Skip to main content
Microsoft Security

The next wave of multicloud security with Microsoft Defender for Cloud, a Cloud-Native Application Protection Platform (CNAPP)

With digital transformation in the face of macroeconomic pressures, strategies to optimize both cloud environments and cloud security are increasingly appealing to enterprises. Organizations worry about vulnerabilities in code getting deployed, critical misconfigurations, overprivileged access to cloud infrastructure, and evolving threats that can cause sensitive data loss. Unfortunately, most reported security incidents involve bad actors exploiting vulnerabilities that security teams aren’t even aware of.

The answer is an end-to-end solution that offers comprehensive cloud security from development to runtime—a Cloud-Native Application Protection Platform (CNAPP).

Let’s dive into what’s driving CNAPP adoption and walk through how Microsoft Defender for Cloud—one of the only platforms with comprehensive coverage and integrated insights all in one solution—can help organizations embed security from code to cloud.

What is CNAPP, and why does it matter?

CNAPPs are the leading edge of cloud security. A CNAPP unifies security and compliance capabilities to prevent, detect, and respond to modern cloud security threats from development to runtime.

A CNAPP delivers a unified experience for organizations that synthesizes insights and drives effective collaboration among developers, DevOps teams, security teams, and security operations center (SOC) analysts to reduce excessive risks for cloud-native applications and to embed security across the continuous integration and continuous delivery (CI/CD) lifecycle.

Why do organizations need a CNAPP for modern cloud security?

A CNAPP directly addresses critical challenges faced by cloud security teams as they aim to strengthen their security posture, detect and respond to threats, and prevent critical data breaches:

Key CNAPP capabilities

Security teams need an end-to-end platform for cloud security. This means security integration into DevOps, visibility across their multicloud environments, a prioritized view of their most critical vulnerabilities and misconfigurations, built-in governance and automated remediation tools, and the means to detect and respond to modern threats across their cloud workloads.

To achieve this, an effective CNAPP should combine capabilities across cloud security posture management, DevOps security management, cloud workload protection, cloud infrastructure entitlement management, and network security.

Microsoft is recognized as a Representative Vendor in the Gartner® 2023 Market Guide for Cloud-Native Application Protection Platforms (CNAPPs).

Microsoft’s unified CNAPP includes:

Chart demonstrating the segments of Microsoft's cloud-native application protection platform, including cloud security posture management, cloud workload protection, DevSecOps, and cloud infrastructure entitlement management.

Microsoft’s CNAPP: Comprehensive cloud-native protection with unparalleled integrated insights

Microsoft’s comprehensive CNAPP seamlessly combines security and compliance capabilities into a single platform to provide end-to-end cloud security for full-stack workloads across Amazon Web Services, Google Cloud Platform, and Azure Cloud Services. Security admins no longer need to manually synthesize data and tools across products, and instead can proactively address security threats across their multicloud and hybrid environments in a single platform.

Defender for Cloud is empowering security teams with a more comprehensive and differentiated approach:

Even with these capabilities, Microsoft is only getting started. And our continued investments for ushering the next wave of cloud-native security is featured in Omdia’s February report on Defender for Cloud, “Microsoft is developing a full cloud-native security platform.

More innovations to come

To learn more about critical upcoming CNAPP innovations in Microsoft Defender for Cloud, register to join me at Microsoft Secure, our free, virtual Microsoft Security event on March 28, 2023, as I’ll share news in Breakout Session 11, “Protect multicloud environments with cloud-native security innovations.” And immediately following this session, attend our CNAPP interactive product session (CATE11) to get your questions answered.

You can also explore Microsoft Defender for Cloud and sign up for a free trial today.

To learn more about Microsoft Security solutions, visit our website. Bookmark the Security blog to keep up with our expert coverage on security matters. Also, follow us on LinkedIn (Microsoft Security) and Twitter (@MSFTSecurity) for the latest news and updates on cybersecurity.

12021 State of Cloud Permissions Risks Report, Microsoft. 2021.

Gartner® , Market Guide for Cloud-Native Application Protection Platforms, March 14, 2023. Neil MacDonald, et al.

GARTNER is a registered trademark and service mark of Gartner, Inc. and/or its affiliates in the U.S. and internationally and is used herein with permission. All rights reserved. Gartner does not endorse any vendor, product or service depicted in its research publications and does not advise technology users to select only those vendors with the highest ratings or other designation. Gartner research publications consist of the opinions of Gartner’s Research & Advisory organization and should not be construed as statements of fact. Gartner disclaims all warranties, expressed or implied, with respect to this research, including any warranties of merchantability or fitness for a particular purpose.