Like almost every technology innovation ever, for every problem it solves, it trails another along in its wake. Take SD-WAN. It’s a popular choice for those looking for MPLS-level Quality of Service at a lower price point and far easier scalability. At the top end of the market, buyers can lock in the additional benefits of zero-touch provisioning, accelerating deployment and doing away with the need for network or security experts to be on-site.
Why a basic approach to SD-WAN security isn’t enough
The thing is, both networks and security teams still need to be involved, and therein lies the problem. In a typical scenario, each team will do their respective bit: the networking team deploys the SD-WAN solution, the security team deploys a next-generation firewall (NGFW) to protect the SD-WAN-enabled appliance. With the doubling up of effort and product, that can impact negatively on Total Cost of Ownership (TCO).
More importantly, there’s a potential lack of integration, and without fully integrated security, you’re looking at a connectivity option that is also another attack vector. In addition, you risk performance issues: many NGFWs will struggle in the face of checking an increased level of SSL-encrypted enterprise traffic for malware.
What is a secure SD-WAN solution?
The problems that SD-WAN inadvertently introduced are the problems that secure SD-WAN was developed to solve. As its name suggests, it has security built-in. It combines both network and security features in a natively integrated platform: SD-WAN, next-generation firewall, IPS, encryption, AV, advanced routing, WAN optimisation, sandboxing, all incorporated in the one solution to fully protect the WAN edge.
It’s a timely solution. With networks becoming more distributed as remote working grows, there’s real pressure to deliver trusted, performant connectivity to support ‘anywhere, anytime’ working. Secure SD-WAN can also be placed in branch or the cloud, all managed from a single console. Orchestration of secure WAN deployment has never been simpler, more efficient or more cost-effective.
Why do organisations need a secure SD-WAN?
Costs, limitations, risk…We’ve already discussed why a basic approach won’t suffice. Each organisation will have its own priorities and imperatives and therefore look at secure SD-WAN’s benefits through a different lens. But you know that everyone has to have ’boosting security’ towards the top of their list. No-one is immune to deliberate attack or an unfortunate mistake, and here’s a solution that can help prevent data loss and downtime and guard against regulatory compliance issues. The fact that it can do this while also improving network speed, lowering TCO and transforming deployment dynamics at a time of massive flux for WANs is turning secure SD-WAN into that classic ‘no-brainer’.