Survey: WAN Management and Security is a Complex Challenge

A recent survey by Versa Networks, a California-based SDN startup that was recently recognized in TMC‘s 2016 Cloud Computing awards, shows that companies are having difficulty managing and securing their Wide Area Networks (WANs). The full report, which can be found here, reveals that security is an issue at network branch locations in particular and that the usage of multiple vendors’ devices at each branch complicates the problem. However, fewer than one quarter of those companies had launched a project that attempted to simplify branch network management and security.

The survey, which featured 308 participants across a variety of industries and locations, had some clear findings. Two-thirds of those surveyed stated that six or more physical network and security devices are used at each branch in their network, usually from multiple vendors. This makes management difficult but has obvious impacts on security as well. When asked about the most challenging aspects of their company’s WAN management overall, participants specified device management as the number one challenge, with lowering security risks as a close second. Perhaps surprisingly, only twenty-four percent of those surveyed said that their company had an active project to simplify WAN management.

Versa Networks’ Global Survey of Network Professionals Infographic

Versa Networks attempts to fill in this gap by offering an integrated solution that combines SD-WAN and SD-Security. And based on the survey results, they have somewhat of an opening – 80 percent of the survey participants said they would prefer an integrated solution to a standalone enterprise product. Kelly Ahuja, the CEO of Versa, provided the following analysis of the survey results: “This survey shows that enterprises are focused on increasing agility, visibility and control of their wide-area networks, while reducing complexity and cost. Versa is focused on helping achieve those objectives through a software solution that integrates both SD-WAN and security.”

Key Takeaways:

– Companies are finding it difficult to manage and secure their Wide Area Networks (WANs). Often, the problem is exacerbated by having devices designed by multiple vendors.

– The complexity that these companies are facing, particularly at branch locations of the network, is making security more of a challenge. Despite this, most survey participants said their company does not yet have a project to simplify the process.

– Versa Networks offers an integrated solution, where SD-WAN and SD-Security are combined in a single product for enterprises.