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Symantec Knows Security Continues to Evolve: The Need for Data-Centric SASE

Protecting data is not just a priority, it’s the whole point of security

Cyber security has never been more important and visible than today.  Daily occurrences of breaches and attacks, combined with the open debate of how to ensure infrastructure and data stay protected- have made this issue visible to everyone, not just the CISO or IT professionals.

Symantec, as a division of Broadcom, has been stressing the importance of a Secure Access Service Edge (SASE) solution as a key component of an enterprise’s comprehensive security approach. SASE is a vision of converged technologies to improve network performance and security for users who can be anywhere, use any device, and need access to content and applications from corporate data centers and cloud platforms.  Or simply put: single-pass security pushed to the end user.

Symantec has been stressing the importance of a Secure Access Service Edge (SASE) solution as a key component of an enterprise’s comprehensive security approach.

As we have all seen, the world of security continues to change and with it the needs of the enterprise.  Digital transformation, cloud computing, workforce mobility, and the wholesale adoption of consumer/digital devices has created a world where there are far more devices, applications, data, and users outside enterprises and their data centers than now exist inside.

With these changes comes a new vision for network security called secure access service edge (SASE). And more specifically, to Data-Centric SASE.

A Security Model for the Modern Enterprise

Data-Centric SASE is a new and comprehensive architecture for reimagining and reinventing network security based on the principles of the Zero Trust philosophy of trust no one or nothing.

Symantec recognizes that solving today’s most important security problems requires tight integration of capabilities that cross traditional product boundaries, such as delivered through a SASE architecture approach. Challenges across network, data, threat protection and secure access.

The SASE approach reflects the realities of the modern digital enterprise. Instead of the current “security theater” approach that relies on a perimeter defense model, SASE solves for the new vectors of security. It provides an architecture and a roadmap for protecting the organization’s crown jewels, the data – regardless of where it’s located.

SASE doesn't do it well if the new, single-pass cloud solution has inferior products stitched together. First, the ideal SASE solution needs to adhere to the philosophy of Zero Trust and protect data wherever it is. Secondly, the ideal SASE solution will adapt to business realities. For many, moving off of hardware overnight is an unreal (even foolish) goal. A hybrid-enabled approach to SASE let's customers move to the cloud at a pace that is both secure and practical.  And finally???

Why Data-Centric SASE?

Central to the SASE concept is the need to secure data in a world where everything is data and data is everything. Ultimately, what that means is that the objective of SASE is to reduce the attack surface by creating a software-defined perimeter – as opposed to a network perimeter – around everything and anything data-related. SASE is a data-centric approach to controlling and securing that enterprise data wherever and whatever it is.

Zero Trust is the bedrock principle behind and essential to achieving SASE. Organizations cannot abandon the philosophy of Zero Trust and still embrace SASE. More to the point, it is not enough to just “check off boxes” for a list of SASE critical capabilities.

Organizations cannot abandon the philosophy of Zero Trust and still embrace SASE.

Crucial to creating a genuine SASE architecture is putting all the components in place to ensure security inbound from unmanaged devices and outbound to web and private access applications. That means implementing such components of the overall SASE architecture as data loss protection (DLP), cloud access secure broker (CASB), and Zero Trust network access (ZTNA). In some ways, SASE can be looked on as both extensions and evolutions of each of these security solutions and methodologies.

It is almost a given that the journey to SASE is easier and most cost-efficient if the organization’s SASE vendor or partners can provide the data security expertise and the comprehensive, best-in-class solutions for each of these critical components of the SASE architecture. A hybrid solution, such as that offered by Symantec Web Protection Suite, integrates many of these critical components while allowing organizations to plot their journey to SASE at the pace that’s right for their business.

Security, SASE, and the User Experience (UX)

More than ever, enterprises today also need to take into account the business productivity and need for transparency to the user. Prior to cloud adoption and digital transformation, the enterprise controlled the user experience. That’s just not true anymore. Users now have vastly different performance expectations. Tools and applications such as Box and Google need to be built into the workflow and accounted for in enterprise security planning and policy-setting.

Security is no longer operating in a silo, if it ever was. But now the user experience is just as important to the security plan. If the security solution degrades the user experience, that hinders productivity. Simply put, no one wants six different logins, and no security operations center (SOC) wants a stack of alerts as users attempt to use the tools they consider necessary to do their work. One of the great advantages of a data-centric SASE is that it will enable that flexibility and transparency as the security architecture is baked into the IT environment.

In an enterprise security world turned inside-out and inverted priorities, the bottom line is that a data-centric SASE is necessary to protect your organization, its people, and most important, the crown jewels of the enterprise, its data. The time to begin that journey is now.

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About the Author

Tim Murphy

Head of Product Marketing, Symantec Enterprise Division

Tim leads Product Marketing for Symantec Enterprise Division. He specializes in cloud-delivered Secure Web Gateway, Intelligence Services, Privacy & Compliance, Encrypted Traffic Management and Network Performance Testing.

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