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3 Key Steps to Transforming IT Security

23rd January 2019 | In Security
Security is top of mind for every business. As people, devices, and objects become more connected, protecting all these connections and environments has become critical. Virtually every business has become a digital business – a transformation that’s given rise to significant changes on the IT landscape, and consequently new challenges for IT security. Start with the evolution of application infrastructures, which have transitioned from on-premises data centres that run physical infrastructure to highly dynamic environments that reside on public and private clouds. And consider how applications are changing. Organisations are moving away from monolithic application stacks to distributed, multi-tiered apps based on microservices. As the workforce becomes more mobile and distributed, end-user environments are evolving as well. They are no longer limited to corporately managed desktops, but are centred on mobile devices, BYOD initiatives and the IoT. As a result, environments and users aren’t contained neatly behind perimeter firewalls, but instead require more flexible, agile protection against attackers that have become more sophisticated. Even an inexperienced hacker can target a business with advanced attacks that can do real damage to its productivity, resources, and reputation. Effective security requires multiple layers of protection. And the right software solution within the infrastructure provides the best possible control point to increase visibility, enforce policy, and enable insertion of third-party services for additional intelligent protection:
  1. Secure application infrastructure abstract infrastructure from applications, improving visibility and better aligning security to apps.
The traditional perimeter-centric network security approach cannot provide enough visibility and control inside the data centre and stored data at rest has become a valuable target for attackers. The solution starts with virtualisation, and the ability to abstract the underlying infrastructure from the applications running on top of it – whether that infrastructure is on-premises or in the public cloud. This layer of abstraction provides full visibility into the data path, and an ideal enforcement point to compartmentalise applications through micro-segmentation of the network. It helps IT avoid attacks and provides an ideal point to encrypt stored data. By encrypting data at rest, at the workload level, organisations can ensure that application infrastructure data is safe, even if it falls into the wrong hands.
  1. Secure identity and endpoints employ a ubiquitous software layer across all users and endpoints for better visibility and control, without impacting the user experience.
As business goes digital, mobile devices are proliferating fast. Applying a ubiquitous software layer across all users and endpoints to verify user identity and device posture, helps address this challenge. This approach provides end-to-end visibility and control of the user and endpoint, extending all the way into the data centre or cloud, where the application infrastructure resides. With a software layer, IT can add an adaptive, conditional layer of security at each transactional level, from users to the resources they’re accessing. A single solution that protects all endpoints, including smartphones, laptops, and IoT devices means IT can seamlessly deploy any app – native, web, remote, virtual apps, and Windows desktops – through a single app catalogue with built-in single sign-on, data security, and endpoint compliance.
  1. Streamline compliance – apply software across the app infrastructure, identity, and endpoints to simplify compliance.
Regulations and requirements are growing, while the digital landscape and advanced persistent threats continue to evolve. To complicate matters, organisations are rapidly transitioning from on-premises data centres and adopting the cloud, making it even more challenging to meet business, regulatory, and policy demands. A ubiquitous software layer across application infrastructure and endpoints takes a holistic approach to compliance which provides an ideal location to implement compliance controls, and gain the visibility necessary to demonstrate compliance. The right solution provides a technology platform in which validated tools and services from ecosystem partners can be dynamically inserted to further streamline the compliance process. Robust security is essential for business networks and, as the pace of change accelerates, a ubiquitous software layer across application infrastructure and endpoints can help transform it. It maximises visibility and context of the interaction between users and applications and aligns security controls and policies to the applications being protected. We partner with VMWare to help organisations establish a software-defined environment of natively integrated compute, storage, and network virtualisation technologies with automation and management, to support any workload from traditional enterprise applications to modern cloud-native applications.
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