Secure a Remote Workforce by Killing the VPN

VPN limitations in the modern IT landscape

VPN served its purpose well, but Zero Trust Network Access (ZTNA) is now transforming the definition of remote access solutions.

It answered the IT architectures and business challenges of its time. Employees needed to access centralized data centers hosting enterprise applications when they were off-site, and these connections had to be encrypted and work over any internet connection. And while they were able to handle these tasks for decades, the landscape that it serves has changed.

VPN’s goal was not to secure cloud applications. Designers did not intend it to be elastically scalable. And the creators never intended to provide complete visibility into user activity and traffic..

The emergence of Zero Trust Network Access (ZTNA)

As this year’s tidal shift to remote work swept across the globe, the cracks in the veneer of VPN became gaping holes with real productivity and security risks to the business. As these gaps were exposed, Zero Trust Network Access (ZTNA) emerged as the best way to provide the same functionality of VPN but with a greatly improved security posture that can be applied consistently across modern IT ecosystems.

ZTNA (also sometimes referred to as “software-defined perimeter” or “SDP”) is a networking approach that enables enterprises to provide access to all the applications and services an employee needs regardless of their physical location. It does this by providing micro-segmented network access to individual applications instead of access to the wider corporate network. ZTNA bases all connectivity on a user’s identity and the context around a user’s request.

This tightening of access coupled with increased visibility, control, and integration with security applications leaves few excuses for IT administrations to remain with dated VPN technologies.

The need to transition from VPN to ZTNA

It is time to kill the VPN. It has served its purpose well, but just as the cloud transformed the way that applications and services are delivered, ZTNA is now transforming the definition of remote access solutions.

This blog is an abstract of Trustgrid Chief Product Officer, Joe Gleinser’s, article on Network Computing. Continue reading the full article here