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Cisco redefines security for data centres, clouds with Hypershield

By , Africa editor
Africa , 19 Apr 2024
Chuck Robbins, Cisco Chair and CEO.
Chuck Robbins, Cisco Chair and CEO.

Cisco, a multinational security and networking giant, unveiled Hypershield yesterday to secure data centres and clouds in response to the increased demands placed on IT infrastructure by the AI revolution.

With Cisco Hypershield, the company said it is rethinking how to use and defend Artificial Intelligence (AI) and other modern workloads.

This solution, Cisco said it is tipping the scales in favor of defenders, building on its recent announcements to accelerate AI infrastructure with its ethernet switching, silicon and compute portfolio.

Cisco Hypershield secures applications, devices, and data in public and private data centres, clouds, and physical locations – anywhere clients need it, according to the company.

The company added that designed and built with AI in mind from the start, Hypershield enables organisations to achieve “security outcomes beyond what has been possible with humans alone.”

“Cisco Hypershield is one of the most significant security innovations in our history,” said Chuck Robbins, Cisco chair and CEO. “With our data advantage and strength in security, infrastructure and observability platforms, Cisco is uniquely positioned to help our customers harness the power of AI.”

Further, the company added that Hypershield is a new security architecture and it’s built with technology originally developed for hyperscale public clouds and is now available for enterprise IT teams of all sizes.

Cisco said: “Hypershield enables security enforcement to be placed everywhere it needs to be. Every application service in the datacenter. Every Kubernetes cluster in the public cloud. Every container and virtual machine. 

"It can even turn every network port into a high-performance security enforcement point, bringing completely new security capabilities not just to clouds, but to the data center, on a factory floor, or a hospital imaging room. This new technology blocks application exploits in minutes and stops lateral movement in its tracks.”

Jeetu Patel, executive vice president and general manager for security and collaboration at Cisco, explained further: “AI has the potential to empower the world’s 8 billion people to have the same impact as 80 billion. With this abundance, we must reimagine the role of the data center – how data centers are connected, secured, operated and scaled.”

Hypershield enforces security across three layers: software, virtual machines, and network and compute servers and appliances, leveraging the same hardware accelerators used extensively in high-performance computing and hyperscale public clouds, said Cisco.

On the project, Cisco collaborated with NVIDIA to develop and optimise AI-native security solutions to safeguard and scale tomorrow's data centres.

This partnership, the companies said, will include the use of the NVIDIA Morpheus cybersecurity AI framework for rapid network anomaly detection, as well as NVIDIA NIM microservices to enable custom security AI assistants for the enterprise.

In a statement, they said security enforcement with Hypershield happens at three different layers: in software, in virtual machines, and in network and compute servers and appliances, leveraging the same hardware accelerators that are used extensively in high-performance computing and hyperscale public clouds.

They noted: “NVIDIA’s class of converged accelerators combine the power of GPU and DPU computing, to augment Cisco Hypershield with robust security from cloud to edge.”

Kevin Deierling, senior vice president of Networking at NVIDIA, commented: "Enterprises across all industries are seeking the security that can protect them against ever expanding cyber threats.

“Together, Cisco and NVIDIA are leveraging the power of AI to deliver powerful, incredibly secure data center infrastructure that will enable enterprises to transform their businesses and benefit customers everywhere.”

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