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Boost Productivity In The Hybrid Workforce With Modern SASE Solutions

  Mike Thweatt     Jun 11, 2024

The FortiSASE platform provides a unified, comprehensive SASE solution to ensure enhanced protection, adaptability, and security for your hybrid workforce.The modern workforce is no longer confined to the traditional office environment. The rise of remote work and cloud adoption has created a hybrid landscape where employees access data and applications from various locations and devices.

This flexibility also introduces new security challenges. Traditional network security tools, designed for centralized corporate networks, struggle to protect a distributed workforce. Ensuring comprehensive security and seamless connectivity, regardless of location, has become a top priority. A secure access service edge (SASE) architecture addresses these challenges by integrating advanced networking and security features into a unified platform. Let’s explore how SASE provides an effective, scalable solution for securing the hybrid workforce.

Finding The Right Tools

Traditional security solutions rely on a centralized network perimeter, which is effective when most users and applications are within the corporate network. However, in a hybrid environment, employees accessing resources from outside the perimeter face several issues:

  • Limited Visibility: Traditional firewalls struggle to see beyond the network perimeter. Traffic from remote employee devices becomes blind spots, leaving organizations vulnerable to malware, phishing, and unauthorized data transfers.
  • Inconsistent Security Policies: Enforcing consistent security policies across diverse user devices and locations is challenging with traditional tools. These tools are often siloed, complicating the creation of a unified security posture.
  • Poor User Experience: Legacy VPNs can create a sluggish and cumbersome user experience for remote workers, hindering productivity and compromising network and data access.

SASE has emerged as a promising solution to address these common limitations. It takes a cloud-based approach, consolidating network security functions like Secure Web Gateway (SWG), Cloud Access Security Broker (CASB), and Zero Trust Network Access (ZTNA) into a single, unified service.

While SASE offers long term promise for hybrid workforces, some solutions lack security or seamless integration, leading to inconsistent protection and user experience. Organizations can leverage SASE effectively by carefully evaluating capabilities and potential integration issues. However, even strong SASE requires ongoing vigilance for a well-rounded security strategy.

Read: Redefining Healthcare Security With A Single Vendor SASE Solution

Meeting The Needs Of The Hybrid Workforce

A unified SASE solution, built on a single-vendor approach, offers a more complete solution. It secures the hybrid workforce with the same underlying OS, AI-powered services, unified agent, management, and experience monitoring. Unified SASE secures all users, devices, and edges, including micro-branches, offering flexibility for organizations with disparate architectures and requirements.

Leveraging a high-performance, scalable cloud network, unified SASE incorporates best-in-class components like Security Service Edge (SSE), Universal ZTNA, a Unified Agent, Secure SD-WAN, and Digital Experience Monitoring. This holistic approach ensures comprehensive security for users everywhere. Fortinet's FortiSASE exemplifies this approach.

What Makes FortiSASE Stand Out?

Traditionally, security features resided at the network edge. FortiSASE changes this by migrating the security stack to the cloud within geographically dispersed data centers known as “points of presence” (PoPs). These PoPs offer global coverage and house scalable instances with integrated security services like firewalls, secure web gateways (SWGs), Cloud Access Security Brokers (CASBs), Zero Trust Network Access (ZTNA), and SD-WAN.

FortiSASE simplifies management by consolidating these security functions into a unified, cloud-based platform:

  • Simplified Management: FortiSASE streamlines administration by providing a single vendor for both the SASE platform and the security agent.
  • Unmatched Endpoint Security: FortiSASE leverages Fortinet's expertise in endpoint security to deliver unmatched protection.
  • Enhanced Scalability: The cloud-based architecture scales to accommodate growing user bases and network demands.
  • Improved Performance: Strategically positioned PoPs ensure low latency and a fast user experience for users everywhere.
  • Reduced Costs: FortiSASE eliminates the need for on-premises hardware and software, leading to significant cost savings.
  • AI-Powered Security Services: FortiGuard Labs, Fortinet's threat intelligence unit, powers FortiSASE with advanced AI-powered security services. These services continuously analyze network traffic to identify and block sophisticated threats in real-time.

Read: Maximize Hybrid Cloud Potential With Advanced Cloud Security Architecture

Solving Cybersecurity Challenges

The hybrid work model presents unique challenges, such as securing remote endpoints, managing diverse devices, and ensuring consistent policy enforcement across various locations. FortiSASE effectively addresses these challenges:

  • Comprehensive Security: This solution integrates seamlessly with the Fortinet Security Fabric, leveraging FortiOS to deliver broad visibility, granular control, and proactive protection across the entire network environment.
  • Consistent Protection: FortiSASE provides cloud-delivered security with built-in ZTNA, ensuring consistent protection for users working from anywhere.
  • Simplified Management: The FortiClient agent provides a one-stop solution for ZTNA, traffic redirection to SASE, and endpoint protection, streamlining security management.
  • Unified Visibility And Management: FortiSASE offers exceptional visibility across both on-premises and remote users. FortiManager provides a centralized policy engine and management system, ensuring consistent enforcement regardless of location. Additionally, FortiAnalyzer, working alongside FortiSASE, delivers centralized logging and response capabilities for network and security events, facilitating swift incident response.
  • Unparalleled User Experience: FortiSASE intelligently steers applications over the most suitable connections, optimizing business productivity and ensuring a seamless user experience. Workers accessing corporate applications through SD-WAN SPA benefit from superior performance and reliability.

Organizations across various industries, such as healthcare, finance, and education, have successfully deployed FortiSASE to protect their hybrid workforces and ensure data security and regulatory compliance.

Final Thoughts

The rise of the hybrid work model creates new security challenges. Fortinet's FortiSASE offers a unified SASE platform that directly addresses these challenges. By combining networking and security, FortiSASE provides a streamlined solution for businesses, empowering them to secure their hybrid workforce with reliable features, flexible deployment options, and a user-centric design. This approach fosters success in today's shifting market.

Partnering with SASE experts like WEI unlocks FortiSASE’s full potential. WEI develops customized implementation strategies for seamless integration, enabling a secure, productive, and future-proof hybrid workforce. Contact us today to learn how FortiSASE can safeguard your hybrid workforce and propel your business toward a secure and efficient future.

Next steps: Managing and securing data, applications, and systems has become more arduous and time-consuming with the rise of cloud adoption and the expansion of the digital attack surface. To help remedy this, FortiAnalyzer offers a powerful log management, analytics, and reporting platform that features a single console to manage, orchestrate, and respond. Download our free tech brief below to read.

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Tags  Fortinet SD-WAN SASE cybersecurity hybrid workforce FortiSASE

Mike Thweatt

Written by Mike Thweatt

About WEI

WEI is an innovative, full service, customer-centric IT solutions provider. We're passionate about solving your technology challenges and we develop custom technology solutions that drive real business outcomes.

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