New IT Worlds demand new Cloud-based security concepts

By   ISBuzz Team
Writer , Information Security Buzz | Sep 10, 2013 01:30 am PST

According to Verizon’s 2013 State of the Enterprise Cloud report, the enterprise use of cloud technology grew by 90 percent between Jan 2012 and June 2013. Corporations have moved beyond testing and development and are now more readily running external-facing and critical business applications in the cloud. Zscaler attributes the growing acceptance of the cloud to the fact of changed business environments that are better supported through cloud-based services.

“Mobility & cloud applications such as Gmail, and MS365 are eroding the network perimeter”, says Charles Milton, Director Service Provider EMEA of Zscaler’s Direct-to-Cloud Network (DCN). “Employees are embracing these technologies and bypassing traditional network security devices to connect directly to cloud services. The concept of the Everywhere Enterprise is now a reality.”

The Verizon report concludes that Enterprise cloud has reached a tipping point. “Organisations have seen the benefits the cloud can provide both in efficiency and cost — and are ready to move an increasing number of mission-critical applications to cloud-based infrastructure. However in order for this to happen, cloud service providers must deliver to enterprise-grade availability and security.”

Zscaler sees that the proliferation of mobile and cloud technologies has shifted control away from IT to the user. Adopting a Direct-to-Cloud Network minimises the risk of fully leveraging the cloud, while enabling the productivity benefits provided by mobile and cloud technologies. The Zscaler Direct-to-Cloud Network (DCN) enables enterprises to safely conduct business beyond the corporate network by embracing mobility and cloud trends. The DCN illustrates the evolution away from the traditional hub-and-spoke enterprise network and security model. The appliance-based hub-and-spoke security model worked to connect distributed users to proprietary applications hosted on corporate data centres using MPLS backbone. It made sense in the old centralised IT world.

Milton continues “Business today requires a global presence, but if all of these global users have to communicate with a central hub before connecting to the Internet such a “hub-and-spoke” model is neither efficient nor scalable. Organisations need to embrace a distributed network and security architecture that meets its users in the cloud to enable direct access to their cloud services.”

This is the foundation of the Zscaler Direct-to-Cloud Network, a globally-distributed secure cloud network with more than 100 data centres. Zscaler DCN acts like a check post between the user and the Internet such that all Internet bound traffic goes through it, hence enabling businesses to embrace mobility and cloud while enforcing their business policy.

“We refer to this as going “Direct-to-Cloud” and have developed our Direct-to-Cloud Network explicitly to provide security, visibility and control over these environments whilst maintaining user productivity improving network performance. As users embrace the Direct-to-Cloud mentality, CIOs would be wise not to resist it, but rather to enable these technologies and trends. Implementing a Direct-to-Cloud Network is the logical progression from appliance-based networking and security.”

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