How to Think About Security at the Edge


How to Think About Security at the Edge

Jul 28, 2021

Security isn’t new. But as enterprises increasingly adopt cloud services, the concept of security in the cloud brings with it some strategies, techniques and challenges that are new to the security discussion.

Getting started in cloud security

Developing an effective cloud security framework begins with your cloud security posture. Your organization almost certainly already has a security posture, but the rapid adoption of IaaS, SaaS and PaaS services means you’re now dealing with new ways of connecting and your cloud security posture needs to reflect that expanded connectivity.

A strong cloud security posture framework revolves around three principles: evaluate, engage, and extend.

Evaluate: You need a way to evaluate cloud access security broker (CASB) providers. How can you best secure inter-cloud?

Engage: How are you going to engage your cloud operations teams and maintain good cloud security posture awareness?

Extend: How are you going to conduct risk assessments and identify where information is moving from one workload to another cross-cloud, into different or other clouds, and moving back down to the edge?

By following that framework, it becomes possible to better understand cloud security priorities and possibilities, to identify the right solutions in the marketplace to suit your needs and to put a good strategy around your cloud security posture.

Risk mitigation and developing the right internal resources

As with most other facets of modern IT management, there are inherent risks and hazards in the cloud. You need to plan for those risks and stay ahead of them, and that’s where a well-developed risk mitigation strategy becomes critical. Identifying risks, assessing their potential impact and developing a way to mitigate them assures you’ll achieve significantly better outcomes in the cloud.

In addition, you need to approach cloud with an eye toward the process and operations necessary to ensure a secure environment. Developing the right processes and internal talent, plus a partnership with an experienced edge security provider, means you’ll have everything in place to effectively leverage the scalability and power of cloud services. With those components in place, you can then seek out the tools to secure your cloud environment.

Cloud security and the user experience

The conversation around security at the edge also includes preserving the quality of experience in a shifting landscape. End users increasingly are moving throughout the world and transitioning from remote work to onsite connectivity and back again. Many employees probably had visions of working from home previously and now that it’s proven to be feasible, they’ll want the flexibility to do it long term.

Blending robust security, strong performance and a good user experience in the cloud requires some new thinking. It also calls for pushing security out to the edge for best results.

Providers today are developing innovations around SD-WAN services on end user devices and then integrating those with common security tools that enable good identity awareness. Those advancements allow enterprises to have better performance and access to multicloud, along with Zero Trust. Your goal should be to enable your users to hit any cloud from wherever they are, or to connect to a distributed cloud that can give them the best performance while maintaining a very secure environment. With things like Zero Trust to step up and step down encryption based on the workloads users are trying to access, you can deliver a good user experience without sacrificing security.

Wireless technologies will continue to drive mobility and enable people to move around the world. If your business can deliver the right level of performance and security, you’ll be perfectly positioned to leapfrog your competitors and maintain momentum toward your strategic goals.

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