How SD-WAN Optimizes Multicloud Performance and Security

Enterprises are looking for ways to optimize their multicloud environments. For many, the answer lies at the network level. Network teams are implementing software-defined wide area networking (SD-WAN) to address performance and security challenges and potentially reduce the cost of operating the WAN.

A report by Expert Market Research indicates that SD-WAN will continue to grow over the next five years, with a CAGR of more than 30%, due to the growing investment in cloud technology and the need for appropriate network infrastructure to support it. However, the traditional WAN infrastructure used in a multicloud setting tends to result in instability, latency, and congestion.

For companies investing in cloud solutions, multicloud makes sense for many of them because it avoids problems like vendor lock-in while allowing them to choose best-of-breed for each solution. It also introduces a level of flexibility that a single cloud doesn’t offer. 

SD-WAN Offers Pathway Flexibility and Potential Cost Savings

Some transmissions require the secure-but-pricey multi-protocol label switching (MPLS) that companies have traditionally used through the WAN, but with SD-WAN, there are additional options. For example, network teams can choose broadband Internet, 5G, or MPLS, setting a business policy that allows traffic to be routed according to the urgency of the transmission, the performance requirements of a particular cloud solution, or the security needs of the data.

Because MPLS tends to be more costly, companies can reserve it for uses such as video conferences that demand real-time connectivity. In contrast, email or recreational video use can be routed to broadband Internet.

Using a combination of pathways, SD-WAN enables network teams in a multicloud environment to manage the demands of bandwidth-hungry cloud solutions. However, SD-WAN providing cost savings can be tricky because the reality may be more of an approach that controls the increasingly sprawling cost of cloud solutions with steep bandwidth demands.

SD-WAN Improves Security for Multicloud

SD-WAN assists in securing a multicloud environment by improving visibility and control over the network. For example, if a potential breach is detected, network teams can isolate that network segment and allow other traffic to proceed uninhibited while addressing the threat.

SD-WAN is also a critical component of secure access service edge (SASE), which is an approach to security that seeks to address the eroding perimeter of the network. SASE uses a combination of tools, including a secure web gateway, cloud access security broker, and zero trust initiatives like multi-factor authentication.

There are additional benefits to choosing SD-WAN, such as its zero-touch provisioning, which allows network teams to assist and troubleshoot for branch locations without traveling to the site to resolve an issue. SD-WAN is also scalable, offering companies a way to future-proof their network infrastructure.

If your company is pursuing a multicloud strategy and encountering challenges like new security vulnerabilities and spiraling WAN costs, it may be an excellent time to consider SD-WAN. Contact us at One Connect for more information.