Linux Foundation: Confidential computing market to reach $54 billion in 2026

A new report from the Linux Foundation and Confidential Computing Consortium is predicting widespread adoption of confidential computing.

The confidential computing market is expected to reach $54 billion by 2026, according to a new market study from the Linux Foundation and the Confidential Computing Consortium. 

Conducted by Everest Group, the study claims the confidential computing market is expected to grow at a CAGR of 90%-95% in the best-case scenario, and 40% - 45% even in the worst-case scenario until 2026. The researchers used proprietary datasets, consultations with key market stakeholders and contributions from the members of the Confidential Computing Consortium to compile the study.

Accenture, ANT Group, Arm, Facebook, Google, Huawei, Intel, Microsoft and Red Hat are all members of the Confidential Computing Consortium.

"Confidential computing protects data in use by performing computation in a hardware-based Trusted Execution Environment (TEE)," the researchers explained.

Abhishek Mundra, practice director at Everest Research, said that while the adoption of Confidential Computing is in the relatively nascent stage, the organization's research "reveals growth potential not only for enterprises consuming it, but also for the technology and service providers enabling it."

The study found that industries facing heavy regulation -- like banking, finance, insurance, healthcare, life sciences, public sector and defense -- are most interested in the technology and will "dominate" the rollout. 

The market will be driven by hardware, software and service segments, while adoption in other industries will be driven in part by the increase in privacy regulations and cyberattacks, according to the study.

The researchers predict that multi-party computing and blockchain "will constitute a large share of the market." Stephen Walli, governing board chair of the Confidential Computing Consortium, said that because many enterprises are moving data to the cloud, security needs have been altered "dramatically."

"The needs of protecting and managing sensitive data throughout the life cycle, coupled with industry regulations, and the proliferation of cyber risks, positions Confidential Computing to become a de facto technology for computational security," he said. 

David Greene, head of the CCC's outreach committee and chief revenue officer of Fortanix, said the strongest demand for confidential computing seems to come from banking, financial services, and healthcare, all of which have huge quantities of very confidential information and a real need to safely use that data.

"Customers want to leverage all of their data, even their most sensitive data, for their own use and to collaborate with other businesses. This is data that can bring advancements in critical research and the development of new solutions for health, productivity and improving people's lives. Organizations in any industry can benefit from keeping their data secure whether it is at rest, in motion or in use," Greene said. 

"We continue to see data breaches resulting from gaps in infrastructure security. It's very hard to protect infrastructure -- there are just too many points of vulnerability. Confidential Computing takes a different approach by focusing on protecting the data, even when it is in use. This just is not possible using any other technology."