Blog · 15 Jan 2021

Why it’s time your business got SASE

Craig Connors from partner VMware explains why to truly deliver on the promise of the network-as-a-service, you need the security to match.

We’ve all been that kid – the one that just can’t contain themselves on their birthday, and needs to rip open the next present.

We’ve only just taken the paper off a shiny new bike, with a bell and gears and reflectors… but there’s another gift waiting in the corner. And all we want to do is open it right up.

Well, at the risk of being that kid… I know everyone is admiring SD-WAN right now, and rightly so. But I want to go further, and show you the shiny ribbon-encased present that’s waiting for you in the corner: Secure Access Service Edge (SASE).

Delivering security-as-a-service

SD-WAN is the kind of network that every cloud-first global organisation needs in order to do business today. It’s the network-as-a-service, with end users as the focus. SD-WAN is perfect for distributed working: flexible, agile, and able to evolve at speed and at scale to cope with a complex backdrop of changing business models and customer needs.

But to truly deliver on the promise of the network-as-a-service, you need security to match. In a cloud-based world, where users, devices, data, and applications can quite literally be anywhere, that means a policy-based cohesive security fabric: one that covers all entry points; constantly safeguards against all threats; easily scales up to cope with new users and locations; and allows authorised users to safely access what they need, whenever they need it.

This is what SASE is all about.

Looking beyond the edge

Let’s look at an example.

Imagine John wants to access a SaaS application (such as Marketo or Workday) for work, from his work tablet while travelling and using public Wi-Fi. Immediately, this presents a variety of issues. Where is he located? What’s the risk/trust assessment of his device? How sensitive is the data he’s trying to access? Even the time of day is significant. (Is it outside of work hours?) All of these issues must be accurately assessed in order to ensure that John and his device can be authenticated effectively. Not only that, but they must be regularly tested during the session, to ensure they still hold true.

Through traditional, more piecemeal approaches to security this is challenging to achieve, but through policy-based SASE, it’s done in seconds. Essentially, SASE seamlessly brings security functions to wherever they’re needed: users, devices, branches, applications, services… anything that requires authentication and resides beyond the edge.

Eyes on the shiny new prize

If we allow our eyes to be drawn to that gift in the corner, then, and to rip off the wrapping paper, we’ll find that SASE is to SD-WAN what a helmet is to a brand-new bike. It’s an essential piece of kit that you use everywhere you go, and which helps you move around safely, quickly… providing peace of mind that you’re always protected.

Gartner believe that SASE is the future of security for SD-WAN technology. And we agree. We think that conversations around SD-WAN will evolve to become SASE conversations as standard. That’s why we’ve developed our entirely cloud-native VMware SASE Platform™ and are partnering with BT to deliver the benefits of SASE and the promise of the cloud in one single managed service package.

“SASE provides a great opportunity to get true security at the edge. By creating a powerful ecosystem, combining VMware capability with BT’s security expertise and extending that out through our partnerships with leading security providers, we can deliver the benefits of SASE to our customers.” Anne-Gaelle Santos, Senior Manager, SD-WAN Services, BT.

Get in touch to discover what the VMware SASE Platform could do to protect your organisation.