Organizations today require immediate, secure and uninterrupted access to critical network and cloud-based resources. One of the frameworks businesses are implementing to deliver protected networking and security services anywhere, anytime is SASE, pronounced “sassy”. We sat down with our Vice President of Product Management, Mike Frane, to learn more about what SASE is, why it matters and what questions organizations should be asking.
Mike: SASE is more than a single technology. It’s a fabric of intertwined network and security technologies that together protect an organization’s data and systems from unwanted access. The architecture interlaces into an ecosystem of “Network as a Service” and “Network Security as a Service,” resulting in a unified connectivity framework that is ubiquitously available anywhere and anytime.
Mike: In order to fully understand what’s driving its adoption, we need to first look back. Within the last decade, there was a wave of organizations planning and executing new digital transformation strategies. Most of these strategies incorporated increasing public cloud investments and building their new applications as cloud-native apps (although security budgets were distributed between existing on-premises infrastructure and cloud). More recent disruptions have seriously impacted organizations and entire supply chains around the world, including the rise in “work from anywhere” demands and the need for additional cloud-based security.
According to Gartner, “over the next five years, the market for secure access service edge will grow at a CAGR of 42%, reaching almost $11 billion by 2024.”1 As networking and security becomes increasingly more complex within this new environment, organizations are turning to technologies like SD-WAN and now SASE to enable speedier and more agile digital business transformations and workforce mobility.
Mike: From our perspective, the core components of a SASE framework include Software-Defined Wide-Area Networking (SD-WAN), Firewall as a Service (FWaaS), Secure Web Gateways (SWG), Zero Trust Network Access (ZTNA) and Cloud Access Security Broker (CASB).
Mike: SASE solves two fundamental problems in the current technology stack: visibility and control. Most of the technology and products that we use today were built to extend our visibility so we will be in a position to control. Now imagine if we had total visibility and control within a single platform. SASE’s cloud-first architecture is uniquely positioned to intercept, inspect, secure and optimize all traffic.
Mike: SASE offers simplified security deployment, increased security and appropriate bandwidth allocation. Because it’s a cloud service, SASE is scalable by design, making it a viable and welcome option during rapidly changing times. The combined capabilities provided by SASE simplify the otherwise complex architecture that would result from a vast collection of point security and networking solutions. This reduces complexity, improves performance and can also lower latency.
Other benefits include device consolidation and lower operational overhead. Because SASE providers run and maintain the security engines, IT is freed from the constant updating, patching and scaling of appliances.
Mike: SASE brings several benefits to organizations including simplified security deployment, increased security and along with SD-WAN appropriate bandwidth allocation on a per-application basis. Because it’s a cloud service, SASE is scalable by design, making it a viable and welcome option during rapidly changing times. The combined capabilities provided by SASE simplify the otherwise complex architecture that would result from a vast collection of point security and networking solutions. This reduces complexity, improves performance and can also lower latency.
Mike: Here are some use cases enterprises should consider:
Mike: Here are some questions you should be asking during your search:
Read our whitepaper with VMware to learn more about the emergence of SASE, how it enables secure network access capabilities and how, when delivered with SD-WAN, it offers organizations the most flexible and reliable security in the cloud.
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