Cloud Security

Best Container Scanning Tools: Top 13 Tools

The digital environment heavily relies on containers. As a result, it’s crucial to secure its security. The need to preserve containers is more important than ever in 2024. So, it’s crucial to use solid and demanding solutions to defend containerized applications from changing threats. Containers have changed how we create, distribute, and manage software applications. […]

Sharon R.

Written by Sharon R.

August 28, 2023 | 10 min read

The digital environment heavily relies on containers. As a result, it’s crucial to secure its security. The need to preserve containers is more important than ever in 2024. So, it’s crucial to use solid and demanding solutions to defend containerized applications from changing threats.

Containers have changed how we create, distribute, and manage software applications. Containers have emerged as the preferred option for businesses seeking scalability and agility due to their minimal weight. However, as containers grow in popularity, they must have strong security.

You can use Container Scanning Tools to discover your containers’ vulnerabilities and monitor them regularly for potential threats or bugs.

This article will examine the key features of the top 10 Container Scanning Tools.

Table of Contents:

  1. What is Container Scanning?
  2. Why is Container Scanning Important?
  3. What are Container Scanning Tools?
  4. Best 13 Container Scanning Tools
  5. How to choose the best Container Scanning Tool?
  6. Conclusion

What is Container Scanning?

Most container image vulnerabilities are relatively simple to find using container scanning. Using automated tools to do container scanning involves comparing each container’s contents to a database of known vulnerabilities. They will mark an image as insecure if it depends on a library or other component with a known vulnerability.

Why is Container Scanning Important?

Although containers provide built-in security advantages, such as greater application separation, they also diversify a company’s risk environment. Massively increasing container use in production systems makes containers a more alluring target for malicious actors and raises system demands. A single vulnerable or compromised container may act as a point of entry into an organization’s larger environment. Processes for scanning images examine both the images’ contents and how they were created. Finding weaknesses, bad practices, and safety issues is the aim.

What are Container Scanning Tools?

Container Security Tools manage access, assess security, and protect cloud computing infrastructure supporting containerized applications. With the help of management features, administrators can regulate who has access to containerized data and how applications are integrated. Using container scanning tools to do container scanning involves comparing each container’s contents to a database of known vulnerabilities. They will mark an image as insecure if it depends on a library or other component with a known vulnerability.

Best 13 Container Scanning Tools

Here is a list of the top 13 Container Scanning Tools:

#1 PingSafe

PingSafe is a complete cloud security tool that offers cloud security for businesses of all sizes and industries. It can help get rid of any existing and discovered threats and issues. It is a leading platform that is familiar with the attack strategy. PingSafe is also one of the container scanning tools.

Container Scanning Tools - PingSafe Homepage | PingSafe

Features:

  • Misconfigurations in the cloud are automatically handled and fixed. Graphs display misconfigurations across resources, lateral movement paths, and impact radius.
  • Notifying security defaults, monitoring ongoing security posture of new or existing cloud services, and concentrating on security issues and best practices.
  • Infrastructure as a Code: Compare IaC implementation and configuration to other standards, such as PCI-DSS and CIS benchmarks. CI/CD integration support can be used to stop merge and pull requests with hardcoded secrets.
  • Determine the cloud assets/resources with known CVEs (Intelligence obtained from ten or more sources with comprehensive coverage) for vulnerability management. 
  • Threat Watch: A dashboard for tracking every issue with your environment’s zero-day vulnerabilities.

#2 Clair

Clair is an open-source project that offers a tool for static analysis of vulnerabilities in apps and docker containers to monitor the security of your containers. An analysis engine controlled by an API called Clair checks containers layer by layer for known security issues.

Any threat or problem that is already listed in the National Vulnerability Database (NVD) will have its information retrieved and provided in the report.

Container Scanning Tools - Clair Homepage | PingSafe

Features:

  • Check for current vulnerabilities and stop their occurrence in the future.
  • REST API is made available for integration with other tools.
  • Notifies the user whenever a vulnerability is found
  • A report in HTML format is provided with all the scan information.
  • Updates metadata regularly.

#3 Anchore

An open-source project called Anchore performs in-depth analyses of Docker images. Anchore also offers container scanning tools.

Additionally, it certifies a Docker image, indicating whether or not it is secure. Kubernetes, Rancher, Amazon ECS, and Docker Swarm are orchestration solutions that can be utilized with the Anchore engine. Additionally, Jenkins plugins for scanning the CI/CD pipeline include Anchore.

Container Scanning Tools - Anchore Homepage | PingSafe

Features:

  • Provides extensive investigation of software artifacts like jar files, OS packages, and container images.
  • Effortlessly integrates with your CI/CD pipeline to discover security risks.
  • Creates and implements rules to stop creating and deploying hazardous images
  • Before deploying them on an orchestration platform, ensure only trusted and secure pictures are present.
  • Make specific checks for exposed ports, image secrets, configuration files, and vulnerabilities.

#4 Dagda

An open-source application called Dagda analyzes known vulnerabilities in Docker images and containers, including those caused by viruses, malware, and trojans. To find these vulnerabilities, it makes use of the ClamAV antivirus engine. Dadga offers container scanning tools.

Container Scanning Tools - Dagada Homepage | PingSafe

Features:

  • Examines the needs for PHP, Java, Python, Node.js, JavaScript, and other technologies.
  • Utilize Falco integration to keep track of the active containers.
  • Maintains the history of every container or Docker image by storing each analysis report in MongoDB.

#5 Falco

Falco is a Kubernetes threat detection engine that is an open-source project. It is a runtime security tool for Kubernetes hosts and containers that may spot unusual activities. It recognizes any strange activities in your application and warns you of potential hazards in real-time.

Container Scanning Tools - Falco Homepage | PingSafe

Features:

  • Acting as a runtime security tool that tracks how your Kubernetes cluster’s applications are used. 
  • It has YAML-formatted rules that can be customized. 
  • It keeps track of events and gives notifications when an attack or improperly configured application is found.

#6 Aqua Security

Aqua Security protects applications created with cloud-native technologies like containers. For orchestrators like Kubernetes, it offers container scanning tools and management services.

It is a comprehensive security platform offering container scanning tools to guarantee the safety and security of the programs running inside the containers.

Developers can create images by using a variety of tools and libraries. They can scan such photos using Aqua security to ensure they are secure, free of known vulnerabilities, passwords, or secrets, and without any other security threats that might expose them to risk.

Container Scanning Tools - Aqua Homepage | PingSafe

Features:

  • Container monitoring across all platforms.
  • Security risk evaluations.
  • Malware detection.

#7 AWS Vulnerability Scanning Tool

Amazon Inspector is one of the container scanning tools that may be used by companies using Amazon Web Services to inspect their AWS workloads.

Container Scanning Tools - AWS Vulnerability Scanning Tool Homepage | PingSafe

Features:

  • Continuous vulnerability scanning for Lambda functions, container images, and AWS Elastic Compute Cloud (EC2)
  • Finds and examines workloads
  • Investigate potential vulnerabilities and network exposure
  • It gives a very accurate risk score to help with remedy prioritization.
  • Integrates with AWS Security Hub and Amazon EventBridge

#8 Harbor

Harbor is a trusted, open-source cloud native registry that offers role-based access control (RBAC) and security policies. It stores, authenticates, and checks docker images for security flaws. It may be installed on any system that supports Docker, even a Kubernetes cluster.

Container Scanning Tools - Harbor Homepage | PingSafe

Features:

  • Utilizes Docker Compose for simple deployment and offers security and vulnerability analysis
  • Multi-tenant content validation and signing
  • Integration of identities with role-based access management
  • Image replication between instances with an extensible API and user interface

#9 Qualys

Qualys container security is an instrument for finding, following, and continually guarding container environments. Images or containers in the DevOps pipeline and deployments in cloud or on-premise systems are scanned for vulnerabilities.

Container Scanning Tools - Qualys Homepage | PingSafe

Features:

  • Enables users to identify unmanaged assets continuously, 
  • Automatically discovers and classifies known and undiscovered assets, 
  • Builds automated workflows to manage them efficiently.

#10 Grype

One of the numerous tools you can use to assist in securing your containers is the scanner to check container security. Grype is a security scanner for containers that can detect vulnerabilities in any container, regardless of platform.

It can be found on GitHub and is open source. For Grype, there is a command-line program and a web application.

Container Scanning Tools - Grype Homepage | PingSafe

Features:

  • All well-known operating systems, such as Redhat, Oracle, Ubuntu, CentOS, etc., are supported.
  • Simple installation and support for several additional programming languages, such as Java, Ruby, PHP, and DotNet. Accepts input in the Syft, SPDX, and CycloneDX SBOM formats.
  • Go templates can be used to determine its output format.
  • Enhances the reliability of vulnerability matching by supporting a variety of sources for creating vulnerability databases.

#11 JFrog Xray

JFrog Xray is an ongoing open-source artifact analysis and security tool.

You may continuously check your artifacts and dependencies with JFrog Xray for security flaws and licensing compliance problems.

Xray, a tool for universal artifact analysis, proactively discovers license risks and security flaws. Native integration between Xray and JFrog Artifactory enables insight into all artifact metadata, including security status, before it manifests in production.

Container Scanning Tools - JFrog Xray Homepage | PingSafe

Features:

  • Prompt detection.
  • Cloud, hybrid, or multi-cloud solution that is self-hosted.
  • Recursive Deep Scanning.
  • Analysis of Continuous Impact.
  • Artifactory native integration.
  • Database of Vulnerabilities.

#12 OpenSCAP Workbench

OpenSCAP is a toolset ecosystem for administrators and security auditors that includes a variety of free configuration baselines, security benchmark guidelines, and open-source tools.

To execute scans on virtual machines, containers, and images, you can install the OpenSCAP Workbench as a GUI if you’re using Fedora, Red Hat Enterprise Linux, CentOS, or Scientific Linux.

Container Scanning Tools - OpenSCAP Homepage | PingSafe

Features:

  • Open source, so free of cost for anmy platform
  • The OpenSCAP ecosystem offers tools and policies for a fast, affordable, and adaptable deployment of security compliance.
  • Automated vulnerability checking allows you to take steps to prevent attacks before they happen.

#13 Cilium

Network connectivity security is the focus of Cilium. The Linux container platforms Docker and Kubernetes are compatible thanks to Cilium’s addition of security visibility and control mechanisms.

It is driven by BPF, a Linux kernel feature originally known as Berkeley Packet Filter. The intriguing feature of its low-level implementation is that Cilium security policies can be updated and applied without affecting application code or container configuration.

Container Scanning Tools - cillium Homepage | PingSafe

Features:

  • Networking based on eBPF.
  • Services for Kubernetes that replace Kube-Proxy with Cilium eBPF.
  • Balance of loads for services.
  • Integration of platforms and native cloud support.
  • Chaining CNI.

How to choose the best Container Scanning Tool?

The following factors helped us decide which container scanning tools to include on our list:

  • It must be able to control and keep track of who has access rights and roles.
  • It must assure compliance while enforcing rules from a single location.
  • It should be able to inspect big assemblages of containers and spot any image imperfections.
  • Allowing for detecting dangerous software while being tested in a controlled setting and observing the effects of the preset rules.
  • Reports should be made, audits should be done, and data regarding the containers should be saved to analyze and prove compliance.

Conclusion

The scans must be carried out whether or not an organization decides that Container Scanning Tools best fit the organization’s needs. Cloud containers can be more challenging to configure than many other assets and more vulnerable to remote assault. Every security procedure starts with identifying potential security weaknesses before an external attacker does.