organization could very well become another statistic. In the war against ransomware, there are two cohorts: those who are armed for war and those who will suffer digital casualties. With threats becoming increasingly more agile, it’s up to you to protect your organization’s past, present, and future. 

The Numbers Don’t Lie 

Cybercrime has become a bigger entity than any of us could’ve ever imagined. With over 4,000 attacks every day and $20 billion in damages in 2021 alone, ransomware has become the big business we’ve all feared. Imposing numbers like these make it seem nearly impossible to protect against ransomware – but there is a solution that will strengthen your armor.  

Protection Served with Simplicity 

We know that shopping for new digital armor can be daunting. But the threat is real, and VMware is not in the business of smoke and mirror solutions. We are, however, in the business of helping enterprises scale out – simply, securely, swiftly. To that end, the VMware Distributed Firewall is a foundational step for many customers strengthening their multi-cloud environments. Enforcing east-west advanced threat protection at each workload, our distributed firewall solution can scale to 20TB+ while coming in at one-third of the cost of other solutions in the industry. Providing support to over 30,000 customers, VMware Security Solutions have consistently been able to stop attackers in Continue reading

The Hard Facts: Hardware vs. Software Load Balancers

Flexible infrastructure choices and application architectures are changing the way that modern enterprises run their distributed environments (see Figure 1). Enterprises have become application-centric, investing significant effort and resources in continuous delivery goals and DevOps practices in order to automate routine IT and operations tasks.

Hardware-based application delivery controllers (ADCs) have been the staple of application delivery in data centers for the last two decades. However, these legacy load balancing solutions aren’t keeping up with the changes in modern, dynamic capacity and automation needs. Legacy hardware-based ADCs have become inflexible in the face of changing requirements, delaying application rollouts and causing overspending and overprovisioning in many cases. Most enterprises experience the “do more with less but faster” challenges shown in Figure 2  when it comes to rolling out new applications or updates, which can often take weeks.

With aggressive continuous delivery goals and ever-greater customer expectations, businesses are pushing back against delays due to hardware provisioning and manual configurations of ADCs that slow time to market for application deployments and updates.

Figure 1: Computing today: Evolving app architectures and infrastructure heterogeneity.


Figure 2: Legacy hardware-based load balancing solutions are not keeping up with the modern pace of business.

Virtualized Continue reading

Learn the 4 Security Requirements for Modern Apps

Flying cars will be available by 2024 — or so they say. Imagine cars being able to run their errands faster, be safer off the ground, and allow for higher-level observability. In the cybersecurity world, we have our own version of a flying car: modern applications. Modern apps are extremely multi-faceted: housing microservices/APIs, they are SLO/SLI driven, and native to the multi-cloud. The innovative and futuristic feel of modern apps is exciting, but the transition to them doesn’t come without complications. Despite modern app complexities, there are standard security best practices you can use to meet your challenges and continue to move your enterprise forward. 

The four major security requirements are:  

  1. Multi-Cloud Secure Connectivity
  2. Traffic Management and Perimeter Security
  3. Security Observability
  4. Distributed Security and Compliance  

Come along for the ride as we break these down. 

Multi-Cloud Secure Connectivity 

A multi-cloud environment is becoming the standard within enterprises today. But just because something is standard doesn’t mean there’s a universal understanding of it. Multi-cloud networks involve the use of multiple cloud computing, storage, and traffic services in a single-space architecture. The multi-cloud aims to provide fast distribution of cloud assets, apps, software, end-to-end encryption, and much more. Adopting this strategy effectively means no room for error. As the multi-cloud is built to speed up an enterprise’s digital transformation, it requires a fast, secure, and reliable foundation to provide a strong end-user experience. If connectivity lags, your organization will Continue reading

How William Hill Achieved Success in their Journey to Multi-Cloud

A commonly used term in the sports betting world is handicapper. A handicapper is a person who analyzes sports events to predict the winning team or player. This person (or team) focuses on all the moving pieces in a chaotic or high-stakes environment to make business-critical decisions. Similarly, in managing a multi-cloud environment, organizations have a lot at stake, and they must make crucial operational choices for the sake of security and the end-user experience. Having the ability to spot challenges in advance when moving through a multi-cloud journey will make the difference between success and failure. We’re going to look at three of the key multi-cloud challenges organizations face, as well as a real-life customer success story, William Hill, and how they overcame some of their biggest obstacles in their quest for multi-cloud success. 

3 Roadblocks to Multi-Cloud 

Regardless of where your organization started, there are three primary challenges you will likely face in moving to multi-cloud. To begin, every cloud is different in the way that it operates. This creates issues when it comes to connecting services across different cloud environments. Second, each cloud has its own methods and APIs when it comes to securing workloads. Thus, the process can lose consistency when different clouds are trying to communicate with one another. Lastly, providing a winning end-user experience requires strong observability within a multi-cloud environment. If that doesn’t exist, the bread and butter of your enterprise is at stake. 

So, how do you move past these roadblocks?  

There are three must-haves to keep in mind — and to keep you calm, cool, and collected when facing Continue reading

Learn How Real-World Organizations Benefited from an Overhaul of their Security Lifestyle 

Achieving better security is something we all know is necessary but can struggle to get there. It’s like improving your diet: you know you need to eat better and exercise to cultivate a healthier, more well-rounded lifestyle. But you don’t do it because it’s hard, often expensive, and can be a pain. So, you avoid it (trust me, we’ve all been there). But, you learn that putting one foot in front of the other forces you to take small steps toward big results. The same notion applies to needing better security. We know we need it, but it’s not always easy to know where to begin.    

There is no quick fix for sustainable change. Sure, we can make better choices each day, but it takes consistency and a solid structural foundation – a lifestyle change – to maintain these advancements. Losing weight is one thing; when it comes to better multi-cloud security, this is a process that leaves little room for fluctuation. Start with the fundamentals and tighten your belt over time.   

Let’s take a look at real-world organizations that have benefitted from doing the hard stuff. They’ve done the work and have seen the results. Continue reading

How to Accelerate Your Digital Transformation with VMware’s Cloud Networking Capabilities

Realize What’s Possible with Advanced Cloud Networking Capabilities 

VMworld 2021 – what a whirlwind. Thank you for attending and making the virtual event a success. With so many sessions and so little time, we thought it was important to point out one of the most notable networking sessions of this year: Automation is Modernizing Networks, delivered by Tom Gills, SVP & General Manager, Networking and Advanced Security. 

In case you missed it, we’re going to catch you up on essential insights, networking news, and more. 

Networking by the Numbers 

 The vision behind VMware’s cloud networking is to centralize policy and networking infrastructure. Today, there are more than 23,000 customers using VMware’s virtual networking products. 96 out of the Fortune 100 have chosen VMware to virtualize their network infrastructure. VMware has replaced more than 12,000 power-hungry, hardware load balancer appliances. There are more than 450,000 branch sites globally, accelerating the digital transformation for enterprises of all kinds. 

Leveling Up  

Taking a step back, we can see how clearly all of these developments are enhancing digital operations for our various constituents. With two strokes of a key, our customers can send applications directly into production. This includes scanning for security/compliance violations, enforcing these security and compliance Continue reading

10 Resources to Get Started on Container Network Security

Ready to get started? The following resources and tutorials will enhance your understanding of container network security and help you get started.

Analyst Research

Get an independent analyst’s view on the state of container security:


Many container network security experts are blogging about lessons learned and sharing their knowledge on how to secure mod- ern applications. Follow their conversations:

Courses and Certifications

Developers and platform operators alike need to learn how to secure applications and platforms. Why not take a class to enrich your understanding? There are many free and low-cost options, including the following:

The VMworld Aftermath: Continue Cutting Edge Learning with VMware’s Solution Spotlight 2021 Webcast Series

If you attended VMworld 2021 and you’re already itching for more learning, we have just the thing for you. Join our new upcoming VMware Solution Spotlight 2021 webcast series. You will be able to extend your learning and get answers to your burning questions by taking a technical deep dive into the innovations that are driving the Virtual Cloud Network.  

The series experts will be hosting a live Q&A session and will be covering: 

The three-part Cloud Networking Thursday series will take place on November 11th, November 18th, and wrap up on December 2nd.  

Check out a brief synopsis of each session to see the right fit for you: 

Learn How Your Enterprise Gets the Edge with SASE (11/11): 

How to Utilize Automation to Revolutionize Modern Networks

At VMworld 2021, we’re imagining what’s possible when it comes to the public cloud experience everywhere.  IT enterprises are expected to keep up with increasing consumer demands, focusing on fast application roll out across multiple clouds. There’s an industry wide emphasis being placed on delivering immediate, secure, and strong end-user network experience to get the job done right. At this year’s conference, we’re looking at real customers and their experiences when it comes to optimizing automation in modern network environments. 

Dankse Bank, a leader in the financial industry, learned what was necessary to achieve the most simplified self-service functionality possible. By starting with Day 0 deployment and all the way to Day 2 delivery, Dankse Bank secured sustainable service delivery and self-service modifications. VMworld 2021 session Network Operations: Intelligence and Automation from Day 0 to Day 2 takes a deeper look at this customer’s intelligence journey to show how you can achieve simplification within the public cloud, too.  

Simplifying Day 0 and Day 2 ops are action steps IT can take to streamline business ops but understanding the modern enterprise – and the complexities involved – is evergreen. Learning the ins-and-outs of the modern network with end-to-end virtualization allows businesses like yours to succeed in even the most diverse environments. Tom Gillis, Business Group leader, NASBG, of VMware, takes us on a deep dive of why building out a better security posture within diverse infrastructure is crucial. You Continue reading

Simplification through Unification: One Network Across the Entire Multi-Cloud

Two major pillars of VMworld 2021 focus on enhancing productivity and consistency. More than ever, businesses are demanding consistent, secure, and reliable communication between apps and users. What Networking professionals at VMworld want to reinforce is that multi-cloud ops shouldn’t have to slow down due to poor app distribution among workspaces. The network should be durable and secure everywhere. While  threats are inevitable, businesses can be prepared by learning how to converge networking, security, and threat detection within the cloud. And that’s exactly what we’re going to teach you at this year’s virtual event. 

Valued customers of all different industries have chosen to allow VMware’s multi-cloud ops solutions to guide them through their digital transformation. Susan Wu, Senior Product Marketing Manager, and Aamer Aakhter, Product Manager, are two seasoned VMware leaders who will take you through how customers achieved multi-cloud excellence, and how you can say “Goodbye Compromises Everywhere. Hello Productivity Anywhere,” with this VMworld session. 

While simplicity may look different depending upon an organization’s goals, there is one thing that remains constant: performance shouldn’t have to be sacrificed for safety. Your enterprise should be able to streamline the entire multi-cloud to remain agile, productive, and increasingly adaptive against any threat or operational hiccup.  

IT portfolios are becoming increasingly Continue reading

Learn How to Implement Stronger Multi-Cloud Security at VMworld 2021

One of the major focuses at VMworld 2021 is to educate network security teams on how they can achieve the strongest security posture by enabling Zero Trust. The Zero Trust model is essential to securing your entire digital footprint and to remain secure as it grows. Leaders like the White House, CISOs, and industry analysts of all kinds, agree that the Zero Trust approach to network architecture is the best way to protect not only the existing perimeter but also the critical apps and workloads inside.  

During the Never Trust: Building Zero Trust Networks VMworld 2021 session, industry leaders will take a practical look at what it takes to adopt Zero Trust at scale, offer a blueprint to the Zero Trust Architecture model, and suggest next steps to implement Zero Trust for your organization. 

An extension of learning to build Zero Trust networks is sharing tangible solutions to get your business the strength and security it needs. VMware leaders Christopher Kruegel, VP of Security Services, and Vivek Bhandri, Senior Director of Product Marketing, share VMware’s NSX Distributed Firewall service that will strengthen your East-West security to protect any workload in any cloud. Add A Modern Firewall For Any Cloud and Any Workload [SEC2688] to your VMworld itinerary now.   

To gain visibility and control within the network via Zero Trust, means giving enterprises room to breathe.  Eliminating any hesitation when it comes to threat prevention hardens your organization’s security infrastructure Continue reading

All Things Networking at VMworld 2021

Must-See Sessions for Networking 

This year’s networking sessions – based on the audience feedback from VMworld 2020 – not only feature more customers stories and interviews, but have a balance of innovation, industry trends, roadmap, and technical get-your-hands-dirty sessions. The VMworld 2021 Session Types and Levels summary gives you an idea of what’s available for you and your colleagues.  

If you’re not sure about the different learning tracks or what they will include, check out the VMworld learning index here. The robust Content Catalog will allow you to filter sessions based on topic, tracks, products, type and level; the scheduler lets you to build an itinerary.  

Lastly, we have made a list of can’t miss sessions based on your role.  

For Networking Leaders:  

 For Networking Practitioners:  

From Zero Visibility to Zero Trust in the Data Center

Imagine someone breaking into your home. If you catch them in the act, they’re most likely leaving right away, and you’re upping your security system. Now imagine someone breaking into your home, and staying for nine months – now what? They’ve prolonged their stay completely unnoticed and destroyed the security system you once trusted and relied upon. Your next move? Trying to reinstate the faith you once had in security and completely reconfigure your security blueprint.  

Let’s break down why data center security has taken center stage as of late with the increasing challenges of securing east-west traffic and the journey from zero visibility to Zero Trust thanks to Forrester and VMware’s collaborative webinar session. (Or, feel free to get straight to all the juicy details, and watch the webinar now.) 

The Catapult for Enhanced Data Center Security 

We’re on the heels of the global COVID-19 pandemic, and wow, have things changed. As a global community, we were trying to juggle the unknown and potential threats that COVID-19 had posed. From an industry perspective, we had to engage in an overhaul that changed the way we worked – forever. For organizations everywhere, remote work is now a part of the new normal routine. So, with these massive changes, Continue reading