1. Security – how do I permit the best connection for the employees while maintaining visibility into the traffic and security
  2. Speed – How do we ensure optimal performance connecting to multiple clouds
  3. SaaS Apps – What is the best way to utilize SaaS application in an enterprise environment
  4. Citrix SD-WAN – How does Citrix SD-WAN meet all of these needs.

Gartner has stated that 81% of public cloud users choose to adopt two or more providers. Whether they are trying to avoid vendor lock in or to be able to take advantage of “Best of breed” solutions, most large organizations are utilizing clouds from multiple vendors. When Software as a Service is included, the amount of data flowing to and from the cloud is growing every year. But how does this affect my employees? How does it affect my data? These are questions every enterprise is having to ask and be able to answer quickly with the adoption rates of cloud growing larger and faster every day.

The first major concern is or should be security. How do I keep my data and users safe? A quick glance at the Biggest Hacks and Data Breaches of 2019 shows us that information breaches are occurring more often. US Customs and Border Patrol lost 100,000 pictures of drivers and their license plates when a contractor was compromised. Microsoft, Fortnite, and Capital One find themselves on the list. Business Insider ranks Cloud-Data leakage as the second most prevalent cyber security threat. So, how do we permit our employees to do their jobs and still keep the data secure? What methods are there that can allow IT to monitor and secure the communications that the company needs to have occur? Ultimately, how do we make sure we are sharing the information we need to share with the right people?

We also need to ensure that we are able to maintain the speed of the connections our users are using. As we progress with technologies like IoT, AI, Machine Learning, etc. the amount of data we need to move from place to place is only going up. How do we get WAN connections to perform at the speeds we need? Establishing reliable, fast, and secure pathways to the cloud providers can prove to be an expensive undertaking. What if I could use normal internet connections, but still provide secure and reliable communication? SD-WAN offers the capability bond multiple connections together to ensure the fastest communication at the lowest cost. But how do we set up the networks? Is it possible we could provision this easily and still maintain the security we need?

Traditionally, traffic from remote office/ branch office locations was sent back to the main datacenter. With the increasing adoption of both cloud and SaaS, the amount of traffic bound for the internet is increasing and taxing not only the datacenter connection to the internet, but the bandwidth required from the WAN as well. In a hybrid multi-cloud world, wouldn’t it be faster to transfer the data to the closes Point of Presence for the provider, be it cloud datacenters like Azure or AWS or SaaS applications like G Suite, Office 365, or ServiceNow? The wide area network of the future needs to be dynamic and provide secure pathways to the data following the fastest means possible. But how do we direct the data to the target following the most reliable, secure, and fastest means possible?

Citrix SD-WAN offers answers to all of these questions. By provisioning secured overlay networks between all of your branches Citrix SD-WAN ensures all traffic is secured in transit. Citrix SD-WAN permits automated security working directly with Palo Alto Prisma as well as Zscaler and Symantec. Citrix doesn’t simply integrate with these products; they use APIs to synchronize with the management systems of these partners. Citrix SD-WAN offers a built in Stateful Firewall (ICSA Certified) to protect your branch offices from external attacks. When coupled with Citrix Analytics and Citrix Workspace, Citrix SD-WAN offers the fastest most secure and easiest to monitor SD-WAN solution available.

Citrix SD-WAN provides the speed needed in several innovative ways. While most SD-WAN products route over multiple connections, Citrix SD-WAN can utilize all the bandwidth of all links for streams. Citrix SD-WAN routes based on a per packet basis and a best one way time (BOWT) so you stream could go out on MPLS and return on Cable Internet. Additionally, Citrix SD-WAN offers the ability to send packets down every path for highly important traffic like Video and Voice. The interruption of one link does not stop the stream. Citrix SD-WAN can failover from one link to the other in under 200 ms without interruption. Citrix SD-WAN can have integrated LTE instead of requiring an external device. Citrix SD-WAN will also use LTE as a link of last resort, minimizing the cost of having LTE on the device.

Cloud connectivity is available for all major cloud platforms with Citrix SD-WAN. In fact, automated provisioning is available on Azure. Citrix also offers a direct on-ramp to the Azure Virtual WAN for those wanting to leverage the Microsoft global network as their backbone. Citrix SD-WAN Virtual Appliances are available on Azure and GCP. When it comes to SaaS applications Citrix SD-WAN recognizes an industry leading 4500+ applications and offers break out capability directly to SaaS applications. For Teams and Skype, this can mean best point of connection for the call, best point of connection for video, and best point of connection for files and collaboration. This could mean packets heading in three different directions. Citrix SD-WAN was one of the first to qualify with Microsoft as “Works with Office 365”. This optimization puts the majority of the world within 30ms of access from the Office 365 front doors. The session breakout capability permits IT to allow SaaS applications and traffic bound to the cloud to go directly from the branch, while requiring all remaining traffic to backhaul to the data center as usual.

For more information on the Citrix SD-WAN solution, feel free to reach out to Conversant Group.

You can find more information here as well

SD-WAN for Office 365 Video

Blog about Microsoft Office 365 Connectivity Guidelines

SD-WAN for Office 365 Experience Video

Citrix SD-WAN Security

Maintain business continuity with a high-performance SD-WAN

Improve Application Performance at the branch