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Capital One Financial Begins Critical Stack Beta

December 04, 2017

Containers and microservices can go a long way in helping organizations quickly build, test, and introduce new services and capabilities. But compliance and security concerns can throw a wrench into the works, even when these advanced technologies and architectures are employed.

To address such gating factors, Capital One Financial Corp. is introducing a container orchestration platform called Critical Stack.

"With Critical Stack, our goal is to help more organizations take advantage of the benefits of containerized infrastructure without sacrificing security, compliance, and simplicity," said Liam Randall, co-founder of Critical Stack Inc., who joined Capital One through an acquisition in 2016. "At Capital One, we have standardized on microservices and containerization in the cloud and recognize the needs that large enterprises face as they modernize their computing infrastructure. We believe that Critical Stack will help other companies adopt containers at scale."

Critical Stack, which is now in beta, automates compliance and security controls, and orchestrates streamlined deployment and configuration of apps and infrastructure in the cloud.

"What Critical Stack means to the enterprise is that the application is the first-class citizen," said Dustin Webber, co-founder and CTO of Critical Stack. "Critical Stack is designed to empower developers to spend less time setting up and operating container infrastructure and more time solving the hard problems that really matter."

Microservices is a topic that’s popping up with increased frequency – and not just from industry disruptors like Google, Lyft, and Netflix. Just last month there were at least three microservices announcements by established companies. AT&T announced it had tapped IBM to help it embrace microservices. Unified communications solution provider BroadSoft announced its support of a microservices architecture. And TIBCO introduced Project Mashling, which leverages microservices.

“Microservices is an architectural style that enables digital transformation at speed and scale,” explains IBM Distinguished Engineer William A. Brown. “It’s a way for any company to digitally transform itself and effectively compete in an API economy.”

This architecture allows for the decomposition of monolithic software solutions. That’s important because breaking down software into more bite-sized pieces allows developers to create and recreate, test, and introduce new applications, features, and services much more quickly. Brown says microservices can reduce development-to-introduction timelines from six months to a week or less. And that can allow for greater efficiency and new revenue opportunities.

Edited by Mandi Nowitz

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