Blog · 17 Sep 2021

How SASE will secure your expanding network

It’s increasingly clear that all organisations using SD-WAN to deliver cloud-based services will need edge-to-edge security.

EMEA Director for Service Provider and Enterprise, VMware

It’s likely you’ve been hearing a lot about the term Secure Access Service Edge (SASE) over the last year or so.

Originally coined by Gartner back in 2019, it’s become a widely used phrase to describe a type of networking architecture, that’s combining SD-WAN and cloud-native security tools to deliver protected network access to the source or ’edge’ of each connection.

SASE has huge potential, tackling the security challenges that come with opening up the traditional network perimeter with cloud and internet based technologies like SD-WAN. But it’s not a new concept, just a new way at looking for the answers.

It’s important to secure hybrid working

As much as everyone was talking about working from home a few months back, the conversation has now shifted to hybrid working or ‘working from anywhere’. We’re now seeing and expecting many workforces to adopt new, mixed working patterns. Splitting their time between the office, home and on the move. To make each connection experience successful, cloud adoption is essential, enabling companies to embrace mobility and connect employees to their critical applications and remote data wherever they are with shared or public connections.

But this shift towards a more flexible workforce means many employees will be operating beyond the reach or visibility of their organisations’ security architecture. This increases the risk of exposure to a host of new and unknown threats, which is why it’s so important they take a Zero Trust approach to the cloud and ensure access from any location or device is verified and secured.

At its core that’s what SASE brings to the table. It offers the ability to enforce a consistent security policy across every edge of your expanding network, helping you authenticate and monitor every end user wherever they are, making sure every session is completely secure and your sensitive data remains where you want it. And, while many of our customers are still relatively early on their transformation journey to SASE, it’s increasingly clear that all organisations using SD-WAN to deliver cloud-based services will need this level of protection. 

Why bring network and security together?

Successful delivery of SASE will require you to change the way you think about the relationship between your network and security departments. Many organisations still treat them as separate towers but, with SASE, the technology converges, and so does the service wrap. And that provides the ability to unlock value for your business.

By bringing remote access security, policy management, threat prevention and full content inspection into one place, you get accurate visibility and control of these elements from a single source and dashboard. And the value to you means you experience reduced operational costs with the ability to diagnose and resolve network and security issues and problems much faster. It seems clear, that keeping ahead in business, now means that the convergence of these two departments is inescapable.

Consider your SASE position and journey

We know how important protecting your data has become, using SASE will help organisations bring together holistic security solutions to safeguard their futures in the cloud. Joining up and understanding the interaction between different security elements will become easier and taking the services direct from the cloud will mean protection is extended farther and wider and integration is less complex. We’re seeing the emergence of two key routes for SASE delivery in the market. The first is via a single vendor ecosystem integrated with SD-WAN and the other takes a broader approach, offering a blended multi-vendor hybrid stack solution that combines SD-WAN with cloud security.

At VMware, our current SASE focus is to create a single vendor ecosystem, and we’re working with BT to launch a managed SASE solution very soon. This will converge cloud networking and cloud security to deliver flexibility, agility, and scale for enterprises of all sizes and geographies. And by combining VMware technology and BT expertise, we’ll be able to support you fully on your security aims and your journey towards a managed end-to-end SASE solution. But don’t worry if you’re not looking for this approach, BT also offers organisations choice with a hybrid-stack managed SASE solution.

Find out more about our managed SASE solution.