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    Privacy and Confidential Computing

    Technology has developed in ways where one form of infrastructure can heavily rely on another to be successful and reliant. Cybersecurity has its own reputation for its vast protection and support but one area that supports its fluency is private and confidential computing. An area within technology that aims to address communications and data privacy.

    As companies now rely more on public and hybrid cloud services, it is imperative to have data privacy in the cloud. This provides greater assurance for companies and developers that their cloud services remain confidential and secure. This encourages larger foundations to move more of their sensitive data and computing workloads to public cloud services

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    What is confidential computing?

    Confidential computing’s main agenda is to encrypt the entire computing process, not just the data alone, creating additional layers of security around sensitive information. This cloud computing technology isolates sensitive data in a protected central processing unit (CPU) enclave during processing. The contents of this enclave are unique to the authorising programme code, therefore the data being processed is invisible and unknowable to anything or anyone else, this is inclusive to the cloud provider.

    Private and confidential computing has seen larger more advanced company’s helping to develop best practices by way of Confidential Computing Consortium(CCC). These include Google, Microsoft, Alibaba, IBM and VMware and others. The CCC’s main aim is the define industry-wide standards for private and confidential computing, this will lead to the development of tools within open-source confidential computing.

    Why use confidential computing?

    • Protection of sensitive data whilst extending cloud computing benefits to sensitive workloads – Private computing eliminates the single largest barrier when moving sensitive data to highly regulated data. It also allows IT infrastructures to become more flexible and to modernise public cloud platforms.
    • Allowing new cloud solution collaborations – Confidential computing offers a number of additional advantages that surpass its main aim of just safeguarding information. By ensuring protection of data in a shielded environment, allows multiple companies to collaborate without having any IP or proprietary information compromised.

    An important development of Confidential Computing is its use of embedded encryption keys, this locks data into secure enclave during processing, which allows no access to the data, even from privileged users and operating systems.

    Privacy and confidential computing technology is still in its primary stages and needs much more further development, but we are confident it will slide into mainstream in 2021.