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SD-WAN

Masergy bolsters SD-WAN security with user-based analytics

Managed service provider Masergy is building in additional security to its SD-WAN service with its new Identity-Based WAN Analytics feature.

According to Masergy, while traditional SD-WAN services are limited to tracking IP traffic for entire sites, the new Identity-Based WAN Analytics delivers per-user analytics as a standard offering for SD-WAN customers in the Masergy SD-WAN management portal. This service provides IT teams with the tools to more quickly identify user activity and remediate risks from shadow IT, which occurs when employees utilize cloud-based SaaS without approval from corporate IT.

In addition, the new feature aims to provide increased security visibility, improved identity verification, more visibility into cloud applications and more granular control of security policies and data traffic. Masergy adds that bringing together user, network and security analytics in one management portal assists enterprises in moving forward with intent-based networking and the goal of developing autonomous networks.

"Masergy's Identity-Based WAN Analytics represents another way we are doubling down on security and adding more transparency into our SD-WAN solution," explained Terry Traina, senior vice president of engineering for Masergy, in a recent blog. "Today's CIOs, CISOs and business leaders looking to enable advanced security strategies like micro-segmentation, granular perimeter enforcement, and Zero Trust now have greater visibility with this directly integrated analytics solution."

Earlier this year, Masergy launched Shadow IT Discovery – a security tool for improving visibility into unauthorized SaaS applications for its Managed SD-WAN customers. The goal of the Shadow IT Discovery service is to improve embedded security in Masergy's SD-WAN service and provide visibility into potential causes of data breaches.

Security has become increasingly front-of-mind in the SD-WAN market. Security suppliers that integrated their services with SD-WAN vendors' platforms are making moves to provide their own SD-WAN services. Palo Alto recently set out to strengthen its corner of the SD-WAN market, announcing plans to acquire CloudGenix in a $420 million cash deal. In a recent Heavy Reading survey of 90 global respondents, 65% said they would partially or fully integrate SD-WAN security features into their security as a service (SECaaS) portfolio.

"One reason for SD-WAN growth is that the service richness of SD-WANs continues to evolve, such as with the integration of security services into those deployments," wrote Jim Hodges, chief analyst of cloud and security for Light Reading, in a recent article. "Increasingly, SD-WAN security services are becoming an important differentiator, playing a major role in the managed SD-WAN service provider selection process."

MEF has also echoed the importance of security in SD-WAN services; in January the organization launched Application Security for SD-WAN – a new project focused on defining policy criteria and actions to protect applications (application flows) over SD-WAN services. In addition, MEF is collaborating with partners such as Fortinet to develop new security standards for SD-WAN.

"These standards will ensure things like integration between connectivity and security functionality within an SD-WAN solution, as well as the use of APIs and open standards to ensure that SD-WAN can be seamlessly integrated into cloud services and service provider environments," explained Fortinet's Satish Madiraju in a recent blog.

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— Kelsey Kusterer Ziser, Senior Editor, Light Reading

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