We’re excited to announce that the latest release of Calico includes encryption for data-in-transit. Calico is the open source networking and network security solution for containers, virtual machines, and host-based workloads, offering connectivity and security for container workloads.
One of Calico’s best-known security features is its implementation of Kubernetes Network Policy, providing a way to secure container workloads by restricting traffic to and from trusted sources. This enables the traffic to be controlled, however, the traffic itself had previously remained vulnerable to interception.
A common solution to this problem is to encrypt traffic at the application layer using protocols like Transport Layer Security (TLS). Traffic can also be encrypted at a lower infrastructure level using IPsec. However, these approaches introduce an additional layer of complexity. Calico avoids that complexity by utilizing WireGuard to implement data-in-transit encryption.
WireGuard is run as a module inside the Linux kernel and provides better performance and lower power consumption than IPsec and OpenVPN tunneling protocols. The Linux version of WireGuard reached a stable production release in March and was introduced as a tech preview in the 3.14 release of Project Calico. We are pleased to announce that WireGuard encryption is now generally available with Calico v3.15.
If your network security requires that all traffic in your cluster be encrypted, Calico offers an easy way to do that. All you need is a Kubernetes cluster with WireGuard installed on the host operating system. You’ll find a complete list of supported operating systems and installation instructions on the WireGuard website. Once you have that taken care of, you can enable WireGuard on Calico.
Want to give it a try? Check out this blog, which will walk you through the simple steps to enable data-in-transit encryption in Calico. With minimal effort, you can provide necessary protection for sensitive data in your Kubernetes cluster.
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