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The Future of Network Security in China


Network Security in China: Traditionally, networks have been designed to maximize value, but this also means they are vulnerable to attackers who seek to subvert the network. This dynamic tension is an essential part of the network security puzzle.

Fortinet’s SASE solution combines SD-WAN, Zero Trust Access Network (ZTNA), Secure Web Gateway (SWG), and CASB into a unified service. It is a cloud-delivered and centrally managed solution.

The Greater Bay Area (GBA)

The Greater Bay Area is one of the largest urban areas in the world, comparable to New York City and Tokyo. It comprises nine megacities in Guangdong province, including Shenzhen, Hong Kong, and Macao, and two special administrative regions (SARs), with a population of 71.2 million (5% of China’s total). The GBA’s high living standards, low taxes, and rapid economic development have made it an attractive business location for companies worldwide.

The GBA’s massive population and network-challenged environment will demand advanced security solutions to protect data, apps, and devices, which must be accessible in both the cloud and on-premises. Fortinet is advancing its Universal SASE offering by expanding its global PoP network, accelerating performance with the FortiGate 120G SASE appliance, and enabling flexible consumption with FortiSASE on the cloud.

Fortinet delivers SASE networks in China, including networking and security capabilities, in a single platform. It will be the preferred solution for organizations that need consistent policies across all edge points. FortiSASE on the cloud converges cloud-delivered security – including secure web gateway, Cloud Access Security Broker, and firewall as a service – with networking through SD-WAN and universal zero trust network access.

Many vendors offer standalone networking or security products, but only some specialize in both, making it challenging to deliver consistent SASE. Moreover, the technologies involved in SASE are evolving fast and require a highly experienced vendor to provide upgrades and support.

China’s government

The Chinese government is a complex, multi-tiered structure with the Communist Party at its core. The Party is a ruling force embedded across layers of society and the economy, from local governments to state-owned enterprises to non-government organizations. To ensure its control, the CCP uses a wide variety of tools to silence dissent and restrict the movements of religious groups, environmental nonprofits, human rights activists, and lawyers. It also censors online political communication and controls private-sector economic activity.

In 2023, Fortinet (FTNT) introduced a unified SASE solution called FortiSASE. It was a huge change to the industry, as it integrated networking and security into one platform, delivering actionable intelligence for the network edge, endpoint, SaaS applications, IoT/OT devices, and branch offices. It also eliminated the need for multiple vendors, allowing organizations to implement a single SASE supported by a single management plane and unified agent.

Organizations that adopted the Fortinet SASE saw their deployments accelerate. It was because of the centralized management ethos and world-class security capabilities delivered. It allowed the SASE to reduce complexity, speeding up deployment and enabling enterprises to meet their security and business objectives. In addition, it helped bridge the skills gap for security professionals who were used to working with disaggregated solutions from different vendors.

China’s financial sector

CSOs have increasingly adopted Secure Access Service Edge (SASE), a cloud-delivered, integrated platform that consolidates networking and security capabilities to enhance network performance and security posture. It offers a secure web gateway (SWG), CASB, next-generation firewall, and zero trust network access (ZTNA). This approach allows enterprises to transition from the traditional data center security model and eliminates blind spots created by the proliferation of hybrid multi-cloud environments.

However, SASE platforms require a robust network infrastructure to deliver consistent security. A SASE solution should be deployed in a location that provides global coverage so that all key technologies can communicate consistently and seamlessly. Additionally, it should support a flexible consumption program that can accommodate varying refresh cycles.

SASE solution offers this extensive functionality. Its global SASE network covers 104 locations and enables customers to design their operational model flexibly without sacrificing security or user experience.

It recommends that enterprises assess multiple SASE vendors to determine the best fit for their organization. They are forming a joint network security team to identify and rank functionality requirements and options. Then, select a vendor that supports a unified management plan to ensure policy consistency across SWG, CASB, and NGFW. Finally, run a functional pilot to ensure the SASE solution will be effective in your environment.

China’s healthcare sector

The healthcare sector in China is one of the largest and fastest-growing industries. Driven by aging demographics, the sector is rapidly expanding and leveraging new technologies to meet rising demands for superior products & services. However, this surge also opens the door for attackers seeking to exploit various vulnerabilities.

As attackers become more sophisticated, IT teams are challenged to stay ahead of them. They must secure diverse environments, including hybrid multi-cloud environments across the edge, core, and cloud, with limited resources, expertise, and headcount. A single-vendor SASE solution can help reduce blind spots and deliver consistent security everywhere users connect.

SASE converges networking and security capabilities into a unified, cloud-delivered service that offers unified management, simplified deployment, and end-to-end DEM for secure access to private applications, SaaS apps, and the internet. SASE solutions also provide granular zero-trust access control for devices and data on the edge.

FTNT is well-positioned to address the growing demand for SASE. Its Universal SASE solution combines network, security, and edge computing capabilities into a unified cloud-delivered service – delivering a single-vendor solution for work-from-anywhere users that improves efficiency, provides consistent security, and accelerates business agility. The platform is powered by a single operating system (FortiOS), FortiGuard AI-powered security services, and a unified FortiClient agent. It also features a scalable and reliable SD-WAN that supports multiple connectivity modes.

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