Securing the Edge in a Hybrid Environment

A year ago, the buzz in cybersecurity was around how to best secure a remote workforce. Today, organizations have to consider how to secure a hybrid environment, with not just a mix of on-premises and cloud-based infrastructure but also with a workforce that is splitting time between the office and a remote site.

“The shift to remote and hybrid work is one of the most important changes to have taken place as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Rafi Kretchmer, VP of product marketing at Check Point Software, in a formal statement. “Many organizations have had to compromise network performance and protection across their distributed environments because they use multiple different point products, which leads to management complexity and fragmented threat visibility.”

The shift requires a different approach to security. Because the enterprise perimeter has dissolved and applications now reside everywhere, the cloud is defining security solutions, and that means securing the new normal work environment at the edge.

Challenges to Securing the Hybrid Environment

According to Russ Schafer, head of product marketing, Security Platforms at Check Point, the new perimeter, defined by cloud, mobile and remote work, has significant cybersecurity implications for the entire organization. These include:

Complex management: Scaling hardware-dependent remote access infrastructure impedes agility and managing multiple point products leads to higher overhead and inconsistent security policies.
Increased security risk. As users access networks and applications from outside the perimeter firewall, the attack surface expands. “Broad network access increases the risk of lateral movement and can lead to a breach,” Schafer said, as does the need to provide secure access for unmanaged and BYOD devices.
Poor user experience. Routing all internet and cloud-bound traffic to the on-premises data center for security inspection causes congestion, latency and downtime for users.
Fragmented visibility. Disparate solutions make it difficult to gain a single audit trail of all user activity and obfuscate the organization’s true security posture.

Meeting these security challenges requires…