Security needs to be as agile as today’s workforce, offering constant protection and a great user experience no matter where the user or device is. Cybercriminals will always exploit security vulnerabilities and blind spots created by disparate technologies with different configuration and administration consoles bolted together with workarounds.
Adding more technologies to an already overburdened security environment is frequently the approach taken today to securing expanding networks. With enterprises already struggling to handle a plethora of security tools, and each incident necessitating co-ordination across several devices, adding additional technology to the mix could be the final straw.
Remote work is the most recent example of the network’s attack surface rapidly expanding. Employees should be able to move effortlessly between the corporate office, and their remote locations, which is one of the most significant security challenges of a hybrid workforce. Applications, whether in the data centre, the cloud, or SaaS, should not only be accessible from any place, but also provide a consistent user experience and security. Security solutions and policies should follow users and data from one location to the next. At any level, achieving interoperability, let alone smoothly handing off policies, providing consistent enforcement end to end, and correlating threat information can be tough.
Working from anywhere poses new security risks
Employees needed to access crucial corporate resources from their typically under-secured remote networks when the pandemic struck. While VPN was widely utilized, access controls were frequently insufficient, allowing any device, user, or application to access corporate resources via the VPN connection. And, as a result of the vulnerability of endpoint devices and remote networks, there has been an extraordinary rise in cyber incidents.
Since those employees will now be travelling back and forth across work environments, maintaining consistent security is considerably more difficult because solutions from different providers don’t often function well. Worse, the majority of these tools were never intended for this level of interoperability in the first place.
Keeping the Work-from-Anywhere environment secure
Enterprises need a “work-from-anywhere” security strategy, in which solutions can track and secure data, users, and applications from end-to-end. That implies endpoint security should work in tandem with network and cloud access controls. Secure SASE and SD-WAN solutions needs to integrate with edge security and networking solutions to ensure that security does not end at the edge of data centre, campus, branch, or cloud.
Zero-trust policies should be continuously supported and enforced across the board by access policy engines. Furthermore, policy and threat intelligence must be applied across the whole network, ensuring constant protection and enforcement even as the network adapts to changing workloads and business requirements.
It’s challenging, though, to create such a unified and dependable system with clear visibility and consistent control. IT teams are compelled to use complex workarounds to connect systems that aren’t designed to work together natively. However, maintaining and resolving such workarounds consumes a substantial amount of IT resources. Even minor product updates can become a logistical nightmare in such an atmosphere.
The three main WFA use cases can be addressed by a unified cybersecurity mesh platform
The first stage is to choose a cybersecurity mesh platform and develop a strategy for consolidating as many of independent security solutions as feasible into a unified set of endpoint, connectivity, zero trust, cloud, and network security solutions. Whether deployed directly on a security mesh platform or interoperating with it via purpose-built clients and APIs, these tools should be designed to work as a cohesive system. This unified platform approach streamlines policy generation and enforcement, ensures consistent configurations, centralizes management, and allows for end-to-end monitoring and control of devices, users, data, workflows and applications.
Enterprise-grade protections can track users and devices in the remote office, the corporate office or even on the road to maintain productivity and security across the extended network, thanks to fully integrated security, services, and threat intelligence platforms that can be deployed in any form factor, anywhere.
A unified platform strategy like this can be applied to almost every use case, including the three most frequent WFA situations today: corporate offices, remote offices, and mobile workers.
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