Containers

10 Best Docker Containers for Security in 2024

Discover the best Docker containers for security in 2024 to improve code quality, minimize risk, and increase visibility.

Many are embracing running containers as opposed to running a virtual machines instance for workloads. There are so many great Docker containers users can look at for many different use cases and applications. However, there are also excellent container security tool images and solutions we can use for Docker security and securing Docker container image configurations, and giving visibility to vulnerabilities in the context of containerization. They can also help sure of code quality for development (eliminate code smells – yes this is a real term) and help minimize the risk of bad code. This blog post dives into 10 of the best containers and container images to enhance your container security posture in 2024 as well as example Docker run and Docker compose code on your server platform.

1. SonarQube

SonarQube is a containerized security tool that definitely makes the list of best Docker Containers for security in 2024 with a free community edition that provides a first line of defense for your resources and service configurations. It gives you static code analysis, and helps to identify vulnerabilities, bugs, and code issues early in the development lifecycle for organizations. SonarQube can be integrated into your CI/CD pipeline and enables resolving issues with code and security before they reach production. All of these things help reduce the attack surface of your apps.

Sonarqube
Sonarqube

Learn more about Sonarqube and its integration here: https://www.sonarsource.com/.

Features:

  • Supports 25+ programming languages
  • Detects vulnerabilities, code issues, and potential bugs
  • Offers various metrics for developers and their code quality and security
  • Integrates with popular CI/CD tools

Docker Compose snippet:

version: '3'
services:
  sonarqube:
    image: sonarqube:latest
    ports:
      - "9000:9000"  # SonarQube web interface
    volumes:
      - sonarqube_data:/var/sonarqube/data  # Persistent storage for SonarQube data
volumes:
  sonarqube_data: {}

2. Sysdig Secure

Sysdig Secure provides container runtime security, monitoring, and forensics. It does this not only for containerized environments but also for Kubernetes and microservices. It provides visibility into your container infrastructure and helps to detect and respond to security threats in real time. It is noteworthy to mention, that this is a paid solution. Sysdig also produces Falco, which we will also cover below.

Sysdid
Sysdid

Learn more about Sysdig here: Sysdig | Security for Containers, Kubernetes, and Cloud.

Features:

3. Falco

Falco is a lightweight runtime security tool that continuously monitors system calls within containers. It can detect activity that is out of the ordinary (malware and other anomalous communication) as well as potential security threats. This can help identity attacks and even prevent attacks before they occur.

Falco
Falco

Learn more about Falco here: Falco.

Features:

  • It is lightweight and efficient which minimizes any performance impact
  • Monitors syscall activity for suspicious behavior
  • It provides a flexible rules engine for custom threat detection
  • It integrates with security information and event management (SIEM) tools

Docker run snippet including the daemon socket:

docker run --rm -i -t \
--privileged \
-v /var/run/docker.sock:/host/var/run/docker.sock \
-v /dev:/host/dev \
-v /proc:/host/proc:ro \
-v /boot:/host/boot:ro \
-v /lib/modules:/host/lib/modules:ro \
-v /usr:/host/usr:ro \
-v /etc:/host/etc:ro \
falcosecurity/falco:latest

4. Hadolint

Hadolint is a Dockerfile linter which has many benefits in practice. It is a hardening layer that helps enforce best practices and identify errors in your Dockerfiles and other ways. By making sure your Dockerfiles are secure and efficient, Hadolint helps you build secure container images for your container registries (self-hosted or Docker Hub) from the ground up, which also helps with compliance and security policies.

Hadolint
Hadolint

Learn more about Hadolint and download here: GitHub – hadolint/hadolint: Dockerfile linter, validate inline bash, written in Haskell.

Features:

  • Lints Dockerfiles for security vulnerabilities and best practices processes
  • Identifies potential issues like unused stages, inefficient base images, and hardcoded secrets code content before these are hosted on your servers
  • Offers suggestions for improvement and changes
  • Integrates with CI/CD pipelines for automated checks and results as part of your pipeline

Hadolint can be integrated as a pre-build step in your CI/CD pipeline. Also, you can point Hadolint using a Docker container to your Dockerfile like the following:

docker run --rm -i hadolint/hadolint < Dockerfile
# OR
docker run --rm -i ghcr.io/hadolint/hadolint < Dockerfile

5. Trivy

Trivy is a simple and comprehensive vulnerability scanner specifically designed for containers. It integrates seamlessly into your CI/CD pipeline, scanning container images in your registry for protection against known vulnerabilities in packages, operating systems, and libraries inspection. This can help you find these before an attacker in your implementation (host machine or cloud).

Trivy
Trivy

Features:

  • Scans container images for vulnerabilities
  • Supports various image formats (Docker, OCI)
  • Integrates with popular CI/CD tools
  • Offers SBOM (Software Bill of Materials) generation for transparency

Docker Compose snippet:

version: '3'
services:
trivy-scanner:
image: aquasec/trivy:0.49.1
command: ["trivy", "image", "<your-image-name>"] # Replace with the image you want to scan

Or you can use Docker run:

docker run -v /var/run/docker.sock:/var/run/docker.sock -v $HOME/Library/Caches:/root/.cache/ aquasec/trivy:0.49.1 image python:3.4-alpine

6. Snyk CLI

Snyk CLI is a containerized tool that extends Snyk’s vulnerability scanning capabilities beyond container images. It allows you to scan your entire codebase for integrity, dependencies, and container images for vulnerabilities. It helps with an overall view of your application security posture architecture and its effectiveness from a security perspective.

Snyk
Snyk

Features:

  • Scans codebases for vulnerabilities in various programming languages
  • Analyzes dependencies for known security risks
  • Scans container images for vulnerabilities
  • Integrates with CI/CD pipelines for automated security checks

Docker Compose snippet:

version: '3'
services:
  snyk-scanner:
    image: snyk/cli:latest
    command: ["snyk", "test", "--file", "path/to/your/codebase"]  # Replace with your codebase path

7. Grype

Grype is an open-source vulnerability scanner specifically designed for container images. It focuses on analyzing the Bill of Materials (BOM) of container images, identifying vulnerabilities within the listed packages and dependencies.

Grype
Grype

Features:

  • Analyzes container image BOM for vulnerabilities
  • Supports various image formats (Docker, OCI)
  • Integrates with CI/CD pipelines
  • Offers SBOM generation for improved transparency

Docker run snippet:

version: '3'
services:
  grype-scanner:
    image: anchore/grype:latest
    command: ["grype", "<your-image-name>"]  # Replace with the image you want to scan

8. Syft

Syft is another open-source tool that focuses on software dependencies. It analyzes the dependencies used in your project, identifying potential vulnerabilities across various package formats. Syft helps you understand the overall security posture of your application’s dependencies.

Syft
Syft

Docker Compose snippet:

version: '3'
services:
  syft-scanner:
    image: anchore/syft:latest
    command: ["syft", "bill-of-materials", "<your-application-directory>"]  # Replace with your application directory

9. Gitleaks

Gitleaks is a security scanner specifically designed for Git repositories. It scans your code repository and files for leaks of sensitive information, such as access keys, passwords, and other secrets used by development teams. Early detection of such leaks can prevent unauthorized access and security breaches from attackers in your production environment.

Gitleaks
Gitleaks

Features:

  • Scans Git repositories for leaks of sensitive information
  • Supports various types of secrets (e.g., API keys, passwords, tokens)
  • Offers custom rule creation for specific needs
  • Integrates with CI/CD pipelines for automated checks

Docker run snippet commands:#

Docker (DockerHub)
docker pull zricethezav/gitleaks:latest
docker run -v ${path_to_host_folder_to_scan}:/path zricethezav/gitleaks:latest [COMMAND] --source="/path" [OPTIONS]

# Docker (ghcr.io)
docker pull ghcr.io/gitleaks/gitleaks:latest
docker run -v ${path_to_host_folder_to_scan}:/path ghcr.io/gitleaks/gitleaks:latest [COMMAND] --source="/path" [OPTIONS]

10. Docker Bench

Docker Bench is a script that checks your Docker host and container configurations against the CIS Docker Benchmark. It identifies potential security misconfigurations and helps with the process to harden your container environment and hosts deployment.

Docker bench
Docker bench

Features:

Docker Bench doesn’t require dedicated docker images running in containers. You can run it directly on your host system to scan your Docker configuration.

Here are the general steps for using Docker Bench (refer to official documentation for detailed instructions):

  1. Download the Docker Bench script.
  2. Run the script with appropriate flags (e.g., docker-bench security).
  3. Review the output and address any security warnings.

Wrapping up the best Docker containers for security in 2024

Running Docker containers provides a world of possibility, including great features and technology capabilities. However, as we have covered in this best Docker containers for security in 2024 guide, there are many great security solutions we can deploy for deep container visibility, Docker image security, help with compliance policies, and deploying Docker containers with quality code releases.

Many solutions can scan images, check for container vulnerabilities, and security best practices, and help protect running containers. Keep in mind this isn’t a replacement for other security best practices like isolation, auditing, proper authentication and authorization, and the principle of least privilege to help prevent privilege escalation, encryption, logging, patching, access control, and securing networks, When it comes to ensuring the effectiveness of these security measures in Docker containers, it is crucial to choose the right containers that prioritize security and offer robust features. sandboxing, using a firewall, and other intrusion detection solutions. It is simply another layer of security that helps anyone with the need of securing their container infrastructure deployments.

Subscribe to VirtualizationHowto via Email 🔔

Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Brandon Lee

Brandon Lee is the Senior Writer, Engineer and owner at Virtualizationhowto.com and has over two decades of experience in Information Technology. Having worked for numerous Fortune 500 companies as well as in various industries, Brandon has extensive experience in various IT segments and is a strong advocate for open source technologies. Brandon holds many industry certifications, loves the outdoors and spending time with family.

Related Articles

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.