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Citrix Systems Inc. has shipped a new version of its SD-WAN solution that includes automated, API-level integration with Zscaler Inc.’s cloud security platform.
The updated capabilities allow organizations to synchronize location information with the Citrix SD-WAN management plane; establish IPsec tunnels between branches and security enforcement points for high-availability traffic inspection and threat prevention; and automatically apply controls to users and applications connecting to SaaS applications and services over the internet.
Citrix plans to provide similar automated configuration capabilities with vendors beyond Zscaler in the future, according to Chalan Aras, the Fort Lauderdale, Fla.-based company’s vice president for SD-WAN and intelligent traffic management.
“We recognize there are multiple great security offerings in the market, and we want to give our customers choice,” he says. “Over time you will see more and more of these emerge for this full automated experience.”
Citrix SD-WAN comes with a built-in firewall that allows organizations to accelerate performance by giving specific, authorized traffic streams a shortcut to their destination.
“The firewall allows users at an office location to exit to the internet without having to be backhauled to another major firewall in the data center,” Aras says. That feature is application aware, he adds, so administrators can apply it to traffic from specific software products.
“Experience optimization” functionality in the solution lets organizations route Microsoft application traffic to nearby points-of-presence in Microsoft’s network. “The benefit of that is that instead of traversing the internet across a large span, you immediately join the Microsoft network, and Microsoft spent billions in building a network that is high performance,” Aras notes.
A relatively familiar concern among large businesses, SD-WAN security is becoming increasingly relevant to SMBs as well thanks to exploding adoption of cloud-based solutions. “The more you are exposed to outside applications, the more you need to make sure that you remain secure in terms of bringing those applications into your enterprise and consuming those applications in a way that doesn’t jeopardize your security,” Aras says.
Citrix isn’t the only vendor to make news involving Zscaler at this year’s RSA Conference. Avast Business unveiled a secure web gateway product based on Zscaler technology at the show as well.
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