GTT teams with Palo Alto to power SASE platform

Secure access service edge platform will offer advanced security techniques, fortifying network access from any location

Global cloud networking provider GTT Communications is joining forces with cyber security firm Palo Alto Networks in a managed security service partnership to power a new secure access service edge (SASE) platform.

The companies regard SASE as the latest trend, and say the project will use their respective networking and security capabilities to fortify network security and cloud usage from any location and any device as enterprises adapt their networks to the more dynamic requirements of a hybrid workforce

The firms cited research from IDC which estimated that 53% of workers are planning to continue to work remotely or adopt a hybrid home-office arrangement as a result of the pandemic, and said organisations need secure and flexible global network systems to adapt. 

They also quoted Gartner, which defined SASE in 2019, as saying: “Digitisation, work from anywhere and cloud-based computing have accelerated cloud-delivered SASE offerings to enable anywhere, anytime access from any device.” Gartner projects that by 2025, at least 60% of enterprises will have explicit strategies and timelines for SASE adoption encompassing user, branch and edge access – up from 10% in 2020.

The new GTT SASE platform, which uses Palo Alto Networks Prisma Access, will deploy a set of security features into a single cloud-delivered platform that protects application traffic, providing connectivity to GTT’s global Tier 1 network for what the firms say will be the best possible application performance and user experience for customers.

The integrated networking and security functions are designed to reduce complexity, increase centralised control and efficiency, improve network performance and latency, and enable businesses to adopt a zero-trust network access approach that attempts to mitigate potential security vulnerabilities that can result from a work-from-anywhere model.

With the new SASE platform, GTT says users will gain access to the network based on their identity, device and application – rather than the IP address or physical location – enabling seamless and secure networking between users, private and public clouds, and the enterprise datacentre.

“Customers are seeking highly secure and flexible global network solutions to adapt to the rapidly changing business environment, new workforce models and ever-expanding security threat landscape,” said GTT COO Don MacNeil. “Adopting the most advanced security and networking technologies, and enabling our customers to leverage them readily, is the centrepiece of our product strategy, and we are pleased to partner with Palo Alto Networks to meet the stringent security requirements of our customers that GTT’s SASE global network services platform will deliver.”

Kumar Ramachandran, SVP of products at Palo Alto Networks, added: “Many organisations are now turning to managed security service providers to achieve security that is easily implemented as an overlay service to simplify deployments at the branch. This new partnership will bring secure cloud scalability to the customers of GTT.”

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