ZTNA: A Blueprint for Securely Granting Network Access

It’s time to talk about Zero Trust Network Access (ZTNA). As new breaches hit the headlines each day, the fear of falling victim to a cyber attack is ever increasing. From healthcare providers to oil companies, no industry is safe from ransomware attacks and other online threats.

Zero Trust is one approach that IT managers can implement as an important precautionary measure. More and more security professionals are turning to the Zero Trust model to protect their organization’s most valuable resources both on-premises and in the cloud. Zero Trust ensures relevant least-privilege and secure access to corporate resources, limiting the attack surface and decreasing the chances of online attacks. By controlling all aspects of network security with a Zero Trust solution, IT managers can significantly reduce the risks of online threats across their organizations.

Granting Secure Access With Zero Trust 

The recent Log4j zero-day vulnerability was a stark reminder on how easy it is for a malicious attacker to slip by undetected and infect any one of your employees’ devices. Zero Trust poses a solution to such attacks, by monitoring your network for suspicious activities and mitigating risk.

The Zero Trust model (“never trust, always verify”) has become a popular method for securing network access in recent years. By allowing only verified users to access the company network and by limiting access to specific resources based on identity and context, Zero Trust Network Access (ZTNA) solutions use the Zero Trust approach to significantly reduce the attack surface.

By implementing ZTNA for secure network access, IT teams can have full control over who accesses the network at all times. A ZTNA platform allows you to create specific rules and policies that ensure each network segment, resource, or application is accessible only after a user has been verified by multi-factor authentication and device management verification. Even once access is granted, it is restricted to specific network resources, limiting the damage of a potential network breach.

Since a ZTNA platform provides both agent and agentless access, it is the ideal solution for working with third party contractors. By allowing limited, agentless access for users outside their organization, companies can provide secure access to outsiders without exposing the entire network.

Why ZTNA? 

Zero Trust Network Access is a set of networking and security features that protect companies from vulnerabilities that can occur both on-premise and in the cloud. Here’s what makes ZTNA the all-in-one solution for granting secure access:

  1. The ultimate VPN replacement
    Using old fashioned VPNs to secure and provide remote access in our modern world of work is extremely risky. Cybercriminals have been tremendously successful in exploiting the many vulnerabilities of legacy VPNs, especially as the “work from home” trend continues. A key problem with VPNs is their inability to segment the network. This means that once a bad actor hacks a VPN, they get free access to the entire network.

    ZTNA does what a VPN can’t. By segmenting users into groups with limited access to resources, ZTNA significantly decreases the chances of an attack and protects company data from falling into the wrong hands.

  2. Seamless network monitoring and management
    With ZTNA, user access is monitored and managed to identify and remove potential threats quickly. A high-performance ZTNA solution provides for continuous user authentication and activity monitoring.

    A breakdown of your users’ activity such as their connected region, gateway and network, log in location and time, and other details, is extremely valuable in detecting any suspicious activity and staying on top of network trends.

  3. The modern workspace solution
    VPN performance issues are the number one reason companies choose to switch to ZTNA for secure remote access. ZTNA is built with the cloud in mind and optimized for high performance and scalability, with dedicated, high-speed, and encrypted tunnels directly to cloud resources.
  4. Scale beyond limits
    ZTNA is a solution designed to scale. With no hardware to maintain, creating networks and adding bandwidth capacity can be done quickly and simply from the platform. Adding or deleting users is fast and easy, and third-party contractors can be granted agentless-access to only the applications they need to perform their job.

It’s no surprise ZTNA guarantees the best protection for organizations worldwide. In order to limit the attack surface and decrease the chances of online threats, more IT managers are dropping the outdated VPN in exchange for a broader and safer ZTNA solution.