What Does the Future of Networking Look Like with SASE?

In 2019, Gartner predicted that the "future of network security is in the cloud." Fast forward to today, and it seems that the future of networking has already arrived in the form of Secure Access Service Edge or SASE.

Driven by the growth of hybrid work, SASE technology will continue to post healthy growth rates in 2023 and beyond. The latest analysis reveals that the global market size for SASE will grow from $1.9 billion in 2023 to $5.9 billion by 2028.

But what is driving the transition from the traditional network to the SASE environment? John Burke of Nemertes Research sums up the issue well when he says that "enterprise networks [are handling] more external traffic than ever before." Traditional networks cannot handle traffic flow between SaaS environments, IoT devices, and remote workers. This is largely because traditional networking models continue to rely on VPN technologies.

That said, for the purpose of this blog, we shed light on the future of networking in the context of SASE. So, without further ado, let's get right into it.

SASE Trends to Watch for in 2023

SASE is putting the cloud at the center of the modern network. This is crucial as more organizations move to cloud-native and SaaS applications in 2023. Here are 5 SASE trends to watch out for in 2023 and ahead:

  1. Zero Trust Security (ZTS)

    Zero trust networks (ZTNs) do not trust requests from any source. ZTNs can complement SASE in making the modern environment more secure. By integrating SASE with ZTN, enterprises can provide dynamic access control to cloud-hosted applications and services. For instance, a sales executive will have different access permissions when working at the office and a coffee shop.

    Also, organizations can break down network silos to improve their cybersecurity effectiveness. A cloud-powered SASE framework can truly deliver the convergence of technologies through common services, high availability, and a centralized security policy.

  2. SASE-as-a-Service

    As a cloud-native technology, SASE can secure distributed networks using consistent security-related policies. Notably, organizations need a flexible and scalable SASE architecture as connected systems keep increasing. This is why SASE vendors are now offering the SaaS-based SASE-as-a-service model.

    Like any other cloud model, this delivery model benefits organizations in line with lower capital expenditure and higher scalability. SASE-as-a-Service offerings also constitute:

    • Cloud-powered next-gen Firewalls-as-a-Service (FWaaS)
    • Secure Web Gateways (SWGs)
    • Cloud Access Security Broker (CASB)
    • Domain Name System (DNS) security

  3. Single-Vendor SASE

    Gartner predicts the emergence of single-vendor SASE, with 50% of SD-WAN purchases and 33% of SASE deployments being enabled by a single vendor by 2025. Gartner also projects that 65% of enterprises will consolidate their individual SASE components "into one or two explicitly partnered SASE vendors" by 2025.

    Among the current SASE trends, more organizations are demanding single-vendor SASE solutions. Small-to-medium enterprises with siloed networks are, in particular, driving this demand. Here's what single-vendor SASE solutions can offer:

    • A single-pass scanning process to improve the security posture
    • A single and unified admin console to simplify network administration

  4. AI-Powered SASE

    Generative AI is expected to be the next frontier for SASE and Zero trust security. Organizations are now using AI to mitigate cyber risks. Through continuous monitoring of network systems, AI and machine learning algorithms can detect and analyze cyber threats within a few milliseconds.

    By further integrating ZTNs, SASE-powered systems can detect and prevent unauthorized access to sensitive data. Here are some of the capabilities of AI-powered SASE:

    • Analyzing network data (using logs) for any anomalies or deviations
    • Generating risk scores to reduce false positives and to identify any compromised assets
    • Keeping track of sensitive data - including who is accessing it
    • Identifying network endpoints and authenticating clients

  5. User Experience

    Most organizations prioritize their network security requirements over the user experience (UX). However, they can no longer afford to ignore or compromise the UX. Favorably, SASE technology can integrate security and networking with a unified framework, thus helping to improve the user experience.

    Here are some ways in which SASE elevates the user experience:

    • Routing network traffic to the closest cloud center, thus improving application performance and reducing latency.
    • Scaling network and security services according to current demand, thus providing a consistent UX across devices and networks.
    • Supporting many types of connections, including direct access and private networks, thus allowing users to access remote resources more efficiently.

So, What Does the Future of Networking Look Like?

By 2024, 40% of companies are expected to develop a complete SASE adoption plan. With hybrid operating models, SASE offers a more secure and cost-effective solution for securing network resources.

Going forward, CIOs need to meet the dual challenge of growing cyber threats and the shortage of skilled resources. This can drive companies to consolidate their vendors and shift to the cloud-powered security "as-a-service" model.

Instead of investing in many security tools, organizations will prefer the network security support provided by SASE and ZTN frameworks. These frameworks fulfill the demands of digital transformation initiatives, such as enhanced security and simplified operations.

Beyond 2023, SASE technology will lay the foundation for the next generation of WAN and security solutions.

How Can Incrux Help

Along with VPN, in today's complex network environments, technologies like ZTNA and SASE are rising to the occasion.

At Incrux, we offer a range of security-related services in endpoint engineering, security testing, and zero-trust security. Our team can help you secure your network with a customized security solution. Get in touch with our experts today!