Imagine being able to deliver business agility through simplification of your network and security architecture, consolidation of vendors, and native integration of the various point solutions you have today. Imagine being able to better manage organisational and IT risk through centralised management of policies. Imagine reducing your operating costs and improving user experience while embarking on the zero-trust journey. What if you could securely enable hundreds or even thousands of employees to work remotely in a matter of hours or days? These are the possibilities promised by SASE.
It only took weeks after the introduction of SASE by Gartner for the Titans of the Cybersecurity world to announce SASE offerings. Palo Alto Networks, Zscaler, Cisco, Akamai have all published SASE based architectures and go to market strategies. In my humble opinion, however, not a single vendor offers the entire stack. It is not possible to call any of these vendors and ask for an end to end SASE solution. There is still a real need for integration between some components. It is also important to not see SASE as the silver bullet to all your challenges. Gartner places SASE on the Innovation Trigger zone of their hype cycle and that means the peak of inflated expectations and more importantly, the trough of disillusionment are yet to come.
There is nothing ugly about the concept and its supporting architecture. What will be ugly however is the risk of over-promising and under-delivering by vendors and service integrators alike. It is important businesses understand that SASE is an architectural vision and getting to that vision requires you embarking on a journey. SASE also dares to bring identity, networking, and security teams together, a task at which many have failed.