What is Zero Trust Network Access?
How to Support Your Company’s Remote Workforce with Zero Trust
A Response to Digital Crime
The age of digital transformation has led to many opportunities for small and large companies to enhance their business operations. Employees are able to work from multiple locations at any point of the day by accessing a secure network of internal resources and data.
As convenient as it is for employees, it also gives hackers more opportunities to break into company networks and steal client information.
According to LinkedIn, 54% of IT professionals believe that remote workers pose a greater security risk than traditional workers. They advise putting additional software in place to protect employee devices and information.
With all this progress and uncertainty, it’s becoming more and more important for businesses to invest in cybersecurity methods to protect their valuable information. With the latest transition to Cloud storage and remote work, your employees must be able to join the company network and access internal information while also keeping it secure across users, networks and devices.
Virtual Private Networks (VPNs) have been the solution for creating secure access for these networks. The numbers show that 68% of American adults use a VPN for personal or work use.
The latest approach to secure network access is known as Zero Trust Network Access (ZTNA). This new standard is helping many companies stay compliant and avoid getting hacked.
Zero Trust: What it Does and How it Helps Your Company
Zero Trust is a virtual private network that encrypts all communication coming in and doesn’t trust anything else within the connection – this is unlike traditional VPNs that establish an external connection from your current location and device to the network and trusts everything in the network as a result.
Think of it like this: If you are working from home and establish a connection to the company network using your VPN, it will also connect all other devices in the house on the same connection, including your child’s Xbox. Which means theoretically, the Xbox now has access to company information.
With Zero Trust, the connection will only trust your one device that’s authorized to access the network. In doing so, you can obtain internal data without risking it.
Zero Trust is also more flexible with cloud data. It allows remote and mobile users who are already using the cloud on their personal devices to easily transfer over to the network without compromising security.
For small businesses and large enterprises, this can make a huge difference in your cybersecurity approach. By following the security of data in motion and preventing your network from trusting everything off the bat, you can protect your internal and client information and block hackers from accessing your data.
Who Needs Zero Trust Security?
Any business that deals with privacy and personal information can benefit from using Zero Trust as their cybersecurity approach. This can be large corporations with the government or your average hair salon that books appointments for their customers.
Some of the main industries that have begun incorporating Zero Trust into their compliance standards include retail sales, government contractors and businesses in the health care industry. Organizations dealing with an increasing demand for compliance requirements are also looking at ZTNA as a silver bullet solution.
These industries will likely include Zero Trust in their routine compliance assessments to make sure they are reaching ZTNA standards.
Benefits of Having a Zero Trust Network Environment
When you decide to transition your company’s network to include Zero Trust Network Access, you are providing benefits to both your internal operations and your clients.
1. Reduces Risk of Getting Hacked
A framework that follows Zero Trust will be more secure by offering direct, managed connections that will only give access to the company’s private information to authorized users – all while encrypting the communication.
This extra level of cybersecurity protection will deter hackers and make it much harder for them to gain access to your network.
Client data and company information will remain private and secure no matter where your employees decide to work or get into the network.
2. Establishes Credibility
Whether you’re working on government contracts or providing home services to your area, you want your customers to be able to trust you. Your business will be handling their personal information, which is a big deal.
When your network systems have Zero Trust secure access, you are letting your clients know that you take all necessary measures to protect their data.
By investing in Zero Trust, you are establishing yourself as a business that has top-notch cybersecurity and cares about its customers.
3. Encourages Employee Comfort
Post-2020 has seen a dramatic increase in remote work. 98% of remote workers would like to continue working remotely, and 32% of them want to at least maintain a flexible schedule. The reasoning is simple – employees enjoy the comfort of working from home.
With Zero Trust, companies can continue to let their employees work remotely without worrying about data breaches or security concerns. They can cater to their employee needs without sacrificing their network access.
Monitor Your Network System and Ward off Hackers
With the rise of cybercrime and the progression of work-from-home, Zero Trust is evolving as a response to people working remotely who need to keep their work environment secure against other potentially harmful devices.
When you decide to upgrade your cybersecurity approach to include Zero Trust Network Access, you are better protecting your private information from cyber attacks while also granting your employees flexibility to work from different locations.
Not sure how to do this?
In order to achieve Zero Trust compliance, IT companies provide consulting services that assess your current network environment and provide recommendations.
Networking Technologies + Support is a Managed IT Services company headquartered in Virginia that offers cybersecurity assessment and compliance services that can also test for Zero Trust. NTS can also provide the devices, firewalls and software systems you might need to reach secure access standards.
Maintaining a Zero Trust Network is a surefire way to protect your valuable data and improve your company’s overall cybersecurity posture.