Digital innovation and an increased number of devices accessing data across different channels can be a major challenge for any business. Organizations are facing rising traffic volumes from the end-users and IoT devices, SaaS applications, and data from employees, consumers, and partners. Many of the organizations rely on centralized data centers to handle their traffic needs, but the traditional approach is fading. Traditional network and computing platforms are under tremendous stress with increased demand for users; thus, IT teams need to manage and maintain distributed clouds.
Distributed cloud infrastructure is the new application of cloud computing technology to interconnect data and applications served with geographic locations. Distributed for an IT sector, data center means that a technology/data is shared across multiple locations with multiple systems in focus. The new hybrid design (distributed environment) allows the applications and computing to adjust the growth and sudden surge in traffic levels by extending storage and computing resources. The scaling up can be a challenge with the traditional technology environment as it’s not automated with resources to scale on demand. Leveraging the hybrid environment can assist the DevOps teams who work on multiple applications and demand rapid experimentation processes. Enterprises can accelerate the required prototyping of different types of applications and services that can be provided with ease as the requirements are put forth. All the fraction of manpower required will be moved to other areas of the environment.
The distributed and hybrid approach sets the tone for providing greater agility for business-critical workflows. The environment encumbers several of the required resources that use thousands of services, provide better support for advanced applications, and optimize communication patterns to eliminate the trips between data and computing resources. The challenge is, however, that applications and data today exist across various environments on-premises, co-located, private, and multiple public clouds. It increases the surface area wherein the hacker and malicious software can easily sneak in.
Every new application development technology relies heavily on resources either distributed or on-premises, with the driving workforce of the technology organization beginning with the traffic, and there needs to be a shareable resource channel. CSOs of all organizations have a backup plan ready in case of a breach or natural calamity, but how secure is the backup environment to deal with the rising threat level and surface area for attacks. To address the exponential rise in the risk level, many of the IT leaders often try to bolt the individual points with different security solutions. Patching the different security gaps that are exposed to the development/growth continues and even building on the strategy of tick boxes on the compliance requirements.
The approach of patch can be existential and a long process leading to various errors and even induce many other types of gaps. Such solutions can also lead to bigger security gaps between infrastructure, as they try to sort the access control and integrated security strategy.
With deeply integrated solutions combined with advanced capabilities designed to span and protect hybrid IT environments. All without compromising on the speed, scalability, or functionality that many of the applications today need.
Three key elements for network and security integration:
To address the rising challenge of surface attack, network and security teams need to integrate security across all parts of their hybrid IT environment. Security tools should not only work on the native solutions of the data center, but they even need to work seamlessly between different environments to satisfy various critical functions.
Hybrid IT environment comprises a mix of infrastructure, so, to satisfy the visibility and different management systems, there needs to be a mix of different tools. The mix of tools is a bigger challenge for the IT security teams to assess risks, trace security and performance issues, achieve compliance, and many more management skills. Organizations need to consider a consistent underlying security management platform that will provide the required management by interconnecting the distributed environment, and provide consistent visibility and management across the entire distributed cloud environment. Visibility across different platforms eases the requirements by consistent policy reinforcements and improved cloud operations across the environment.
As the infrastructure is spread out across various platforms, security requirements should follow suit and must start building a comprehensive security infrastructure. The security solution should exhibit the same level of elasticity, scalability, and resilience as the cloud requirements so that they can satisfy the application demand. The hybrid IT environment needs to expand and diversify while other types of security solutions should be integrated into the infrastructure operations to ensure continuous reliability and business continuity.
3. Automation in security
As the hybrid environment places unreasonable stress on the security employees, an integrated architecture must be used to leverage the automation tools across the complete hybrid cloud infrastructure. Automation will make various individual networks to function securely and to communicate with each other even provide better operational attributes and APIs to support the provisioning of consistent policy enforcing as the data and workflows are moved to switch from one environment to the other. A complete integrated security architecture is just one step toward real-time management and better with the provision of applications and workflows classifications. Organizations need to classify and enforce policies across multiple virtual, WANs, or cloud environments.
Even intelligent networking protocols need to be combined with automated security responses and accelerated management features to shrink the current risks of exposure to malicious activities and reduce the staff burden. The current management and orchestration for these automated networking and security functions need to be centralized and even be completely integrated into the single pane of glass management to ensure better configurations and policies are consistent and reliable across a distributed environment.
As the data combination changes for both public and private, the lines are set to blur out. Organizations need to evolve with a distributed cloud strategy to combat both attack surfaces that will be naturally expanding along with ways to combat new risks and complexities that can often overwhelm in situations with limited resources and budgets. To know more about cloud security strategy, download our latest whitepapers on security.