The past decade has seen a major transformation in the realm of enterprise network and security. The traditional data center approach no longer fits the changing landscape that we are in today. With cloud-based security solutions and with the pandemic elevating the need to work and access devices and applications virtually, the need for enterprise network security to become more agile and adapt accordingly has become more important than ever.
According to Flexera’s 2021 State of the Cloud report, for the 5th year in a row, optimizing cloud is the top initiative for the year ahead, with migrating more workloads to the cloud a close second.
This is a mandatory shift to address a common challenge emerging in today’s marketplace: how to cost-effectively manage the myriad of devices, users and SaaS applications being accessed from anywhere and from any device, without adding complexity, sacrificing performance, and ensuring users are secured and protected from external threats.
Furthermore, users that operate out of remote and branch offices require the same level of network performance, stability and security as those based out of headquartered locations.
The answer to this challenge lies with Secure Access Service Edge – better known as SASE – a cloud-based model that bridges the gap between SD-WAN and security.
The term SASE was originally coined in 2019 by two Gartner analysts in the report Market Trends: How to Win as WAN Edge and Security Converge Into the Secure Access Service Edge
SASE technology can help secure the cloud, data center, and branch network edges to deliver a secure SD-WAN fabric across diverse connections. (See diagram below).
Source: Lawrence Miller, CISSP (2020) Secure Access Service Edge (SASE) For Dummies®, Cisco Special Edition, John Wiley & Sons Inc.
Why SASE is the Future of Cloud Security
It Simplifies Network Security
As stated before, with data growing and evolving beyond the traditional infrastructure models and into various cloud and SaaS-based applications, many organizations are forced to implement additional services to fill the gaps in security and resources which are already stretched thin. According to Gartner, “SASE combines comprehensive WAN capabilities with network security functions to support dynamic enterprises.”
What does this mean and how does it work?
SASE brings a modern, decentralized solution to this challenge. While traditional methods focus on creating barriers around applications, SASE is geared towards breaking down those silos and providing secure application access directly to the end user. This decentralized approach offers greater workload optimization and performance to remote and branch locations mitigating the added cost and complexity associated with taking a more centralized approach. As a cloud service, SASE uses intel from an organization’s pre-defined rules and dynamically, in real time, allows or rejects connectivity to the service. This is all done through a single, unified platform that amalgamates several functions previously operating independently.*
Security is More Fluid and Accessible
SASE’s cloud-based agility allows it to address the unique and modern challenges associated with users and applications being so spread out. It addresses the current-day challenges brought about by the pandemic where users are working and connecting to devices and applications from virtually anywhere.
Overall, SASE is the next 'big thing' in optimized network security as we move even further towards a cloud-centric world. It opens up new doors for even greater user experience, and lower latency, resulting in greater performance and productivity for all users.
To learn more about adopting SASE technology, please feel free to reach out to Sentia to have an exploratory conversation.
*Zscaler, The Top 3 Benefits of SASE and How to Achieve Them (2019)