VMware Returns to RSA Conference: Lateral Movement is the New Cyber Battleground

Another year, another RSA in the rear-view mirror. While we’re sad that it’s over, we’re ecstatic over the impact and thought leadership we brought to the event. In case you couldn’t make it to the event, we’ve put together a recap of the big moments and notable takeaways that you need to know going forward.

Anyways, let’s jump into it!

VMware Lays Out the Future of Security in the Keynote

Our very own Tom Gillis, SVP and GM, VMware Networking and Advanced Security Business Group, laid out a detailed vision of the current state of cybersecurity and what is to come in the near future in his RSA keynote. He laid out a clear picture of what we are all up against.

Attackers are looking for ways to breach our defenses and stay there. Using the unthinkable idea of a burglar breaking into your home and staying there for the next nine months, he paints the picture of an environment where constant vigilance is a necessity.

“In a Zero Trust model we have to assume that the attackers are in. So the name of the game is: how do we make it hard for [attackers] to move laterally.”

Tom challenges enterprises to rethink the security perimeter and endpoint by also considering the networks, applications, and data all utilized by the user.

After detailing the strengths of VMware and meeting these challenges head-on, Tom invited VMware’s Director of Threat Research, Dr. Amelia Estwick, to discuss the greatest challenges facing SOC leadership:

  • The fact that our SOC teams are inundated with more data than they can handle. This allows attackers to slip through undetected.
  • SOC teams are missing the right tooling they need to assess threats, make correlations, and “evict” attackers.

Dr. Estwick then succinctly laid out the vision of VMware in the broader scheme of the future of security:

“We all need to come together. Not one vendor has the silver bullet. — That means here at VMware we are very fortunate to have visibility across the enterprise. — We are really excited to partner with the community and the ecosystem to build not only the tools and technologies but also common frameworks and sharing this telemetry with the ecosystem. [This way] we can not only protect our customers and community but also protect our nation.”

VMware Announces Contexa

Man on presenting stage

Topping off our RSA visit, Tom Gillis also announced the launch of VMware Contexa, a full-fidelity threat intelligence cloud that sees what other solutions don’t and stops what other solutions can’t.

VMware Contexa gives enterprises the ability to observe and understand the inner workings of modern and traditional applications from every aspect of the process, including the user, device, network, or data.

“Contexa is the brain that gives us the context to understand ‘is that a legitimate RDP connection, or is the ransomware?’”

VMware Wins Global Infosec Awards at RSA

As we’ve previously announced, Cyber Defense Magazine named VMware a winner in its annual Global Infosec Awards for:

  1. “Best Solution in Application Security” for VMware Carbon Black Container
  2. “Most Innovative Insider Threat Detection” for VMware NSX Network Detection and Response

What’s more Yan Ross of Cyber Defense Magazine had this to say in recognition of our achievements:

“We scoured the globe looking for cybersecurity innovators that could make a huge difference and potentially help turn the tide against the exponential growth in cyber crime. VMware is absolutely worthy of these coveted awards and consideration for deployment in your environment.” 

Read more about our awards in the related article below.

VMware on the Expo Floor

Event attendees at VMware boothNot only did we set the bar on stage at RSA, but we also put our best forward on the expo floor at the VMware booth.

VMware even went on the air! Our executives made the rounds and discussed in multiple interviews the current state of security and what it takes to achieve resilience in an ever-changing environment. We’re not ones to rest on our laurels behind a booth. At VMware, we take the message to everyone willing to hear it.

Back at the booth, the energy could only be described as palpable, energetic, and informative. We had a constant stream of attendees joining us to learn all about Contexa, as well as how VMware Security solutions modernize the SOC, secure multi-cloud, modern applications, and a distributed workforce.

Of course, it wasn’t all work. We know how to have fun as well! We invited attendees to join us to play our very own VMware go-kart game on the big screen! After all, what better way to get out some conference energy with a little friendly competition?

When we arrived at RSA, we sought to shape the conversation on stage and off. Judging by the energy and reception we witnessed, it appears that we succeeded in our goal and then some. We can’t wait to join you all again next year and until then, this is VMware signing off.