The growth of virtualization and cloud computing—and the nimble and responsive architectures they enable—has brought companies unquestioned benefits, ranging from increased business agility to reduced application costs. But the heterogeneous environments most companies are now overseeing also have brought unprecedented complexity and vulnerability. With so many sub-environments and so much cross-application traffic to monitor—not to mention an increasingly sophisticated and fast-growing population of bad guys to safeguard against—it’s become difficult for enterprises to even detect a threat, much less respond in a timely fashion. Such is the inescapable takeaway from a recent survey that the SANS Institute conducted for adaptive security vendor Illumio. “When it comes to limiting damage and preventing data breaches, time continues to be the biggest challenge for security and risk professionals,” said SANS analyst Dave Shackleford, author of “The State of Dynamic Data Center and Cloud Security in the Modern Enterprise” report. “If our security stance is going to improve, we need better visibility, the ability to make configuration changes faster and to contain attacks more quickly.” The survey polled 430 security and risk professionals from the SANS community.