Settling into the year of transformational business growth, industry experts predict the future trends of software-defined WAN and SASE
Last year, this month, the US had declared a National Emergency. The pandemic hit the world at an alarming speed. Today, businesses worldwide are rebounding from its after-effects. Several companies are looking ahead in terms of steady technological investments as a way to meet business challenges and turn them into competitive differentiators. The most sought-after technology has been the network.
In Wide Area Network (WAN), also called the Network Edge, there have been multiple advancements, including insights into automation and AI. The transformation of WAN has been a favorite long-term investment among enterprises. Experts believe there are several networking trends that the industry can expect in the near future.
Enterprises will look for a software-defined WAN to successfully navigate from legacy data centers and perimeter security architecture to a cloud SASE architecture. This is an essential strategy for global leaders who have been plummeted into the cloud due to the rapid digital transformation that hit the global industry. Therefore, navigating towards SASE will offer brands better customer experience and address any challenges that they face with the IoT initiatives as well.
With IoT snowballing into business strategies, new security challenges have been causing concern. To contain the security threats and keep threat actors at bay, enterprise leaders will look towards a zero-trust framework. It will limit IoT devices to only their required capability. Although there are endpoint agents that can provide zero trust access, it cannot be installed in IoT devices like printers, cameras, and sensors. By implementing granular segmentation, the new WAN edge will enforce security policies for specific IoT endpoints. It will be able to provide embedded security capabilities making IoT devices less questionable.
While it is clear that network segmentation is critical to contain security breaches, the significant uptick in the adoption of finer-grained segmentation will reduce the need for virtual LANs. Virtual LANs were used to separate guest Wi-Fi traffic from business traffic and other traffics. With the new requirement by IoT devices, the granular segmentation is expected to extend across the WAN by software-defined WAN. Organizations will realize the full capabilities of an edge-to-edge dynamic segmentation.
Experts believe that software-defined WAN edge is actually business-driven. As a top-down strategy, it aligns network resources to the changing requirements and visions of businesses. With AI and automation, threat analysis and automated diagnostics will further strengthen the network making it resilient to chaos in the ever-spiraling cyber threat environment. As a result, network engineers will become more confident to let the network take the reins of security.
In 2021, the software-defined silos will form software-defined enterprise architecture. Acknowledging the benefits, businesses are already in their early stages of uniting software-defined LAN and software-defined WAN under one framework. With the help of security segmentation extended from the LAN to the WAN and into the cloud, enterprises will succeed in meeting the new business standards with efficiency and agility.