Open Source Summit — The Linux Foundation announced the intent to form the Confidential Computing Consortium, a community dedicated to defining and accelerating the adoption of confidential computing. Companies committed to this work include Alibaba, Arm, Baidu, Google Cloud, IBM, Intel, Microsoft, Red Hat, Swisscom, and Tencent.

Across industries, computing is moving to span multiple environments, from on-premises to public cloud to edge. As companies move these workloads to different environments, they need protection controls for sensitive IP and workload data and are increasingly seeking greater assurances and more transparency of these controls. Current approaches in cloud computing address data at rest and in transit but encrypting data in use is considered the third and possibly most challenging step to providing a fully encrypted lifecycle for sensitive data. Confidential computing will enable encrypted data to be processed in memory without exposing it to the rest of the system and reduce exposure for sensitive data and provide greater control and transparency for users.

“The earliest work on technologies that have the ability to transform an industry is often done in collaboration across the industry and with open source technologies,” said Jim Zemlin, executive director at The Linux Foundation. “The Confidential Computing Consortium is a leading indicator of what’s to come for security in computing and will help define and build open technologies to support this trust infrastructure for data in use.”

The Confidential Computing Consortium will bring together hardware vendors, cloud providers, developers, open-source experts and academics to accelerate the confidential computing market; influence technical and regulatory standards; and build open-source tools that provide the right environment for TEE development. The organization will also anchor industry outreach and education initiatives.

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