For years enterprises have relied on separate network and point security solutions such as virtual private networks (VPNs) for remote access and firewalls for security.
But with the increasing adoption of cloud computing, IoT, mobile devices, and remote work the networking and security landscape has become increasingly complex.
To ensure data security for cloud-based apps while providing reliable connectivity for hybrid workplaces and remote workers, the modern enterprise needs a more flexible, scalable, and robust solution.
The SASE framework is a transformative approach to network security and connectivity that aligns with these evolving requirements of modern digital enterprises.
In this article, we deep-dive into the key components of SASE, its benefits, why organizations cannot afford to ignore it, and how GTT’s SASE solution, Secure Connect, is helping enterprises bridge the gap between their networks and their cybersecurity strategy.
What is SASE?
SASE, or Secure Access Service Edge, is a framework for a network architecture model that combines network security and software-defined wide-area networking (SD-WAN) capabilities into a single cloud-based service.
The primary aim of SASE is to provide secure and optimized connectivity to network resources, regardless of the user’s location or the location of the resources.
SASE ensures ‘always-on’ security capabilities—irrespective of where your end users are, what device they are using and whether the applications or resources they need to access are on-premises or on private or public cloud.
Users have seamless, secure access to applications and data across on-premises and the cloud. That’s why SASE is a more feasible option to protect distributed workforces using applications and resources from the cloud.
The concept of SASE security has gained significant attention and traction in recent years, driven by the increasing adoption of cloud services, remote work, and the need for robust network security.
A compelling reason for more and more organizations adopting the SASE model is that data center-focused security and network architectures are quickly becoming ineffective—if not irrelevant!
The global SASE market size is projected to grow from USD 1.9 billion in 2023 to USD 5.9 billion by 2028 at a CAGR of 25% during the forecast period.
What Are the Components of SASE Security?
SASE integrates network and security services into a unified cloud-native platform.
Here are the key components commonly found in a SASE security architecture:
Software-defined wide-area networking (SD-WAN)
SD-WAN forms the foundation of a SASE architecture. It leverages software-defined techniques to intelligently route and optimize network traffic across various locations, such as branch offices, data centers, and the cloud, supporting remote users. It improves performance by dynamically selecting the most efficient path for data transmission.
FWaaS provides next-generation firewall functionality from the cloud. It functions as a virtual firewall, elevating your network security. It ensures secure traffic flow between networks, enforces access policies, and monitors and controls network traffic based on predefined rules.
Zero-trust network access (ZTNA)
ZTNA is a highly effective security methodology that validates users and devices on an individual basis, prior to granting (or not) access to resources. It establishes trust based on user identity, device posture, and contextual data. Trust is never assumed, and least-privileged access is granted to reduce the risk of unauthorized access.
Secure web gateways (SWGs)
SWGs provide web security and filtering capabilities, shielding users from malicious websites, malware attacks, and insidious phishing attempts and ensuring a safe browsing experience.
Cloud access security brokers (CASB)
CASBs serve as the guardians of cloud applications and services.
They offer visibility and control over cloud applications and services. So you can enforce stringent security policies, closely monitor user activity, and protect your data as it flows between on-premises infrastructure and the dynamic cloud environment.
Data loss prevention (DLP)
Safeguard your sensitive data, both within and outside your organization. DLP solutions stand as vigilant sentinels, constantly monitoring and controlling data in motion, at rest, and in use, applying policies to prevent unauthorized access or disclosure.
How Does SASE Security Work?
SASE is built on a cloud-native architecture, with SD-WAN as its foundation.
SASE security services are delivered from cloud-based points of presence (PoPs) distributed geographically.
It leverages the scalability, elasticity, and agility of the cloud so organizations can scale their network and security services as needed without the limitations of on-premises infrastructure.
As traffic flows through the SD-WAN infrastructure, SASE security services inspect and analyze the data packets in real-time.
The SASE platform enforces access controls, applies encryption, detects and blocks malicious activities, and ensures compliance with regulatory requirements.
Is your organization in limbo between legacy on-premises networking and the need for new cloud security technologies? Do you struggle to offer the data and network protection that your users deserve and your business needs?
GTT’s SASE framework, Secure Connect, is the result of the convergence of cutting-edge SD-WAN technologies with cloud-based security—available in one comprehensive package.
GTT simplifies the management of your network and security policies, giving your users access to the applications they need while protecting them from ever-increasing cyber threats and network vulnerabilities.
5 Reasons to Implement SASE Security
SASE provides a unified approach to network security that aligns with the demands of modern distributed and cloud-centric environments.
Let’s look at some of the irrefutable benefits of SASE and why it is the ideal network and security model for the modern enterprise:
SASE consolidates multiple network and security functions into a unified cloud-based service, so you don’t need separate hardware appliances at each location. This reduces upfront capital expenditure (CAPEX) and lowers ongoing operational costs (OPEX). In addition, its subscription-based model makes it scalable, and you only pay for the services you use, making SASE incredibly cost-effective.
Its cloud-centric approach means you can easily scale your network and security infrastructure as your needs evolve. In addition, you have the ability to deploy and manage security services across multiple locations as and when you need them. SASE supports remote and hybrid workforces, and its cloud-based delivery ensures that security services are easily accessible from anywhere and on any device.
SASE is at the cutting edge of network and security—by integrating multiple security services, such as SD-WAN, FWaaS, SWGs, ZTNA, and CASB, into a unified platform, it delivers a comprehensive and layered defense strategy against ever-increasing cyber threats. SASE’s real-time traffic inspection, identity-centric access controls, and encryption mechanisms further enhance the network’s security posture.
SASE enables organizations to expand their reach and seamlessly connect globally distributed locations. With its cloud-native architecture and distributed points of presence (PoPs), organizations can extend their network and security services to geographically dispersed locations with optimized performance and low latency. This is particularly valuable for multinational organizations so that they can operate efficiently and securely across different regions and time zones.
Threat risk reduction
SASE plays a crucial role in reducing the risk of cyber threats for organizations with its holistic threat detection, prevention, and response. SASE’s real-time traffic inspection, advanced threat intelligence, and identity-centric access controls empower you to identify and mitigate security threats proactively.
Overall, SASE reduces appliance sprawl and combines network and security into a single solution.
SASE is entirely software-based and cloud-delivered—so it can readily fit into your existing technologies, security stack, or infrastructure.
Moreover, its SaaS-based subscription model makes it easy to buy, manage and operate with a convenient, scalable per-user pricing model.
Finally, SASE gives you end-to-end visibility and analytics of all users, devices, applications, and resources—regardless of location or connection type via private, cloud, or internet—simplifying network and security management.
Seamlessly Integrate SASE Security with GTT
In their report “The Future of Network Security Is in the Cloud,” published in 2019, Gartner predicted that by 2024, at least 40% of enterprises would have explicit strategies to adopt SASE, up from less than 1% at the time.
Sure enough, we have seen a sharp shift in the last few years toward cloud-native applications, with enterprises adopting a cloud-first approach and growing rapidly beyond the conventional network edge. And a majority of these organizations do not have adequate security that keeps pace with their jump onto the cloud.
GTT is at the cutting edge of SASE security technology, meeting the evolving security needs and dynamic access requirements of modern enterprises.
GTT’s Secure Connect provides a layered security approach, detecting and mitigating real-time threats and enforcing consistent security policies across the network.
We offer you next-gen network connectivity and protection from industry-leading partners—all in one comprehensive package.
We securely connect users, systems, and endpoints to applications and services anywhere. That’s how we bridge the gap between your network infrastructure and your cybersecurity strategy.
SASE combines multiple networks, delivering enhanced application performance and best-in-class security technologies into an integrated offering.
With GTT’s Secure Connect, everyone can access the system—no matter where they are or what application they want to access—and it is securely authenticated.
Interested in learning more about GTT’s Secure Connect?
Connect with our experts and ask us for a demo of Secure Connect to gain a firm foothold in the SASE security landscape.