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Cybersecurity In-Depth

The Edge

What Exactly Is Secure Access Service Edge (SASE)?

Any company that supports a hybrid workforce should at least be familiar with this relatively new security approach.

Question: What exactly is secure access service edge (SASE)?

Shaila Shankar, SVP and general manager, Cisco Cloud Network and Security: The hybrid work environment is here to stay. People will continue to work from home some days, use devices that are both personally owned and corporate-issued, and use apps that reside in the cloud. While this level of flexibility has come to be what employees expect and has also increased productivity for organizations, it comes with an expansion of the attack surface and created increased complexity for IT, security, and networking teams.

To address these challenges, the concept of secure access service edge (SASE) has emerged. This approach converges networking and security functions — such as SD-WAN, secure web gateway (SWG), cloud access security broker (CASB), next-generation firewall (NGFW), and zero-trust network access (ZTNA) — in the cloud to deliver seamless, secure access to applications, anywhere users work. With such a unified solution, customers gain operational efficiencies by simplifying deployment, management, and policy enforcement across all environments.

Furthermore, given SASE supports branch office, remote worker, and on-premises general Internet security use cases, it is a key enabler of the digital transformation.