By Amir Kaushansky, Sr. Product Manager, Cloud Security
I really like the speed and flexibility of the cloud; now I have the ability to get any combination of compute power or storage I want without the need of cumbersome hardware procurement procedures. What used to take weeks or months to accomplish can now be achieved on-demand, thus ushering in a new era of network efficiency and agility. Today, I am excited to announce yet another milestone in that endeavor: simple and secure branch connectivity to Microsoft’s newly announced Azure Virtual WAN networking service.
When I think of cloud, the first thing that comes to mind is security. And one of the biggest issues when it comes to cloud security is secure access to all cloud services. This is especially true at branch and remote office locations which are under increasing pressure to directly connect to the cloud for a variety of reasons. Due to their remote location and limited on-site staff, deploying and managing connections across each branch office becomes a logistical nightmare.
This reminds me of an experience I had a few years ago while I was consulting for a small startup. This particular organization needed to run part of their corporate software locally and part in a popular public cloud. For the on-premises part, we had to wait four weeks just to get the correct hardware from the preferred vendor. Once we received the physical hardware, we then had to wait for an IT administrator to install all operating system and software dependencies. After two months of waiting, we were finally able to start the cloud integration.
However, building a connection to the cloud presented us with a host of additional challenges. So much so that we were forced to seek assistance from yet another company to establish VPN connectivity to the cloud working. It took over three months and several thousand dollars in additional fees paid out to this other company before we had it all up and running. After all that, everything worked great until the development team asked for a captive system which of course required another VPN connection. Here we go again!
Now, being a Product Manager in Check Point and working with Microsoft on Azure, I have the great fortune of making sure other organizations getting into the cloud will not suffer the same fate as I did. In fact, Check Point and Microsoft have enjoyed a rich and longstanding partnership jointly delivering innovative networking and security solutions. Check Point and Microsoft have joined forces again to enable zero-touch provisioning and automatic VPN connectivity of Check Point branch security gateways into the Azure Virtual WAN. Now organizations are able to greatly simplify their network connectivity for a variety of remote and branch office needs.
The joint solution automatically establishes a secure VPN tunnel into Azure Virtual WAN from any Check Point enabled branch location while allowing customers to leverage the Azure cloud backbone to route traffic over any of its regions across the globe. The result is an easy-to-use, easy-to deploy method for securely connecting branch and small office to Azure services.
As reliance on the cloud grows for even more business services, customers need turnkey solutions for their branch offices that are designed to be easy to deploy, use, and manage as well as provide high availability and auto-scalability. The combination of Check Point branch gateways and Azure Virtual WAN networking services delivers a simple yet elegant solution to help branch and small offices achieve:
- Simplified and automated large-scale connectivity
- Consistent network and security policy management
- Optimized routing and performance utilizing Microsoft’s global network
To learn how Check Point branch gateways enable zero-touch and automated connectivity to Azure Virtual WAN services, please visit Check Point Azure Virtual WAN solution page for more information.