What service providers should expect from SASE — Raynovich


Unless you live under a submarine cable, you’ve probably heard about secure access service edge (SASE), the hot new buzzcroynm in the cybersecurity and networking technology markets. In recent months, the SASE market has been gaining real momentum, and it pays to understand why. 

End users want more consumable networking and cybersecurity technology. As cloud-based security services such as Cloudflare, Okta, and Zscaler have taken off, it has become clear that the cloud consumption model is the desired end goal for cybersecurity. 

On the enterprise networking side, software-defined wide area networking (SD-WAN) services were the starting point for connecting networks and branches to the cloud. Now, these two arenas of cloud-based networking and security are merging. SD-WAN is expanding into SASE. 

Demand for SD-WAN, security integration and cloud-based services are likely to propel the SASE market upward for many years. After reviewing survey results, speaking to end users, and looking at vendor strategies in the SASE ecosystem, Futuriom today released a new comprehensive report, Cloud Secure Edge and SASE Trends 2021, detailing some conclusions about the evolution of the SASE market.

Let’s dive in real quick for some highlights.

The SASE market potential is huge

Enterprise IT architectures no longer revolve around putting networking, compute and storage resources residing in fixed, on-premises data centers. With the movement toward the cloud, traditional networking and security approaches need a rethinking. These tools need to be more integrated with the cloud.

The SASE market marks a trend toward integrating a wide variety of networking and cybersecurity technologies. One of the broader conclusions reached by our analysis is that the SASE market is potentially huge – and is likely to be around for a long time. 

Now, SD-WAN platforms are expanding and merging with many edge and security technologies that can be considered SASE. The key element is that the “edge” has become the place where enterprise applications meet the cloud, often at local points of presence (PoPs) or cloud on-ramps. Cloud platforms have made it more expedient and efficient to integrate security and networking technologies, using approaches such as application programming interfaces (APIs), multi-tenant hosting, and yes – even containers and microservices. 

To sum it up: The cloud means that cybersecurity and networking technology should merge at the edge. 

As mentioned, it’s an acronym soup. Just some of the technologies that are likely to become part of a SASE include: SD-WAN, next-generation firewall (NGFW), firewall-as-a-service (FWaaS), secure web gateways (SWGs), and cloud access service brokers (CASBs). All of these have been fast-growing markets within themselves. A huge range of additional security technologies have the potential to be integrated into SD-WAN and SASE platforms, including data loss protection (DLP), security-defined perimeter (SDP), zero-trust network access, identity-based and contextual security, and several others.

RELATED: Inside the zero-trust networking and SASE land grab — Raynovich

Some (but not all) of the market leaders we have identified as being major players in the SASE market include: Akamai, Aryaka Networks, Cato Networks, Check Point Software, Cisco Systems, Citrix, Cloudflare, Elisity, Enea (Qosmos), Forcepoint, Fortinet, Juniper Networks, NetFoundry, Netskope, Nokia (Nuage Networks), Palo Alto Networks, Versa Networks, VMware, Zscaler.

Implications for the service provider market

Those in the service provider market might want to understand what this means. The short answer is: It will drive demand for value-added SASE services and network integration. A large part of the world will want SASE in the managed service portfolio.

Many service providers see managed services and SASE as a potential answer to needs for enterprise revenue growth. It’s also right in the sweet spot of needs for remote and hybrid workers, who need better secure enterprise connectivity. 

Many service providers are stepping up their game in providing integrated security and network services. As SD-WAN evolves into SASE, this is where the puck is going.

The Futuriom 2021 SD-WAN Managed Services Survey, which surveyed 120 enterprise end users focused on managing, showed that 67.5% of those surveyed believed that security would be a key differentiator in managed services offerings.