Cisco’s progress toward continuous trusted access continues with its next wave of innovations around security, network agility, observability, collaboration and sustainability.
Last month, after more than a two-year hiatus, the RSA Conference (RSAC) returned to San Francisco’s Moscone Center on June 6, drawing an estimated 20,000 cyber professionals for the four-day event. The following Monday, Presidio attended Cisco Live 2022 in Las Vegas.
Here are the top highlights and takeaways from our experience at the RSA Conference and Cisco Live 2022:
More security with less vendor lock-in
The latest Gartner research finds that 81% of organizations have adopted a multi-cloud strategy. As more organizations subscribe to cloud offerings for everything from hosted data centers to enterprise applications, the IT topology grows increasingly complex. To protect those environments, Cisco’s building the Cisco Security Cloud – a global, cloud-delivered, integrated platform that secures and connects organizations of all sizes. This cloud-native service will be a comprehensive, integrated set of services designed to protect users, devices and applications across the entire ecosystem.
The Cisco Security Cloud will provide an integrated experience for securely connecting people and devices everywhere to applications and data anywhere. With unified management, the open platform will provide threat prevention, detection, response, and remediation capabilities at scale. Cisco has been on the journey toward the Security Cloud for some time and is sharing additional progress with innovations across its security portfolio, delivering:
- Secure Access – Cisco is building solutions that enable true continuous trusted access by constantly verifying user and device identity, posture, vulnerabilities, and compromise indicators. It’s also introducing less intrusive risk-based authentication, including a patent-pending Wi-Fi fingerprint as a compelling location proxy without compromising user privacy.
- Secure Edge – Hybrid work opened many possibilities and brought about new complexities. Cisco+ Secure Connect Now bridges these worlds with the best of Cisco networking and security in a single secure access service edge (SASE) solution using client-based or client-less connectivity. This new offering addresses all major remote access use-cases that enterprise customers face today, including secure internet access and secure private access. Cisco+ Secure Connect Now is an as-a-service, cloud-managed solution available to customers via a subscription. It’s quick to deploy, globally available, scalable to 350,000 users in a single deployment and easy to manage, simplifying how organizations connect and protect users, things and applications wherever work happens.
- Secure Operations – Cisco released a new midrange firewall, the 3100 Series, designed to make hybrid work and Zero Trust practical while ensuring a solid return on investment. The Cisco Secure Firewall 3100 Series supports more end users than its predecessor (the 2100 Series) with up to 3x performance enhancements via a VPN. Users can also empower their employees with improved videoconferencing thanks to Secure Firewall’s application-based quality of service, delivering up to 3x inspected throughput with multithread traffic-handling technique. Furthermore, the Secure Firewall’s machine-learning encrypted visibility engine passively identifies threats and applications in encrypted traffic. In addition, the SNORT 3 multithreaded inspection engine boosts inspected throughput up to 300%. Plus, the Secure Firewall includes entitlement for Secure X, Cisco’s open extended detection and response (XDR) solution.
Getting hybrid work right
To power an inclusive future for all, we must get hybrid work right, but it’s becoming a more challenging task than initially expected. At Cisco Live, Todd Nightingale, EVP and GM of enterprise networking and cloud at Cisco, and Jeetu Patel, Cisco’s EVP and GM of security and collaboration, showed how purpose-built devices and Webex Control Hub integration with ThousandEyes can now turn your home into a micro branch capable of delivering enterprise-grade experiences. They also showcased Cisco Smart Workspaces, the latest offering from DNA Spaces, built for enterprises that want to provide the next generation of employee experience, safety, and productivity. It equips facilities, IT, HR and executive teams with tools to monitor real estate utilization and make data-driven decisions to promote space adoption and optimization.
For example, Cisco Smart Workspaces can transform flat floor plans into dynamic, interactive, highly intuitive 3D maps. The maps can be used in Webex boards and other digital signages, providing contextual awareness and helping users locate empty meeting rooms, desks and other vital points of interest.
Creating unified experiences
Todd Nightingale, EVP and GM of enterprise networking and cloud at Cisco, announced several innovations in Cisco’s continuing platform strategy. One of the biggest takeaways was that
Cisco Catalyst now works with Cisco Meraki, the industry’s simplest cloud management platform. Nightingale demoed how both simplify IT and provide unified experiences to users.
He also introduced the Cisco Nexus Cloud, a SaaS offering for cloud networking powered by the Cisco Intersight platform and ThousandEyes WAN Insights, a vital first step in Cisco’s vision of predictive networks.
Cisco also debuted AppDynamics Cloud, a new observability platform that cuts through the complexity of modern applications to give IT pros and solution providers a seamless, unified view of their cloud-native technology landscape.
Bringing the best of security and networking together
Cisco is also introducing simplification across the portfolio with the new unified Secure Client (formerly AnyConnect). Streamlining how administrators and users manage endpoints, half of Cisco Secure agents, including AnyConnect, Secure Endpoint, and Umbrella, will be unified by mid-year 2022, with additional agents to be added over time. This follows the new cloud-delivered Secure Firewall Management Center, which is enabled through the Cisco Defense Orchestrator and unifies cloud and on-premise firewall management. With visibility across ever-changing and global networks, you can manage modern applications and malware outbreaks in real-time.
For more Presidio highlights from Cisco Live, click here.