Learn the basics of Istio

Companies are undergoing massive transformations as they transition from monolithic applications to microservices. Microservices allow for faster delivery and time-to-deployment. However, not relying on those monolithic application servers places a significant burden on microservice development teams to handle responsibilities such as security, resiliency, and observability.

We’ll walk you through how Istio can help, but we also have an upcoming event that will go into greater detail:

  • If you’re on the business side, or a decision maker new to Istio, sign up here for our webinar, where we’ll tackle how and why Istio can best address your business needs.
  • If you’re a developer, sign up here for our livestream, where we’ll answer your questions about all things Istio implementation.

The problems Istio addresses

Now that security, resiliency, and observability are each the responsibility of the individual teams managing the different microservices, there’s no uniformity or consistency. That’s a huge issue that Istio helps to address.

Risk of security exploits

The threat of cyberattacks is greater than ever – and it comes with a hefty price tag. The average cost of a data breach is $4.24 million. And that’s just revenue. There’s also a reputational risk at play, which can cost organizations customers. Automating security measures can help organizations stay on top of such threats and protect their reputations.

Risk of outages

Downtime comes with its own business costs, including lower customer satisfaction, loss of revenue, reputation loss, and loss of customers. Organizations need to stay on top of the issues that cause downtime, from service interruptions to traffic surges. Fortunately, the strategies that most effectively reduce downtime can also be automated.

Lack of observability

Being able to detect and plan for these issues is critical. Organizations that are considered leaders in observability – the ability to see the state of a system through its outputs – have an annual average downtime cost of $2.5M, while beginners have a whopping annual average downtime cost of $23.8M. Access logs, like those offered by Istio, offer that visibility.

How Istio helps

Here are a few scenarios where Istio can be especially valuable, saving your company time and money by automating important tasks while mitigating risk.

Automating security

Encryption of the data in transit is the primary benefit of TLS, while mTLS adds the ability to validate the identity of both client and service. Network traffic is unencrypted and anyone that can get access to the network can observe, opening organizations up to security risks.

That’s why zero trust, where the target state is that there are no implicit security assumptions, is so valuable. All workloads authenticate and are authorized to access other services. We know zero trust is important, but it’s challenging for companies to implement on their own.

That’s where automation through a service like Istio is critical. Istio offers transport security, identity authorization, and cert management. With Istio, users get instant mTLS.

Mitigating failure

In cloud native environments, containers and services go up and down – and there are going to be failures. Often, those failures are transient and happen for a short period of time, eventually going away.

There are common mitigation strategies for these failures, like, in the event of a service interruption, allowing for a certain number of retries in the sidecar, or a circuit breaker that flips a switch to stop additional traffic that could overwhelm the network.

Istio can help users put those strategies into place as policies that control all services, with no intervention needed from development teams.

Gaining valuable insights

With development teams deploying many different types of services, users need to be able to look at the overall system in a consistent and uniform manner, then take action based on that view. Users should be able to answer questions like “how can I tell if a service is healthy?” or “when can I potentially expect an outage?”

Through Istio, there are standardized access logs that serve as a true recording of what went into or out of a given service. There are also metrics that can be viewed in out-of-the-box and custom dashboards.

That level of observability can save millions of dollars a year, allowing users to get ahead of potential downtime issues.

Learn more about Istio

Risks to security, challenges with downtime, and inability to predict issues come at the cost of lower customer satisfaction, loss of revenue, reputation loss, and loss of customers.

Istio is the ideal platform for helping ensure that your company has security, resiliency, and observability across all of your microservices.

Want to delve into greater detail about the basics of Istio?

Istio for developers and platform teams - livestream Thursday, Jan. 19 at 11 am EST - Keith Babo, product manager at Solo.io and James Governor, analyst and co-founder and RedMonk - Register now

Delivering business value with Istio - Wednesday 25 January, 11 am EST - Register now