The popularity of software-defined wide area network (SD-WAN) technology continues to grow as businesses seek better mobility and connectivity. But these proposals also require security that only MSPs can profitably offer for a segment such as SMEs.
As more businesses seek to optimize their connectivity and business continuity costs on WAN networks, the demand for disruptive and cost-effective solutions grows. The software-defined wide area network (SD-WAN) market is a clear example of this growth, which, according to IDC data, will exceed $ 4.5 billion in 2022.
Based on the fact of the important evolution that the cloud and SaaS applications are experiencing, especially in SMEs to improve mobility, agility, and business productivity, it is leading to not only focusing on the infrastructure or the storage but also on connectivity and communications.
Security Strategies For SD-WAN Solutions:
Digital transformation is about much more than moving workflows to the cloud and embracing the Internet of Things (IoT). It’s about reorganizing the entire network to make it faster, more efficient, much more flexible, and cost-effective. This means it also includes incorporating agile software and application development, rethinking access and integration, and creating dynamic and adaptable network environments.
The priority of many organizations is the adoption of SD-WAN, which extends the benefits of digital transformation to different locations. It gives them instant access to distributed resources, whether they are located in a central data center, in a multi-cloud deployment, or elsewhere through the connected network. And it does so without the rigid implementation requirements and expensive overhead of traditional MPLS connections.
The issue is that SD-WAN is often implemented with only a cursory concern for security. SD-WAN projects tend to be network team-driven and many organizations are so excited about the cost-saving benefits that they completely forget about security. Currently, there are more than 60 vendors that offer SD-WAN solutions and almost all of them only support Internet Protocol Security (IPsec) Virtual Private Networks (VPN), providing security not enough to protect against evolving cyber-attacks. As a result, organizations have to add additional layers of effective security after their SD-WAN solution has already been deployed.
To meet this challenge, here are three security strategies that should be part of any SD-WAN solution:
1. Insist on native next-generation firewall protection: To get started, organizations should choose an SD-WAN solution with built-in NGFW security. This advanced security enables consistent inspection, detection, and protection across the entire SD-WAN, from branch offices and cloud to core, as an integrated feature. It also enables protection to natively follow workflows, data, and applications, even as the SD-WAN network changes and adapts to the demands of the network, a feature that most legacy security solutions strive to comply with. Of course, not all security solutions are created equal, so it is even better if a third party has verified that the security of the integrated firewall solutions has been verified.
2. Integration is essential: Another challenge is that companies do not want to implement an isolated security solution. The fractured visibility and device-by-device policy organization simply add more complexity to the already complicated challenge of protecting today’s distributed digital networks. Therefore, the next thing to verify is that the security strategy chosen for the SD-WAN deployment can be easily and seamlessly integrated into the existing security architecture. Choosing a solution that works as part of a broader security fabric gives your organization a stronger security posture by providing transparent views of network security, centralized management controls, and intelligence sharing and correlation threats.
3. Encrypted traffic must be inspected: As SSL (HTTPS) traffic increases, attackers hide malware within encrypted tunnels to evade detection. Unfortunately, most SD-WAN providers that only offer basic security do not provide SSL inspection or if they do, it is highly inappropriate. This is the most common mistake we see when companies implement SD-WAN.
Even if IT teams succeed in leveraging security in their SD-WAN implementation, SSL inspection cripples the performance of nearly all legacy NGFW (Next-Generation Firewall) solutions on the market. This is why it is essential that in addition to scalable VPN connectivity, you also carefully review the figures related to SSL inspection provided by third-party test labs to ensure you select a solution that meets your performance and security requirements.
Infinity Labs India, a leading provider of technology and network solutions, recently launched InfiNxt – The Next Generation Secure SD WAN, a leading software-defined wide area network solution with an inbuilt next-generation firewall (NGFW). Learn more about InfiNxt – The Next Generation Secure SD WAN.