An increasingly popular computing solution, virtual images (sometimes called virtual machines) help businesses around the world save time and money while completing technical tasks. Virtual images are a cost-effective solution for projects where you don’t have the resources to purchase, store, and maintain hardware. CIS now offers hardened images on Google Cloud Platform—one of the major cloud providers.
A virtual image is an operating system (OS) or application environment installed on software that imitates dedicated hardware. Virtual images provide the same functionality as a physical computer.
Virtual images are used every day to help remote employees connect to sensitive work environments. They also help businesses run specialty programs, increase data management capacity, and develop or test new applications. For routine computing tasks, virtual images (called instances) can be spun up in the cloud and scaled to the project at hand.
The Google Cloud Platform is a suite of cloud solutions.
Google Compute Engine (GCE) is part of the Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) offerings of Google Cloud Platform. It enables users to launch virtual images on demand. GCE is built on the same infrastructure that runs Google services including Google search, Gmail, and YouTube–services that are used by more than one billion users respectively worldwide.
While speed and flexibility make virtual images a handy computing solution, cybersecurity is just as important in the cloud as in the local office. That’s why CIS developed hardened virtual images–preconfigured environments for various platforms including Microsoft Windows Server 2012 and CentOS Linux 7. CIS Hardened Images are securely configured to meet the CIS Benchmark guidelines, consensus-based recommendations developed with cybersecurity experts around the world. The CIS Benchmarks are an internationally recognized secure configuration standard used by over 1,000 businesses to improve their cybersecurity defenses.
Whether you’re a retailer using Google Cloud Platform to manage sensitive PCI data, an IT consultant testing custom applications, or university protecting student data, CIS Hardened Images help keep you safe in the cloud.