Embracing Mobile-First for a Secure Office Anywhere

Shortly after the onset of the pandemic, Asavie — now part of Akamai — announced a partnership with Nokia’s Nuage Networks to enable the Finnish company to resell what is now Akamai Security and Personalization Services (SPS), a product designed to enable private network access for mobile devices. Coupled with the business and technology trends discussed below, there’s opportunity for service providers to address future work models with new services.

As organizations everywhere scrambled to respond to change this past year, digital transformation initiatives became a top priority. Most visible was the decentralization of work away from physical offices toward remote locations. “Office anywhere” took on new meaning as dining room tables became communal desks, kitchen counters turned into stand-up workstations, and the daily commute was to the living room couch.

These developments have made it clear that remote work is here to stay, and many business leaders have concluded that it’s a viable alternative to the traditional office. The CEO of Tata Consultancy Services believes working from home will be the new normal and that only 25% of employees will be needed in office at any given time by 2025. 

Industry analyst firms studying the issue concur. Forrester’s 2021 report The State of Remote Work deems remote work “essential” while putting forth a program that focuses on business growth, employee experience, and continuous business operations.

Physical challenges notwithstanding, employees who work on devices outside of a protected perimeter with inadequate security are causing organizations to reconsider their security postures. With threats on the rise, security is an acute challenge as the limits of legacy remote work solutions have become apparent. 

In particular, mobile devices at the intersection of remote work and digital transformation need to become first-class citizens on corporate networks. Everyone has a phone, and it’s increasingly used for myriad business tasks. This means granting mobile devices simple access and security protections just like laptops and PCs. Embracing the new reality of mobile-first can help organizations reshape their digital transformation initiatives to quickly acclimate to new working environments — today and in the future. 

Akamai and Nuage are partnering with service providers to address the increasing demand for remote connectivity, the continued reliance on legacy network technologies and data centers to support enterprise business applications, and the growing adoption of cloud-based services. There’s potential for providers to approach new and existing customers with differentiated services to offer better security, visibility, and performance for mobile device users.

“As organizations look to the future state of their enterprise network in a post-COVID-19 world, they’re increasingly realizing the importance of connectivity, especially in the wide area network. Applications that enterprises rely on are distributed, and in response to COVID-19, the users accessing those applications are also more distributed than ever. Enterprises are looking for ways to assure end-user and application experiences in these distributed environments,” said Brandon Butler, senior research analyst, Network Infrastructure at IDC, in the May 3, 2021, report Worldwide SD-WAN Infrastructure Market Shares, 2020: Growth Remains Strong as Market Evolutions Continue. “SD-WAN technology helps enterprises achieve next-generation edge network architectures, particularly as it relates to security natively integrated with their WAN management tools and enabling optimized access to cloud-based applications. IDC believes SD-WAN technology will be a key technology for enterprises as they look to build out their digital transformation journeys in 2021 and beyond.”

Our joint solution puts mobile on equal footing with the other devices people depend on to do their jobs. It’s clientless to ensure a productive user experience. There’s a local breakout to SaaS resources hosted on the internet and private network access to IT applications in enterprise data centers so that traffic takes the best path for an optimal user experience. Enterprises will be able to access a self-service portal and create a smart mobile network slice. Thousands of mobile devices can be provisioned in a few minutes.  

Together, we’ll work to enable a Branch of One, an office-anywhere experience that is designed to deliver secure, frictionless access to all types of business resources — with full mobility and at scale.  

*** This is a Security Bloggers Network syndicated blog from The Akamai Blog authored by Bruce Van Nice. Read the original post at: