The rise of the hybrid work model has empowered employees everywhere to choose their ideal work environment, including working from home offices, using personal devices on a train, and traveling in exotic locations. However, this new hybrid work freedom has also increased system complexity for IT teams responsible for supporting and securing hybrid work models — and traditional appliance-based security solutions do not provide the protection and scalability that hybrid work demands. This is why 58 percent of IT leaders are making edge security to protect users, apps, and data their top security priority.

In this blog post, we will examine why IT complexity is now one of the biggest barriers to security and how Citrix helps reduce that complexity with a single platform that layers the right security levels for all types of employees.

Why System Complexity is a Big IT Security Problem

The more your IT team has to manage, the more risk of human error and potential attack surfaces you have — and with them, higher potential costs. A 2021 IBM security report found the average cost of one data breach in organizations with a high level of system complexity was $2.15 million higher than organizations with low levels of system complexity. This $2.15 million is on top of the millions an average data breach already costs in business disruption and loss of reputation. And in addition to increasing your security risk, overly complex IT systems can introduce a frustrating and distracting employee experience that hurts productivity.

One of the most common security risks related to IT complexity is cloud misconfiguration. Cloud misconfiguration is haphazardly placing sensitive data and other information resources into cloud environments without protecting their confidentiality, integrity, or availability. The more cloud services you rely on, the more your sensitive data is spread around — making it vulnerable to bad actors or data loss.

How Traditional IT Security Solutions Fall Short

To prevent cloud misconfiguration or other complexity-related security risks, you must simplify system complexity wherever possible. However, as your ongoing digital transformation projects accelerate your journey to the cloud, it’s challenging to plan and configure your rapidly growing cloud infrastructure. This complexity gets worse if you adopt a patchwork of solutions from multiple vendors, as managing these siloed solutions in tandem makes IT oversight more difficult. In addition, managing this system complexity has only gotten harder in the hybrid work era as the number of distributed users and endpoints to protect keep increasing.

Unfortunately, traditional appliance-based models of IT security are no longer up to these challenges. For example, VPNs are one antiquated tool that IT needs to reconsider. Relying on VPNs and other siloed security tools cannot protect remote employees from new threats like ransomware or cloud misconfiguration. What’s more, these clumsy security appliances can also slow down the cloud and SaaS apps your distributed workforce needs to do their best work. This can lead employees to find insecure workarounds off your network, which not only increase your security risk but are also hard for IT to monitor.

How Citrix Reduces IT Complexity with Zero Trust and Network Security

What you need is a unified, secure access solution that adopts zero trust with adaptive access while bringing network security to the edge to protect data where it is most vulnerable. This is why we created Citrix Secure Private Access, which provides instant single sign-on (SSO) access to SaaS and web applications, granular and adaptive security policies, app protection policies, and web browser isolation in a cloud-delivered zero trust network access (ZTNA) solution.

While traditional VPN solutions require each user endpoint to provide managed network access and enforce static access control policies, Citrix Secure Private Access equips IT with adaptive security that makes it easy to monitor and secure BYO devices. This helps you choose the right security layers across your distributed workforce. The result secures your workforce, secures your access, and secures your apps and APIs, with benefits like:

  • Consolidated access to all internal and external apps, whether sanctioned or unsanctioned by IT, in a secure digital workspace
  • A secure and high-performing work environment for your hybrid workforce
  • Reduced risk across all apps, APIs, devices, and data from external and internal attacks
  • Minimized need to train IT on multiple security strategies and platforms or hire additional cyber security experts.

As you face zero-day threats from ransomware, malware, or other attacks, you can’t afford to let system complexity hinder your security. Learn why ESG’s recommended solution is adopting a unified workspace solution that enriches the employee experience, increases security, and improves app performance.