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Virtualization Security: Protecting Virtualized Environments by Dave Shackleford

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Chapter 6

Securing the Virtual Machine

For most organizations, the entire point of virtualizing is to create and maintain virtual machines that take the place of physical platforms in the datacenter. In many ways, these virtual machines (VMs) have the exact same behavior and security profile as their physical counterparts. However, there are some inherent changes in the risk profile of VMs versus physical systems due to the nature of VMs themselves — in essence, they're simply a collection of files that represent systems. Files can be corrupted, stolen, manipulated, intercepted, and parsed for sensitive data, unlike standard physical machine builds.

In addition, there are particular connectivity elements and configuration options that make VMs ...

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