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Since the inception of SASE, there’s been a remarkable amount of breast-beating over the number of features offered by SASE solutions.
That is a mistake.
SASE innovation has always been about the convergence of security and networking capabilities into a cloud service. The core capabilities of SASE are not new. Their convergence in appliances isn’t new either; that’s what we call UTMs. It’s the delivery as a secure networking global cloud service that is so revolutionary. Only with one cloud service connecting and securing the entire enterprise – remote users sites, and cloud resources – worldwide can enterprises realize the cost savings, increased agility, operational simplicity, deeper security insight and more promised by SASE.
Too often, though, media and analyst communities miss the essential importance of a converged cloud platform. You’ll read about vendor market share without consideration if the vendor is delivering a converged solution or if it’s just their old appliances marketed under the SASE brand. You’ll see extensive features tables but very little about whether those capabilities exist in one software stack, managed through one interface – the hallmarks of a platform.
GigaOm’s Radar Report Accurately Captures State of SASE Platform Convergence
Which is why I found GigaOm’s recent Radar Report on the Secure Service Access (SSA) market so significant. It is one of the few reports to accurately measure the “platform-ness” of SASE/SSA/SSE solutions. SSA is GigaOm’s terms for the security models being promoted as SSE, SASE, ZTNA, and XDR along with networking capabilities, such as optimized routing and SD-WAN. The report assesses more than 20 vendor solutions, providing detailed writeups and recommendations for each. (Click here to download and read the report.)GigaOm’s Evaluation Guide for Technology Decision Makers | Report
Those hundreds of data points are then collapsed into the GigaOm Radar that provides a forward-looking perspective of the vendor offerings. GigaOm plots vendor solutions across a series of concentric rings, with those set closer to the center judged to be of higher overall value. Vendors are characterized based on their degree of convergence into a platform (feature vs. platform play) and their robustness (maturity vs. innovation). The length of the arrow indicates the predicted evolution over the coming 12-18 month:
The Findings: Platform Convergence is Not a Given in the SASE Market
The report found Cato SASE Cloud to be one of the few SSA platforms capable of addressing the networking and security needs for large enterprises, MSPs, and SMEs.
The Cato SASE Cloud provides outstanding enterprise-grade network performance and predictability worldwide by connecting sites, remote users, and cloud resources across the optimized Cato Global Private Backbone. Once connected, the Cato SSE 360 pillar of Cato SASE Cloud enforces granular corporate access policies on all applications — on-premises and in the cloud – and across all ports and protocols, protecting users against threats, and preventing sensitive data loss.
Of GigaOm’s key SSA Criteria, the Cato SASE Cloud was the only Leader to be ranked “Exceptional” in seven of eight categories:
- Defense in Depth
- Identity-Based Access
- Dynamic Segmentation
- Unified Threat Management
- ML-Powered Security
- Autonomous Network Security
- Integrated Solution
And the company found a similarly near-perfect score when it came to the core networking and network-based security capabilities comprising SSA solutions: SD-WAN, FWaaS, SWG, CASB, ZTNA, and NDR.
“Founded in 2015, Cato Networks was one of the first vendors to launch a global cloud-native service converging SD-WAN and security as a service,” says the report. “Developed in-house from the ground up, Cato SASE Cloud connects all enterprise network resources—including branch locations, cloud and physical data centers, and the hybrid workforce—within a secure, cloud-native service. Delivering low latency and predictable performance via a global private backbone”
To learn more, download the report.