Understanding the Key Component of SSE (Security Service Edge)

By Dan Evert, CCNP •  Updated: 11/01/22 •  5 min read

The administration of modern networks makes use of several dispersed technologies. As our networks get more complicated, so do the technologies we use with them. As a result, businesses have gradually shifted to the SASE paradigm, which stands for Security Access Service Edge. It helps enterprises offer secure cloud-based services to remote users.

As demand rose, the SASE model needed improvements to answer everyone’s needs. As a result, the SASE model has changed its branding and switched to a new and increased emphasis on Security Service Edge (SSE) programs. So, let’s familiarize ourselves with SSE and see how it helps businesses’ cybersecurity environment.

What is SSE?

SSE is a new concept in cybersecurity that was introduced by Gartner in 2021. It is a set of cloud-centric security tools that are interconnected and provide secure access to websites, SaaS apps, and private applications. A complete SSE solution gives businesses the security solutions they need to monitor and manage user activity. It also gives users safe remote access to the company resources they need.

Securing remote users and ensuring the security of the data and apps they access is important as the hybrid workforce continues to grow.

What is the difference between SSE and SASE?

With the description above, it might seem like SSE and SASE are very similar, which is not incorrect. One way to think of SSE is as a crucial component of SASE. SASE approaches safe and optimized access from a larger and more comprehensive perspective, focusing on both user experience optimization and protecting all access and traffic from threats.

Network and security are intertwined in contemporary architectural designs. Secure access to cloud apps and data centers has become essential for business connections as a result of digital transformation and the deployment of cloud infrastructure. However, many businesses still have separated IT and security departments with distinct needs and goals.

SSE gives security teams the ability to update their services and stack independently of the IT teams. As a result, companies can still rely on network services or the internet while lowering the attack surface. SSE eventually transitions to SASE once the company and IT team are ready.

Key components of SSE

SSE is made up of three key components: Secure Web Gateway, Cloud Access Security Broker, and Zero Trust Network Access. Each element adds a unique set of capabilities to the table, providing a strong security solution when combined.

SWG

SWG (Secure Web Gateway) serves as a checkpoint to keep unauthorized traffic out of a company’s network. An SWG establishes a connection between the user and the website while carrying out protective operations such as URL filtering, online visibility, harmful content inspection, and web access restrictions. This enables users to visit authorized, secure websites and safeguards them from web-based risks.

CASB

CASB (Cloud Access Security Broker) recognizes sensitive data in cloud applications and implements security regulations such as authentication and Single Sign On (SSO). Users are prevented from registering for and utilizing cloud services that are not permitted by an organization’s IT and security standards. By doing this, businesses can lessen the amount of shadow IT that compromises security and compliance.

ZTNA

Secure remote access is made possible by ZTNA (Zero Trust Network Access) without the need for a traditional VPN. In terms of SSE, backhauling using a VPN is less user-friendly than using ZTNA. Security for remote users is also enhanced due to a smaller attack surface.

What are the advantages of SSE?

Consolidation of cloud security

SSE’s primary benefit over conventional network security solutions is that it streamlines and harmonizes crucial security functions. All security services can be implemented and consolidated under one command, making security more effective while guaranteeing that all of your data is protected in the same uniform way.

Improved risk reduction

SSE allows integrated cybersecurity services to be provided from a cloud platform that is not dependent on a network and can follow user-to-app connections wherever they go. This reduces risk by removing the gaps that are frequently present between point products. SSE also enhances user and data visibility across all locations, independent of the channels used. Additionally, without the delay of manual IT management, SSE automatically enforces security upgrades throughout the cloud.

Cost-saving

Most SSE vendors provide clients with a fully cloud-delivered SSE service, and these assist IT in avoiding contract renewals for various network security services like VPN, firewalls, or secure web gateway hardware. The SSE service fees may occasionally be based on a subscription that is billed yearly per user. This makes it simple for IT to cut expenses while avoiding problems with high bandwidth charges or equipment administration.

More user satisfaction

The material is examined by SSE’s worldwide distribution when an end user connects to the SSE cloud. This helps improve performance and automatically decrease latency. The user experience is naturally enhanced by giving up VPNs and migrating to cloud-based applications.

Final words

SSE is a crucial component of the security architecture of an organization. Whether you run a small firm or an enterprise, having some kind of edge monitoring in place has evolved into an industry best practice. Therefore, To safeguard sensitive data, businesses must comprehend and use SSE. Despite the complexity, it is important to understand and use this security mechanism.

Dan Evert, CCNP

Dan Evert is a self proclaimed Router Jockey. Dan got heavily involved in networking right out of high school and has never looked back! Dan is giving back by working with high school students to get them involved and interested in Networking and Security.