Introducing Zero-Trust Access
Working remotely has been a reality for many knowledge workers for many years, enabled by the growth and development of the Internet, Wi-Fi connectivity, and mobile computing devices. Indeed, it was this trend that powered the evolution of virtual private network (VPN) technology to secure connections from anywhere other than the corporate LAN, with VPNs now constituting a multibillion-dollar business.
In recent years, Omdia has observed the emergence of a new class of technology, again focused on remote access to corporate assets but now encompassing the cloud environments where an increasing proportion of the application infrastructure resides and with the promise of more stringent control of that access. We call this type of technology Zero-Trust Access (ZTA).
I began work on a report, along with my colleague, Omdia associate analyst Rob Bamforth, at the end of 2019. I was interested in explaining the whys and wherefores of this emerging VPN replacement technology. That was before the coronavirus, even in its original Chinese iteration, was making the headlines, and long before it was billed as a global pandemic making a huge impact on world health and driving millions to self-isolate, many of them now working from home. It is a sad coincidence that our report appears at this time, giving it an added relevancy, albeit in tragic circumstances. The fact is, though, that the need for secure remote access technology has never been greater.