Security service edge – modern alternative to traditional network security technologies
Security service edge (SSE) is a relatively new term used to describe a set of integrated, cloud-delivered security services that broker secure connections between authorised users and business resources by using identity and policy. First introduced by Gartner in 2021, SSE represents the future of security connectivity.
As more users work outside the corporate perimeter due to hybrid work, adoption of SaaS apps (ie, M365, Salesforce, Box, etc) increases, and private applications move to public cloud, IT leaders have realised that it no longer makes sense to backhaul user traffic to a corporate network. Because of this, many IT leaders are looking to replace traditional network security appliances (ie, firewalls, VPN gateway appliances, web gateway appliances, etc) to better protect data, deliver a better experience and reduce costs for the business.
SSE platforms are the modern alternative to traditional network security technologies. They extend secure connectivity out to the user’s location through cloud services – without connecting users to the corporate network, exposing applications or IT infrastructure to the internet, or requiring complex network segmentation. Instead, a security service edge (SSE) platform allows IT to provide end-users with secure access to private applications from anywhere, safely access the internet and quickly access SaaS apps used for work. SSE services that include digital experience monitoring (DEM) can even boost user productivity by making it easier for network operations managers to monitor application, device and network performance.
Companies looking to securely enable a modern workplace should begin first by deploying an SSE platform. Once SSE is deployed, they can either decide to continue to invest in network optimisation or embrace more of an ‘internet-only’ model. This will allow them to make smarter decisions on whether technologies, like SD-WAN, are important to their business mission, or not.
Five tips for selecting the right SSE platform:
- Avoid using multiple vendors for SSE.
- Prioritise SSE platforms that are fully cloud-delivered vs hardware-based.
- Select vendors that make policy management simple.
- Choose an SSE platform that offers ZTNA with inspection.
- Look for an SSE platform that includes DEM.
According to Andre Kannemeyer, CTO at Duxbury Networking: “SSE allows greater security related to such challenges as remote work and hybrid environments. Nowadays, more businesses are adopting various third-party cloud-hosted applications. Therefore, regular perimeter defence security solutions don’t really fit the case here. SSE is much more capable of protecting your network security and your company’s data. It’s the next chapter of cyber security.
SSE brings several benefits to the business, including:
- Protecting business data using a zero-trust architecture that combines identity, policy and context to securely connect business users to key business apps.
- Delivering a better experience to end-users by extending security services to the edge (the user location and their device) via a cloud architecture.
- Providing deeper security controls through deep visibility at the user and application level.
- Enabling key business initiatives by securely connecting the business ecosystem with private data.
- Reducing IT spend because SSE services that are fully cloud-delivered helps IT avoid renewing contracts for disparate network security services.
Since its formation in 1984 by CEO, Graham Duxbury, Duxbury Networking has embraced ongoing technological changes within the ICT sector in order to provide its customers with access to the latest trends and solutions. Satisfying the evolving and diverse needs of its customer base is achieved through an emphasis on sourcing cost-effective, high-quality products from carefully selected local and international vendors. Aligned with this is the provision of uncompromising technical support, which is possible due to an extensive investment in the training and upskilling of its team. The company is driven to take an active role in reshaping and redefining the South African digital landscape in its mission to help its customers build a network that will support current and future technologies.