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Securing Applications: Questions to Consider for Your Roadmap

Feb 17, 20234 mins
Digital Transformation

Organizations moving applications into the cloud are confronted with even more security and operational challenges than ever and require a strategic roadmap. Before creating that roadmap, these three questions must be addressed.

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As organizations continue to pursue and even accelerate their digital transformation, successfully executing the applications part of the journey is critical to their success. This is no easy task as applications now can reside anywhere — from the physical and virtual data center to hybrid and multi-clouds to edge compute instances.

In light of this development, organizations moving applications into the cloud are confronted with even more security and operational challenges than ever and require a strategic roadmap. To help organizations address the challenges of securing application journeys now and in the future, there are three key questions that need to be asked and appropriately answered before creating their roadmap:

  1. Can the solutions work as part of a cybersecurity mesh platform?

As more applications and cloud edges appear, organizations are faced with greater complexity and visibility blinds spots. To address this, a broad, integrated, and automated cybersecurity mesh platform is a critical need. A mesh platform empowers organizations with centralized management and visibility, consistent policies, and automated response and operations.

  1. Can the solutions be deployed anywhere applications live, be it cloud, data center, or edge compute?

Ensure the solutions you are choosing to protect your application journey can be deployed wherever your applications need to live. Look for security solutions that are available across a wide range of form factors: appliances, virtual machines (VM), hosted, and cloud-native. This will also enable your organization to benefit from consistent security as the same policies can be applied everywhere.

At a minimum, consider deploying the following to achieve broad coverage of use cases to both solve for today’s needs and build the foundation for those in the future:

  • Secure data center, cloud, and edge compute networks Choose a network firewall solution that offers the same capabilities with consistent policies — whether it is deployed in the cloud, on-premises at physical and virtual data centers, or private clouds.
  • Secure web applications and APIs Select a web application firewall (WAF) that offers advanced artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) capabilities to help automatically discover and protect APIs — and includes advanced protection against bots.
  • Secure clouds natively Employ cloud-native application protection to manage risk, gain visibility, and reduce friction across all cloud environments. Ensure that the solution provides prioritized and actionable insights to reduce complexity and speed response.
  • Secure workloads Use cloud-native protection to secure workloads. For critical workloads, consider also deploying an endpoint detection and response (EDR) solution inside the workload itself for a deeper level of visibility and protection.
  1. Can the solutions support flexible cloud consumption models?

The decision to pursue application journeys in the cloud is not just about technology, it is also a financial decision. To give your organization flexibility to scale as needed, ensure that the security solution you go with offers a range of consumption models to meet the needs of your organization, such as term-based (BYOL), pay-as-you-go (PAYG), or other enterprise agreements.

Securing any application journey on any cloud

Settle on a solution that empowers your organization to achieve its digital acceleration goals for today — and tomorrow. The best choice will offer cloud security solutions that are natively integrated across major cloud platforms and technologies. Also, the ideal solution will be deployable directly from cloud marketplaces, as physical and virtual appliances, as SaaS-based and as cloud-native options — and provide the ability to extend cybersecurity across anywhere applications are located.

A solution that has a combination of these features will help you reduce operational complexity and reduce deployment friction especially in the cloud while providing greater visibility. Additionally, it will lead to robust security effectiveness via capabilities that include consistent policies across all hybrid and multi-clouds, centralized management, deep visibility across applications and workloads, and, of course, threat intelligence.

The right choice will lead to your IT team delivering a consistent, secured, and optimized experience for your organization to build, deploy, and run cloud applications across all its data centers, clouds, and hybrid and edge-compute deployments.

Learn how Fortinet’s cloud security solutions provide the necessary visibility and control across cloud infrastructures, enabling secure applications and connectivity from data center to cloud.