Enterprises are embracing modernisation by migrating their applications and data to the cloud. To attain freedom of choice, cost efficiency, and global coverage, it is increasingly appealing to utilise services from various cloud vendors. However, the challenge lies in consolidating these disparate cloud environments, each with its own tools and intricacies, into a unified fabric that ensures security, enhances user experience through efficient routing, enables uninterrupted access, and simplifies orchestration.
This objective cannot be accomplished by inefficiently redirecting traffic through an on-premises data centre with conventional firewalls and security devices. It is essential for traffic to flow directly from the user to the cloud application, while ensuring optimal access and performance for users, regardless of their location or device. With remote users, roaming users, branch offices, and corporate locations all connecting to multiple clouds, IT departments require cloud-intelligent, cloud-agnostic, dynamic multi-path connectivity, consistent policy enforcement across the ecosystem, and robust security measures.
Transitioning to the cloud presents a distinct challenge. It goes beyond the mere act of migration and encompasses the critical task of safeguarding individual VMs, workloads, and containers from compromise, as well as preventing the lateral spread of threats. Additionally, ensuring seamless disaster recovery in a multi-cloud setting involves efficiently transferring users and applications to alternative cloud locations.
In this blog, we will explore the obstacles presented by a multi-cloud environment and provide insights on streamlining various networking and security tasks for your company. These tasks encompass routing, SD-WAN, carrier-grade NAT, data loss prevention (DLP), zero-trust network access (ZTNA), secure web gateways (SWG), denial-of-service (DOS) protection, IP address management, firewall (FW), intrusion prevention system/intrusion detection system (IPS/IDS), antivirus, ransomware protection, and malware defence. The aim is to consolidate all these functions into a unified and user-friendly interface, offering a comprehensive view for effective management.
The Challenges of a Multi-Cloud Ecosystem
The adoption of multi-cloud environments has brought numerous benefits to organisations, such as increased scalability, flexibility, and cost-efficiency. However, managing a multi-cloud ecosystem also comes with its fair share of challenges. One of the major hurdles is achieving a seamless and secure network across multiple clouds.
A critical aspect of managing a multi-cloud environment is ensuring cloud independence while optimising cross-cloud traffic. Organisations need a comprehensive framework that enables them to implement a secure access service edge (SASE) architecture. This framework should provide consistent policy enforcement at a granular transaction level, regardless of the cloud provider.
Additionally, cross-cloud resilience and application/network convergence are crucial for maintaining operational continuity and minimising downtime. Organisations must navigate complexities such as data synchronisation, interoperability, and consistent user experience across different cloud platforms. Furthermore, managing security across multiple clouds requires a robust strategy that addresses various security concerns, including data privacy, identity and access management, threat detection, and compliance.
Streamlining and Enhancing Multi-Cloud Connectivity
Streamlining various networking and security tasks is crucial for any company to enhance operational efficiency and strengthen its cybersecurity posture. By consolidating these functions into a unified and user-friendly interface, organisations can achieve effective management and gain comprehensive insights.
Routing, SD-WAN, carrier-grade NAT, data loss prevention (DLP), zero-trust network access (ZTNA), secure web gateways (SWG), denial-of-service (DOS) protection, IP address management, firewall (FW), intrusion prevention system/intrusion detection system (IPS/IDS), antivirus, ransomware protection, and malware defence are all vital components of a robust network and security infrastructure. By integrating these functions, organisations can create a centralised platform that offers a holistic view of their networking and security landscape. This unified interface provides administrators with real-time visibility, control, and monitoring capabilities, enabling them to streamline operations and respond swiftly to potential threats or issues.
Hybrid-cloud Use Cases
In the context of several essential hybrid-cloud use cases, such as secure on-premises to cloud migration, multi-cloud smart pipe connectivity, remote workforce protection, micro-segmentation for cloud workload protection, and disaster-recovery-as-a-service (DRaaS), a consolidated interface becomes even more valuable.
For secure on-premise to cloud migration, organisations can leverage the unified interface to ensure seamless connectivity and data integrity during the migration process. The interface provides a comprehensive view of the network, allowing administrators to monitor the traffic flow, apply necessary security measures, and address any potential vulnerabilities.
Multi-cloud smart pipe connectivity can be efficiently managed through the unified interface, offering organisations a consolidated view of their multi-cloud environment. Administrators can establish secure connections, manage traffic routing, and implement consistent security policies across multiple cloud platforms, simplifying the complexity associated with multi-cloud deployments.
Remote workforce protection becomes more manageable through the unified interface by providing visibility into user activities, enforcing zero-trust network access, and implementing secure web gateways. This consolidated approach ensures that remote employees are protected against potential threats and that company data remains secure.
Micro-segmentation for cloud workload protection can be effectively implemented and monitored through the unified interface. Administrators can create and manage micro-segmentation policies, control access privileges, and detect any unauthorised activities, providing enhanced security for cloud workloads. Lastly, disaster-recovery-as-a-service can be streamlined through the unified interface, enabling organisations to manage and monitor their disaster recovery processes centrally. Administrators can easily configure and test disaster recovery plans, monitor the replication of data and ensure quick recovery in the event of a disaster.
By consolidating various networking and security tasks into a unified and user-friendly interface, organisations can streamline operations, enhance security, and gain comprehensive insights. This consolidated approach proves particularly valuable in addressing essential hybrid-cloud use cases, enabling secure migrations, efficient multi-cloud connectivity, remote workforce protection, cloud workload security, and robust disaster recovery.