If one installs a VM with "high security" on a host machine with "low security", will the VM be only as secure as the machine it's installed on, or will the high-security aspects from the VM (e.g. latest service-packs and updates, anti-virus software, firewall, etc.) compensate for the fallibility of the host?
In my line of work, I occasionally need to remotely access customer sites. Customers vary in their remote access processes. Some use dialup, some use VPN and some use web portals.
The customers also vary in their security procedures; some are fairly relaxed and some are far more rigid.
I have recently been asked to connect to a site via a web portal that does a sweep of my machine, looking for various things such as:
- Approved OS level
- Approved Firewall installed and active
- Approved anti-virus software, spyware software, etc.
- Several other factors
I discovered that my local machine's OS (Windows 8) is not supported by the tool; it looks for "More recent operating systems, such as Windows 7". My guess is the tool is a bit out of date... It also didn't detect our corporate firewall.
Anyway, the customer site recommended that I use VMWare on my machine and install an XP VM. I did this and it did pass all the security restrictions from the web portal.