Big tech companies join the Confidential Computing Consortium

Some of the world’s leading companies including Alibaba, Baidu, IBM, Intel, Google, Microsoft, and IBM are now a part of the Confidential Computing Consortium to work on the issue of data security. The consortium will work under the supervision of the Linux Foundation to create technology, taxonomies, and tools to support the adoption of confidential computing.

With the rising number of
hacking and data privacy concerns, a common practice in the industry is to secure data when it rests in storage or is transmitted over the network. There is always a risk of data being stolen when it is processed. The rise in cyberattacks has forced tech companies to take the issues of data security seriously. Targeted attacks on IoT-based connected devices, networks and point-of-sale (PoS) devices has increased the importance of confidential computing.

In a joint statement, the Linux Foundation said, “Confidential computing focuses on securing data in use. Current approaches to securing data often address data at rest (storage) and in transit (network), but encrypting data in use is possibly the most challenging step to providing a fully encrypted lifecycle for sensitive data. Confidential computing will enable encrypted data to be processed in memory without exposing it to the rest of the system and reduce exposure for sensitive data and provide greater control and transparency for users.”

As enterprises move towards cloud computing environments, confidential computing has become an important concern. Companies participating in the consortium have made a series of open source project contributions including the Intel Software Guard Extension (SGX). Even Microsoft has contributed to the Open Enclave SDK for developers to build Trusted Execution Environment (TEE) application.

The Confidential Computing Consortium will bring a change by first uniting the hardware vendors, cloud providers, developers, open source experts, and academics to create and expand the market. Encrypting data is the most essential yet difficult step to bring a fully-encrypted lifecycle for sensitive data. The Linux Foundation believes that Confidential Computing will enable encrypted data to be processed in the memory without exposing it to the rest of the system.