Putting the Pieces Together
In the end, one thing is clear: A cookie-cutter approach to zero trust is a recipe for failure. ZT is different for every business, and it’s constantly changing. Channel pros and consultants can serve as a valuable source of information and expertise as organizations sort through policies, procedures, and technologies en route to a comprehensive strategy. “Ultimately, everything must be interwoven into a framework that involves people, processes, and technology,” Slagle says.
When zero trust is used effectively, companies can finally evolve beyond monitoring security through a tangle of point solutions and relying on haphazard methods to detect threats. A zero-trust framework addresses the real-world risks associated with users, devices, applications, network access, and the context of data, making it possible to identify actual threats and respond with appropriate actions.
At that point, “it’s possible to elevate zero trust from a buzzword to a valuable resource,” Boles explains. Moreover, with a strong foundation in place, it’s possible to extend zero trust deeper into the organization as budgets, time, and resources permit. “An organization can finally evolve beyond the antiquated notion of protecting the perimeter, which no longer exists, and instead take a more granular and dynamic approach based on assets, permissions, and access that directly affect security,” Boles concludes.