In a groundbreaking move, VMware, Inc., a leader in virtualization and cloud computing, announced its partnership with AMD, Samsung, and members of the RISC-V Keystone community at the Confidential Computing Summit 2023. The collaboration aims to simplify the development and operations of confidential computing applications, addressing a significant barrier to its widespread adoption.

Confidential computing, a cutting-edge security concept based on “trusted execution environments,” ensures the confidentiality and integrity of programs and data, even when deployed in cloud or infrastructure environments that may be operated by others. By standardizing an easy-to-use, platform-independent API for creating and operating confidential computing applications, VMware, AMD, and Samsung intend to democratize the use of confidential computing, making it accessible to a broader range of developers.

The key focus of this partnership lies in the open source Certifier Framework for Confidential Computing project, spearheaded by VMware. This developer-focused framework seeks to simplify the creation of secure cloud workloads, secret-keeping services, and privacy-preserving applications, including machine learning and “data economy” workloads based on sensitive data and models from various sources.

Kit Colbert, CTO of VMware, expressed his enthusiasm for the potential impact of confidential computing: “Confidential Computing has the potential to secure workloads no matter where they run, including in multi-cloud and edge settings. The challenge has been to help customers adopt and implement the standard with ease. The collective efforts of the growing ecosystem of contributors to Certifier Framework will help bring those benefits to bear to ISVs, enterprise customers, and Sovereign Cloud providers—enabling them to use this emerging technology more easily and effectively.”

The Certifier Framework ensures uniform security protections across diverse infrastructures, such as telco edge, multi-cloud environments, and sovereign clouds. By streamlining the development process through a standardized set of developer APIs, this collaboration aims to accelerate the adoption of confidential computing in the x86, Arm, and RISC-V ecosystems.

Confidential Computing Summit 2023 provides a platform for VMware and other contributors to the Certifier Framework project to showcase the capabilities of this innovative solution. Demos featuring client/cloud confidential computing in compelling machine learning use cases will be presented. Notably, these demonstrations will highlight “universal” client-cloud trust management across heterogeneous TEEs, including AMD Secure Encrypted Virtualization-Secure Nested Paging (SEV-SNP), SGX, CCA, and RISC-V.

With the backing of industry and community leaders like VMware, AMD, Samsung, and the RISC-V Keystone community, the Certifier Framework for Confidential Computing is set to revolutionize the way developers approach security and privacy in cloud workloads and emerging technologies. As the collaboration gains momentum, it promises to establish confidential computing as a standard practice in the tech industry, bolstering the security of sensitive data and ensuring the protection of intellectual property in today’s ever-evolving digital landscape.

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