Machine Identity: Sidechain Security’s Newest DevOps Integration at Venafi’s Global Summit

By Andrew Lance | CEO

As the recognized leader in machine identity management, Venafi excels in securing machine-to-machine connections and communications.

This month, at Venafi’s Machine Identity Management Global Summit, the world’s foremost cybersecurity organizations and enterprise security leaders met to learn, discuss, and prepare for the future of machine identity management. As part of the global summit, Sidechain Security announced its upcoming integrated solution: Venafi CodeSign Protect Plugin for Microsoft Azure DevOps. Read on to learn more about the most discussed topics at the conference and how Sidechain’s newest integration helps transform DevOps into DevSecOps.

The Purpose of Protecting Machine Identities

Why do we use usernames and passwords to control access to our bank accounts, our social media feeds, and our devices? Of course, it is because we do not want just anyone to access our personal data.

Keys and certificates are to computers as usernames and passwords are to humans—precisely, they serve as machine identities, authorizing and validating machine access to data and other systems.

The process of protecting machine identities, however, is significantly more difficult than safeguarding your Facebook account. When you notice suspicious behavior surrounding your Facebook, your human brain’s creative thinking and intuition revs up to suggest there may be danger. Machines lack intuitive instincts making it far more challenging for them to identify threats.

Trust and Machine Identity Management

Industry best practice now requires the use of encryption to authenticate machine connections. While that may seem daunting, as one summit attendee explained,

“We need to adjust the idea that ‘no one wants to encrypt their data unless they have to.’ The ‘have to’ is a way of life, not an option. We’re way past the era when people didn’t want to lock their front door. We might want a different world, but we must live in and operate in the world we have.”

Cloud-Native Automation for Machine Identity Management

The byproduct of utilizing encryption in verifying every machine-to-machine interaction is a torrential flood of machine identities repeatedly changing throughout your enterprise ecosystems, including your network and cloud. The constant transformation of machine identities requires that they have the automated intelligence necessary to make decisions on which machines can be trusted to prevent access to devices, for example, communicating for nefarious purposes.

As Venafi explains, machines will grant access to any other machine without this automated intelligence, regardless of intent. Without robust automated protections for machine identities, cyberattacks can navigate around security controls and cripple your network. Today, hackers spend substantial time and energy on falsifying machine identities.

As explained at the Global Summit, “Cloud-native environments are often highly dynamic and much less fixed in nature.” It is for this reason that “high levels of automation are an absolute must.”

Automating Application Integrity with Code Signing

Just as automation for validating machine identity is critical for cloud-scale infrastructure, cloud-native applications also need increasing levels of security and validation. Code signing is a crucial method for proving application integrity.

Code signing uses cryptographically secure operations to prove that an application has not been tampered with or altered in any way after it was signed. It is also used to authenticate the identity of the author of the application. Users can more confidently ensure these signed applications are valid and unadulterated before executing or deploying.

As CI/CD pipelines bring about wider adoption of automation, moving code from check-in to production, automated code signing enables DevOps engineers to weave critical security capabilities into their build processes.

A New Solution Made Possible Through the Venafi Machine Identity Management Fund

The Machine Identity Management Development Fund is a global initiative designed to increase the visibility, intelligence, and automation required for effective machine identity management across enterprise networks.

The $12.5 million Fund seeks to develop and bring to market machine identity management solutions for DevOps, cloud-native, microservices, IoT, and beyond.

Out of the Venafi Machine Identity Management Fund, Sidechain Security produced its latest solution: Venafi CodeSign Protect Plugin for Microsoft Azure DevOps.

New Sidechain Plugin Integrates Venafi CodeSign Protect with Azure DevOps

One of the fastest-growing trends in cybersecurity is the migration of DevOps to the cloud. Microsoft Azure DevOps is a leading platform in this transformation; however, as Venafi articulates, “Azure DevOps teams don’t have an easy and fast way to sign code securely and with the approval and visibility of security teams.”

Enter Sidechain’s new plugin for Azure DevOps. The plugin allows users to seamlessly integrate secure code signing into build processes in Azure DevOps without increasing workloads for DevOps teams. Venafi CodeSign Protect ensures that InfoSec-defined security policies for code signing are enforced, even in a Microsoft Azure DevOps environment. It is a complete turnkey solution, deployable as a one-step code signing task, and works with Azure DevOps Build Pipelines in the cloud and on-premises.

Using this new solution, businesses eliminate the complexity and burden of custom integrations into build pipelines. Further, the tool extends the value of customer’s existing investments in the cloud. This, in turn, rapidly modernizes and accelerates the software development lifecycle (SDLC).

Recognized Best in Class DevOps Support with Sidechain

Built with the latest data security best practices, this new integration comes equipped with Sidechain’s experience supporting clients in securely modernizing their DevOps processes.

To learn more about our latest integration, check out this two-minute explainer video, or visit the to discover how you can transform and secure your DevOps with Sidechain’s Venafi CodeSign Protect Plugin for Microsoft Azure DevOps.

Stay tuned for next week’s Sidechain Security article taking a deeper dive into DevSecOps, including its importance and the most critical points to get started.

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