The role of SaaS in network security

The role of SaaS in network security

Thorsten Kurpjuhn, security marketing development manager at Zyxel, discusses the role SaaS plays in keeping networks secure.

Cloud-based network security solutions are becoming increasingly prevalent, and it’s not difficult to understand why when the two worlds responsible for it are currently colliding.

On one side, the ever-increasing cybersecurity discussion is forcing companies to take drastic and immediate action, often in response to a climate that may well change only months later. And in the other corner, software-as-a-service (SaaS), as a trend, continues to rise in popularity in the wake of ‘big data’.

The end result and culmination is this aforementioned notion of cloud-based network security to bring businesses the requisite flexibility and scope to protect their data and business assets no matter the challenges ahead.

This is especially the case for small-medium-sized businesses (SMBs) who often find it a struggle to adequately defend their networks as a result of a lack of time, investment and skills. When cloud infrastructures and applications enter into the equation, few are able to effectively keep their data and networks secure.

Opting for a SaaS solution is proving to be a mitigation strategy as it enables IT teams to keep security measures up-to-date and in line with modern technologies; simultaneously keeping persistent and ever-evolving cybercriminals at bay.

Advanced Threat Protection

Amid a cybercrime and AI warfare climate, SMBs with limited resources are of course most vulnerable, but not exclusively so. Larger enterprises have just as much – if not more - to lose, and the benefits that SaaS can provide in combating the threat crosses the border of company size.

A move to the cloud for all companies, but especially SMBs, is necessary due to the rise of big data and AI, but with this comes a vital need to veer away from traditional security solutions in order to shield against the threats that big data and AI equally present.

Advanced Threat Protection (ATP) has already become more widespread in 2019 as a way of offering real-time monitoring and protection of networks; able to silo threats before they have a chance to deploy. Sandboxing is also proving an effective strategy in the cloud as a more diverse and customisable way to set up defences.

Either way, businesses can’t afford to wait for their firewall or virus checker’s next upgrade to deal with real-time insecurity. And this is where SaaS serves as a natural next venture for businesses in a fight against cybercrime that they’re actually favourites to win as long as they prepare accordingly.

Take control by relinquishing control

Where there is demand, there is inevitably response among the tech community, and SMBs certainly aren’t short of allies when it comes to this potentially daunting strategy.

A growing number of cloud analytics service providers are now available to aid both them and managed service providers through their responses to network threats.

The key word is ‘control’. Rather than holding out for and putting trust in firewall upgrades while cyberthreats evolve and change tact; SaaS solutions such as ATP and sandboxing bring real-time responsiveness and inherently adapt in line with technological advancements in the same way that malware will be.

This prospect of control doesn’t further strain already sensitive time and resource restraints either. In fact, cloud-based visual analytics and reporting solutions mitigate these concerns by working discreetly in the cloud and centralising the overall view and collation of threat data. IT personnel can then pull upon relevant stats and data at their own discretion before taking more informed countermeasures against the threats being spotted and posed.

In-depth analytics provide clear insight into attacks made on the network, empowering ATP and USG firewall users to take the right course of action and better defend their businesses against cyberthreats.

Futureproofing

The question now resides for SMBs, not whether to explore the possibility of cloud-based network security solutions, but which provider to put their faith in. With the extent of data under each company’s roof these days, it’s almost unwaveringly better placed under a third-party specialist’s roof that can properly protect against the elements.

Services under this guise not only evolve in accordance with the threat landscape, but will scale in tow with your own company’s continuous improvement and expansion. Better still, SaaS brings a level of bespoke provision and customisability that takes time and cost-sensitive forecasting out of the equation. It’s futureproofing works hand-in-hand with internal efficiency and risk management; all at the behest of a trusted partner.

And of course, parameters like ‘efficiency’, ‘cybersecurity’ and ‘futureproofing’ are relevant beyond the baby-steps of SMBs. We’re entering a business world driven by data that will manifest in volumes relative to the size of the company generating it.

Taking this pivotal and vast data out of your own hands may be the most responsible step you can take in keeping threats at bay, and in simultaneously harnessing the best that cloud can offer both now and in the future.