Over the last few years, IT has undergone a tremendous transformation. Today, from infrastructure to applications to data — almost everything— is moving to cloud. Whether it is either the public or private cloud infrastructure, cloud technology has revolutionized the IT ecosystem. However, today this is the same thing is throwing questions globally about how to protect the data that is being stored there.
This emergence of cloud has also changed the way employees used to work; many feels, it has made a lot of people more careless about the security of their as well as the organisation’s data. You just can’t deny the fact that when an employee works outside of the corporate network, they don’t even bother to turn on the VPN and work. And this is where Secure Web Gateways comes into the scenario.
What Is A Secure Web Gateway?
A secure web gateway (SWG) basically refers to content-control software. When we say content control, it means that this particular software filters and controls content on the internet. This software basically prevents malicious internet traffic to move through the corporate network, ensuring that the company’s network is secured. Simply put, it basically delivers content that is relevant to work or doesn’t violet company’s policies to the user sitting behind the screen.
Over the past couple of years, SWG has become of the go-to tools for organisations across the world. It is not something that is very new — SWG has been in the space almost since the beginning of the Web. However, today it is more advanced, much more than just filtering content, and comes in both cloud and on-prem forms. However, there are instances that show that not every SWG is capable of preventing or mitigating malicious traffic and not every company knows how to make the most out of SWG.
In this article, we are going to have a deep look at some of the most critical points about Secure Web Gateways.
Things To Keep In Mind Before Opting For A SWG
You should have complete know-how about the web-related threats and vulnerabilities
This is the first and foremost thing every organisation should do. Companies need to understand the threats and vulnerabilities they are facing. They also need to make sure the path and source of the threat and what damage they are causing and could cause in the future.
When you have strong knowledge about what you are going to deal with, you plan better. And when you plan better, you come up with strong solutions. So, before evaluating or opting for a specific secure web gateway, you should know what is happening.
What is the measure you are already taking?
When you are done analysing the threats and the vulnerabilities, next is to take a look at the existing measures that you have taken already or the tools you have set up to deal with malicious traffic. Check each and every tool and take an in-depth look at the results that these tools are delivering.
Whether they are able to mitigate or eliminate the risk completely? Or at least to a great extent? Are the results good enough to keep your business safe and secure? Where the tool is lagging behind? Get answers to these questions and if you feel, that they are not working the way they were supposed to, then look for a top-notch SWG product that can solve the problems.
Do you have the infrastructure or resources to deploy one more security tool
You might feel a high level of need to deploy an SWG product in order to make your web security infrastructure stronger, but one simply can’t buy an SWG product and get it fit in — you have to make sure that you have the required infrastructure and resources to make the most out of the tool.
If you don’t have the resources and the infrastructure, check if you can set that up and how much it is going to cost. If it exceeds your budget, you can take a look at some of the cloud service providers. It is always considered to be good practice to have look at our existing resources before deploying an all-new tool.
Will the cloud work well with your existing infrastructure?
The cloud approach might eliminate on-prem challenges, but it has its own set of requirements. So, if you decide to opt for cloud infrastructure, make sure your existing processes and methods work well. Also, ensure that you have the required support for cloud-centric deployment. That is about the infrastructure.
Now, talking about the tools, when you deploy a cloud-based security tool, you have to see whether integrates with the existing on-prem tools. If you have the resources to overcome these challenges, then definitely a cloud-based SWG is a great option to eliminate cyber threats and malicious traffic from the corporate network.
What are the results you are looking for and Will the SWG product deliver it?
It is the last but one of the most important things to consider. You have to decide what problems you are looking to fix —kind of threats you are looking to detect and eliminate, kind of traffic you are looking to block etc. When you have a vision or a set of results that you are expecting, you can go with the evaluation of the SWG product and see whether that product has the capability to deliver the results. There is no point spending time and money on a product (even if it's top-notch) if it doesn’t deliver the desired results. Because, at the end of the day it is about the company’s data protection and cyber security infrastructure, which should always on the top of the priority list.
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