How to Take Back Remote Access Control with a Software-Defined Perimeter

March 17, 2021

More people than ever work outside the office, which places a renewed focus on secure remote access for company networks. Many businesses need to access Citrix Virtual Apps or Microsoft Remote Desktop Services, and still rely on VPN's or other solutions. Unfortunately, VPN's are complex to manage, costly and needlessly extend company networks to unsecured locations — and alternatives are typically challenging to set up, manage and use. But as the probability of cyberattacks rises, the risk and potential losses of not having a scalable remote access solution also increase. 

The answer? Use a solution in conjunction with your existing setup, which provides a zero-trust access environment with additional benefits such as BYOD, fast installation, scalability, affordable, permission access and a stable connection with no bandwidth issues. It's not an all-or-nothing approach — you don't need to kick out your VPN tomorrow! But you can minimise the risks that come with VPN and, importantly, enable the business by supporting effective remote working.  

 

Why we need a new approach

Consider this: many companies face significant challenges scaling remote access. The very immediate need caused by COVID-19, for example, caught out a lot of people. Those already using VPN found themselves struggling to set up more VPN connections. And organisations that opened up RDP ports also found it hard to provide sufficient access. Whether the solution was VPN or RDP, the single biggest hurdle to scaling was overcoming complexity, which means it took days or even weeks to scale. On top of this, organisations also struggled to add separate two-factor authentication solutions to their remote access solutions. Unsurprisingly, IT teams are now asking what they can do to avoid facing similar future situations. 

 

What makes a software-defined perimeter different?

A software-defined perimeter like Soliton's G/On solution is built on two pillars: user identity and zero-trust. The first means it is completely designed around the user's identity and authorisation level — no more relying on the device to authenticate access. The second applies the least privilege principle to the network (it's a need-to-know basis), reducing the attack surface while also increasing IT's visibility into our user activity and applications. With a software-defined perimeter, network resources are made inaccessible by default. An authenticated user can only access one or more specific services inside the network when explicitly authorised, rather than receiving the broad network access available when using a VPN. Therefore, a software-defined perimeter isolates the company services from the internet, stopping almost all forms of network attacks.

Remove complexity = improved security + scalability

We've already highlighted the challenges of scaling multi-product remote access solutions. So how is a solution like G/On different? Quite simply, it's quick to install and provides everything users need to access company resources securely. G/On has built-in features for redundancy and load balancing, which means organisations can scale up remote working in minutes rather than weeks. And, of course, it has the security features you would expect, including two-factor authentication, authorisation, data encryption, network protection and secure application access

 

Your industry sector doesn't matter - G/On helps solves the underlying remote access challenges

G/On can be used by any organisation or industry vertical. It's a single place for you to control exactly who can see what on your networks, and it works with both managed and unmanaged devices.

While the specific requirements for a law firm could be different to a manufacturer, G/On enables them both to solve the underlying challenge: Enabling full-time or temporary employees to securely access the applications required to get their jobs done from an unmanaged location and/or device. Even if 'remotely' means being in the office, G/On can still help. It supports consultants working from a customer location or external contractors and freelancers working with your company data.

 

Discover how you can take back control. Download your copy of the eBook: How Software-Defined Perimeters Help Organisations Scale Secure Remote Access

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