Cybersecurity Mesh: what it is and why you need it

The nature of a orient oneself is that it grows steadily enough to attract the attention of the general public or a specific audience. Well, for better or worse, cybersecurity professionals, experts, and analysts are noticing disturbing trends in malicious cyberattack activity, trends that don’t seem to be going away anytime soon:

  • Extension of attack surfaces: An organization’s attack surface will only continue to increase due to the corresponding increase in the use of digital systems and hybrid work environments: 60% of workers are remote and 18% of users will not return. not in the office.
  • Ransomware : Although ransomware is not a new trend, the volume, cost and impact continue to grow. Last year alone, there were 700 million attempted ransomware attacks in 2021 (up 134% from 2020).
  • Policy Changes: There is an increase in security and privacy regulatory requirements, such as the Cyber ​​Incident Reporting for Critical Infrastructure Actwhich is a direct result of the increasing activity of malicious cyberattacks.
  • Supply chain risk: The biggest cyberattacks of 2021 occurred at scale in supply chain and critical infrastructure operations, reflecting the major and growing risks supply chain organizations face.
  • Ongoing attacks on identities: Identity attacks and credential compromise and misuse continue to be a common attack vector, with a particular focus on privileged credentials. Attackers are now actively targeting the IAM infrastructure itself.

Given all of this, Gartner predicted that by 2025, a single, centralized cybersecurity function will not be agile enough to meet the needs of a digital organization.

These trends are growing exponentially, showing a profitable and successful year for hackers and cybercriminals. But what isn’t reflected in this data are the solutions designed to combat these threats and the trends that are pointing us towards a safer future and against threats. Let’s dive into one of the most popular cybersecurity trends of 2022: cybersecurity mesh.

Cybersecurity mesh

The cybersecurity mesh, or cybersecurity mesh architecture, enables anyone or anything to securely access and use any digital asset, anywhere, and better defend the organization against threats from security and sophisticated attackers. Digital assets (and people like employees and remote vendors) are increasingly located outside of the office, forcing organizations to rethink their approach to security controls. The perimeter defense strategy that shaped traditional approaches to cybersecurity is, for all intents and purposes, gone. Cybersecurity Mesh Architecture helps provide a common, integrated security structure and posture to secure all assets, whether they are on-premises, in data centers, or in the cloud. It is tailored with interoperable technology that can integrate and work with other security tools to leverage information, analyze data, and instinctively adapt and react to access-related threats and activities.

Examples of cybersecurity mesh

Cybersecurity mesh may sound like a great concept, but how can you realistically implement it into your security structure? We can look at several challenges that organizations face to see how cybersecurity mesh practices can strengthen security controls.

Example 1: silo technology

  • The challenge: Attackers don’t think in silos, but companies often deploy security and identity solutions in silos. The challenge with siled legacy security tools is their reliance on their own data analysis; few tools from different vendors actually interact with each other to share security information and trigger.
  • The cybersecurity mesh approach: Rather than all security tools operating in a silo, a cybersecurity mesh allows tools to interact, share and exploit security intelligence. The Cybersecurity Mesh Architecture creates the foundation for these tools to not only be loosely merged, but to truly integrate and share security data and analytics to create a holistic view of security intelligence and create the ability to trigger actions in multiple systems.
  • How to implement: Identify opportunities for integration and interoperability within your existing security stack, as well as when evaluating new solutions. Prioritize new security solutions that enable this interoperability with robust APIs.

Example 2: Identities, Access Points, and Decentralized Assets

  • The challenge: As we have already mentioned, the “traditional” perimeter has become more fragmented and has practically disappeared. Many applications and data no longer reside in the corporate-owned data center, and users access cloud-based applications from anywhere. Traditional perimeter security is no longer an effective form of access control.
  • The cybersecurity mesh approach: When assets are located everywhere and access can occur from anywhere, identity and context have become the ultimate source of control. The cybersecurity mesh creates a distributed identity fabric that can support identities from multiple locations. This can provide features such as directory services, adaptive access, decentralized identity management, and identity verification.
  • How to implement: Move away from VPN access to more controlled access zero trust network access (ZTNA) integrated with an access management tool. Implement multi-factor authentication (MFA) with adaptive processes to verify identities.

Example 3: Scattered Access Policy

  • The challenge: Many organizations are adopting a multi-cloud strategy and need a consolidated security approach. According to several studies, organizations tend to consume services from multiple cloud providers. Because each cloud provider supports a different set of access policies, it’s difficult to create a consistent security posture across cloud providers.
  • The cybersecurity mesh approach: The cybersecurity mesh architecture requires centralized policy management. Traditionally, most security tools make their own decisions; you define policies that are configured only in the tools themselves – hence security tools operate in a silo. The cybersecurity mesh uses flexible security tools that separate decision making (policy) from decision enforcement. A distributed architecture decouples policy enforcement from protected assets.
  • How to implement: Centralized policies can be created with consolidated dashboards, which provide complete and comprehensive views of policy across the security ecosystem. This gives your team a greater opportunity to respond quickly and effectively to security incidents, such as users violating policy.

Overall, the cybersecurity mesh promotes cohesion across all security technologies and creates a “mesh” of security policies that govern, control, and monitor all user access to protect highly sensitive digital assets and identities. . Cybercrime trends show a rapid and more sophisticated increase in cybersecurity threats. But trendy cybersecurity efforts like mesh can prepare you for what lies ahead.

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