Zero trust network access

Zero trust network access: Five best practices to follow

In today’s digitalized world, new breaches and risks emerge every second of every day. Cybercrimes have become a significant issue; one in five organizations witnessed cyber attacks like email frauds, social media frauds, banking frauds, ransomware attacks and cyber espionage. With cyber attacks evolving and increasing at a breakneck pace, the Zero Trust value solution plays a crucial role in preventing such security threats. Zero Trust Network Access is a network security solution that offers smooth and secure connectivity to remote users so they may access essential applications, data, and resources within the organization. Remote users are connected to the network quickly and securely without being exposed to the internet or data breaches. Additionally, it provides network security based on people and apps rather than only IP addresses, regardless of the user’s location or device.

According to research by Gartner, ZTNA adoption for numerous use cases is predicted to reach 60% of businesses and enterprises by 2023. A Zero Trust Security paradigm known as Zero Trust Network Access enables safe network access, establishes quick, encrypted connections, and seamlessly integrates servers and applications at the network level. Zero Trust is a security philosophy that is suitable for organizations of all sizes, being small, medium and large enterprises. Adoption of zero trust is a journey that organizations can take based on their current maturity and the level of adoption they want to achieve. 

Even though there are cyber security solutions present across, here are four best practices to follow while adopting Zero Trust on an individual level.

Trust No One

 It’s critical to create and deploy a security strategy that believes the network has been infiltrated and does not trust any users, whether they are internal or external to the organisation. No matter if the user is from an external network or the Local Area Network (LAN), it removes the assumption of trust. It offers verified and authenticated users with access to networks and applications. Therefore, ZTNA’s “trust no one” policy is one of the finest practises for assessing risks constantly and preventing unauthorised or compromised network access.

Using Multi Factor Authentication

Second factor authentication along with password creates an additional layer of security for users. Multi factor authentication can be in the form of OTP, T-OTP, Biometrics, or push notifications. Even if a password gets compromised, second factor authentication can create further protection from getting compromised.

Implementing Microsegmentation

With today’s rising cybersecurity and internet concerns, perimeter-based access control is ineffective and irrelevant. In order to deliver user verification and authentication to every network location and end-point, ZTNA’s Zero Trust Network design employs micro-segmentation. In order to assure data security by minimizing the size of the system attack surface, it instead sets distinct security perimeters in smaller zones with distinct access restrictions.

Granting Least Privilege Access

To reduce the danger of internal security breaches and surface attacks, you are not needed to provide every employee access to the full network. ZTNA ensures that each user or individual only has access to the relevant applications and corporate resources needed to carry out authorised duties. You should allow access at the “need-to-know” or least privilege level of access in accordance with the granular policies. You can reduce the risks of exposure and data breaches by restricting back-end services and access.

Implement ZTNA and VPNs side-by-side

Contractors, vendors, and business partners are examples of third-party organisations that are easy targets for hackers and cannot be relied upon because they may not be aware of, take organisational security rules seriously, or pay close attention to them.

Because these organisations don’t necessarily need full access to your network, you can utilise ZTNA and VPNs simultaneously. While your workers or internal users can access certain applications or places using VPNs, you can utilise ZTNA to give authorised access to third-party users. It promotes safety at work, ensures security, and reduces costs.

As organisations continue to improve their defence mechanism and evolve their tools, tactics, and procedures to evade cyber-attacks, cybercriminals are also adopting new methods to bypass advanced security systems. To fight against these advanced cyber attacks, zero Trust is a crucial security model based on maintaining strict access controls and not trusting anyone by default.

The article has been written by Sandip Kumar Panda, Co-Founder and CEO at Instasafe Technologies

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