Understanding SASE – The Convergence of Security and Networking

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A SASE solution combines many point security and network services into a single platform delivered as a service. That includes CASBs, firewalls, and secure web gateways.

Security and networking services are delivered to the network’s edge via points of presence, reducing latency and optimizing performance. This makes it easier for employees to work from anywhere.

Implementing a SASE Framework

So, what is SASE? SASE transcends the capabilities of conventional security models by delivering many benefits that cater to the needs of contemporary network environments. These advantages are enhanced security posture and threat protection, streamlined networking and security functions management, and improved network performance and user experience. Thanks to the SASE framework’s unified approach, interconnectivity no longer comes at the expense of security.

SASE enables businesses to deliver services from points of presence near the end-user, which reduces latency and optimizes server performance. This also eliminates traffic backhauling, lowering costs and increasing productivity. It also eliminates the need to choose between security and accessibility, as SASE can dynamically add resources during peak demand. This means employees can be productive no matter where they are without losing access to critical business applications.


Managing multiple security tools requires dedicated staff and resources. SASE eliminates the need for numerous physical appliances and enables network administrators to manage all edge protection from a single multitenant cloud platform. This reduces overhead and minimizes costs.

SASE offers centralized visibility across all hybrid environments for a bird’s-eye-view of the entire network. As a result, it’s easier to identify issues, implement consistent policies, and protect all edges with unified defenses. This provides significant security improvements over traditional architectures that force traffic through primary choke points, resulting in blind spots and leaving organizations vulnerable.

SASE also leverages the latest software-defined networking technologies to optimize network performance. For example, next-generation SD-WAN reroutes cloud and SaaS traffic to nearby points of presence for direct connectivity. This boosts application performance and prevents latency problems associated with VPN gateways and backhauling.

Considering your organization’s unique IT environment before implementing SASE is essential. For example, a security-only approach may be sufficient for some environments. But you’ll need more comprehensive protections for others to address the evolving threat landscape. If your organization is still determining its security needs, it’s best to consult with an experienced SASE vendor for guidance. This will help ensure a smooth migration and better security outcomes. In addition, you’ll want to ensure that your SASE solution offers comprehensive support for key security components such as endpoint detection and response (EDR) and cloud workload protection.


Organizations must keep up with constantly evolving cybersecurity threats and provide secure, reliable connections to remote or mobile workers. SASE solves these challenges by combining networking and security functions traditionally delivered as point products into one integrated solution. It reduces costs, complexity, and risk, achieves a least-privileged model, ensures consistent policy enforcement, and enhances network performance and user experience.

Unlike traditional security architectures, SASE inspects traffic and makes services accessible from points of presence close to the end users, eliminating the need for backhauling and enabling organizations to deploy more capacity when demand increases and scale back down when it does. It also provides a more secure and seamless user experience, with access based on identity markers rather than the site, eliminating performance issues associated with multi-hop routing.

When selecting a solution, it is essential to understand how a SASE provider operates their delivery network. It is easy to take for granted that a cloud-based vendor will have global coverage with unlimited capacity and scalability, but this is often untrue. Moreover, not all SASE solutions are created equal, and the terms and conditions of different vendors can differ significantly. This can directly impact the quality of SASE delivery, from performance to downtime and even data sovereignty and regulatory compliance concerns.


The convergence of networking and security functions within a single solution provides the opportunity to simplify your IT architecture, reduce costs, and improve efficiency. It also eliminates the need for complex integrations between various networking and security systems that generally overlap in functionality and can lead to unnecessary complexity and cost.

A true SASE solution combines network connectivity (such as SD-WAN) with advanced network security services such as a Secure Web Gateway (SWG), Next Generation Firewall (NGFW), and Data Loss Prevention (DLP). These capabilities provide a robust platform for your enterprise to meet evolving cyber threats and user needs.

For example, SASE allows you to implement security policies based on identity markers that identify specific devices, users, and locations rather than on IT-controlled access points or network sites. This allows you to apply context-aware security that considers your organization’s WAN and internet bandwidth availability, the risk/trust posture of the device connecting, and application and data sensitivity.

The convergence of networking and security functions in a SASE solution also allows you to bypass costly Multiprotocol Label Switching (MPLS) lines to connect remote offices, headquarters, cloud environments, and users. This enables you to scale your business without compromising security or performance. It also eliminates the need for redundant infrastructure, such as multiple onsite firewalls that have to share a database and synchronize policies across them.