Remote Access Solutions: some tips by Gartner

In one of its latest publication, Gartner (global research and advisory firm providing information, advice, and tools for leaders in IT, finance, HR, customer service and support, communications, legal and compliance, marketing, sales, and supply chain functions) explained that remote access VPN was thought of as a dying technology until COVID-19 changed the way people work. In this research, Gartner included several variables that each company should consider before selecting their remote access solutions.

The first four variables are:
Who the users are and what their job function is – Some employees may require more bandwidth than an average user who simply checks emails.
What kind of device is being used and who owns it – If a company owns the laptops is much easier secure than a personally owned device.
What kind of applications and data do users need to access and are these applications and data located on-premises or in the cloud - Users who only need to use dedicated SaaS applications, having an always-on VPN to the corporate network would deliver a poorer performance versus using an access management tool.
Where is a user located - A wide array of data security, labor, and privacy laws spread across countries and local jurisdictions complicates offline data storage choices. Once use cases are determined based on the four variables, users can be put into different service offerings such as cloud-only, remote user or highly regulated and secure.

Consequently these variables, the first section which Gartner includes, is about the connection requirement . In fact, before evaluating individual remote technologies, it is important to understand the current status of any existing remote access deployment.

The second section is about determining the use cases and selecting the right remote access product . Even if there is an existing, workable product in place today, it still may not be optimal for providing the best experience for all users or with the scale required to support all in a crisis. As detailed previously, variables dictate the requirement to deploy multiple products. These include:
• Users’ job functions
• Types of devices they need to use and who owns the device
• Applications and data they need to access and where that data is stored
• Geographic location of the user

The third section is about knowing users and security requirements . Companies should use endpoint protection platforms (EPPs) and possible EPP vendors, to protect themselves from potential mobile threats. Moreover, companies should know if users need access to highly sensitive or secure data, if so they should strengthen their security systems for that kind of user.

The fourth and last section is about virtualisation . If security requirements prohibit storing data on individual personal devices or if Windows applications must be run on non-Windows (or unknown) devices, virtualization is an ideal option. Even if It is important to note that any virtual solution on a smartphone or tablet frequently suffers from poor usability, and any application needed should be redesigned to support the required devices when time is available to do so.

The words which stand out from these tips are high security and high connectivity , all the requirements needed to deliver a good remote access experience are inside SDWAN. In fact, with SD-WAN, businesses have more security, optimised cloud connectivity and, simplified management.
Moreover, Cato Cloud-based software-defined WAN (SD-WAN) provides a solution to the challenges of branch networking. Cloud-based points-of-presence (PoPs) connected by layer-1 network connections backed by SLAs provide high-performance, reliable, and affordable networking. The network of cloud-based PoPs makes it possible for users to connect from anywhere with minimal latency, and an integrated security stack provides security throughout the network.
Contact us today to find out more about our Cato SD-WAN solutions.