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As you shift more of your business data, workloads, applications, and operations to the cloud, you need a highly flexible security framework to better protect your hybrid network infrastructure while improving performance. Secure Access Service Edge AKA SASE and pronounced “Sassy” helps in simplifying your network architecture by converging both networking and security services into a single-service cloud-native, global network that shifts the security focus from traffic flow-centric to identity-centric. It provides more visibility into and greater control over your network security configurations by eliminating the need for legacy hardware firewalls, VPNs, and Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) protection appliances.

In its '2020 Secure Access Service Edge Forecast,' Gartner said, “SASE enables companies to operate during times of disruption and provides highly secure, high-performance access to any application, regardless of user location.”

The three ‘S’s of SASE:

Simplicity — Combine services

Security — Protect, anywhere and everywhere

Scalability — Effectively meet the ever-evolving network and security needs

SASE Convergence

Source: Gartner “The Future of Network Security Is in the Cloud”

How Does SASE Future-proof your Cloud Network?

SASE enables your security team to deliver first-rate network security services in a steady and integrated manner to better support the needs of digital business transformation, hybrid workforce, and edge computing. The adoption of SASE helps your business in many ways including:

  • Enables Zero Trust Access

In the Zero Trust networking approach, the network access is given based on the user's identity, the device, and the application used - not based on the IP address or device location. This helps greatly in simplifying policy management. SASE protects the entity’s session effectively and consistently on and off your enterprise network. It also offers end-to-end encryption of the whole session and optional Web Application & API Protection (WAAP) services.

  • Enhances Information Security

Any access session can be seamlessly inspected if your SASE solution supports content inspection (identification of sensitive information and malware). For instance, scanning for sensitive information on Facebook, Salesforce, and other cloud-hosted applications using a uniform policy that is applied consistently regardless of the user's and device's location.

  • Enables Centralized Management via Distributed Architecture

SASE relies on a disseminated network architecture with a centralized management system that helps improve efficiencies. In such types of architectures, endpoints and branches connect to a  cloud instance that implements the security mechanisms. A cloud-based SASE architecture can be more resilient when challenged with denial-of-service attacks.

  • Improves in Performance/Latency

Modern network solutions like Network as a Service (NaaS) overlay platforms are built to enable latency-optimized routing across worldwide points of presence. This is critical to implement a successful SASE framework especially for latency-sensitive apps used for meetings, web conferencing collaboration, video, and VoIP.

  • Enables New Digital Business Scenarios

SASE enables you to make your services, applications, APIs, and data securely accessible to authorized contractors and partners without exposing your legacy virtual private network (VPN) and legacy demilitarized zone (DMZ) architectures to security risks.

  • Increases Productivity and Effectiveness of Network Security Staff

SASE enables your network and network security team to be more productive and accurate in their jobs. Instead of getting consumed in their routine tasks of setting up infrastructure, your network security staff can focus on understanding business, administrative, and application access requirements and mapping them to SASE capabilities.

  • Reduces WAN Costs and Complexity

You can control WAN costs by eliminating the need for expensive MPLS and leased circuits and eliminated problematic VPN connectivity. A cloud-based Network as a service implementation can further optimize your traffic flows by seamlessly connecting with major SaaS vendors through cloud connectivity.

Wrap Up

Hit by the current pandemic, more and more businesses are going hybrid and moving their data and applications to the cloud. Today, more employees are working remotely than ever before and data is being accessed from various locations and devices. This urges for a highly secure and flexible yet scalable network infrastructure which can only be achieved through SASE. Around 64% of organizations across the globe are adopting or plan to adopt SASE in the next year. Where do you stand? Combine your business silos into one centrally managed, cloud orchestrated framework with Pyramid Consulting SASE services.

Nick Saunders

About the author

Nick Saunders

Nick currently serves as part of the leadership team at Pyramid Consulting where he is responsible for developing the company's overall GTM product, commercial and corporate strategy for IoT, Network, and Unified Communications & Collaboration (UCC) Solutions.

Nick has 20+ years of functional and leadership experience in transformational, high growth environments, ranging from start-ups to large cap public companies, spanning the entire communications technology ecosystem including UCC, cloud, data, networking, mobility, AI, and IoT.

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