what is zero trust network access
- Cybersecurity

Zero Trust Network Access – How Does It Work?

What is zero trust network access, and how does it work? is covered in detail here

The business productivity of organizations with remote employees depends on secure access to services and data over the internet from any device and location. However, the internet can create several security risks and vulnerabilities that sabotage your organization’s security and productivity. Fortunately, Zero-trust network access (ZTNA) eliminates all these issues. Continue reading to find out how it works.

Zero-Trust Network Access

  • ZTNA uses identity-based authentication to build trust and provide access. In addition, it hides IP addresses and network locations. ZTNA adapts access based on specific applications at a given time, device, or location. To secure highly distributed IT environments, ZTNA provides security teams with improved and centralized flexibility.

Zero-trust network access is a concept or capability implemented differently by IT networking and security suppliers. As a part of the overall Secure Access Service Edge (SASE) architecture, ZTNA is exceedingly replacing the traditional VPN infrastructure.

How Does ZTNA Work?

  • Burgeoning organizations are shifting their priorities to adopt zero-trust security architecture. The strategy behind an adequate zero-trust infrastructure is zero-trust network access. When ZTNA is implemented, users get access to the specific applications and resources once they have been authenticated to the ZTNA service. ZTNA grants access to the users using an encrypted tunnel. This helps shield applications and IP addresses by adding an extra layer of security protection.

By relying on the same concept that prevents users from gaining access to other applications and services that they are not authorized to access, ZTNA acts very much like software-defined perimeters (SDPs). In addition, zero-trust network access also prevents lateral attacks. This is because even when intruders gain access, they will not be able to locate other services.

Principles Of ZTNA’s Remote Access

  • The attack surfaces created by network-centric solutions, including virtual private networks (VPNs) and firewalls, are liable to security breaches. On the other hand, ZTNA takes a different approach to providing safe and secure remote access to the internal application. The remote access provided by zero trust network access is based on the following four fundamental principles.

Application-Specific Access

  • ZTNA approach isolates network access from application access. As a result of this isolation, the risks, such as network infection through compromised devices, are reduced. ZTNA grants access to authorized users for specific applications only when the user has been authenticated.

Outbound-Only Connections

  • Zero trust network access makes outbound-only connections. In this way, ZTNA ensures that both application infrastructure and network stay invisible to unauthorized users. ZTNA effectively creates a darknet that makes the network impossible to find and prevents IPs from being exposed to the internet.

One-On-One Basis

  • Application access is granted on a one-on-one basis once the users are authorized. ZTNA’s native app segmentation ensures this. Rather than full access to the network, authorized users have access only to specific applications. The risk of lateral movement of viruses and other malware and overly permissive access is prevented by segmentation.

 User-To-Application Approach

  • zero trust network accessThe best thing about ZTNA is that it is designed on a user-to-application approach instead of a traditional network security approach. In this way, the internet becomes a corporate network that leverages end-to-end encrypted TLS micro-tunnels instead of MPLS, and the network becomes deemphasized.

The weaknesses of the traditional security models have been exacerbated during 2020 due to tremendous growth in the remote workforce. Businesses must adopt a holistic approach to network security, such as zero trust, incorporating different technology structures. Data breaches are reduced to a great extent by adding a layer of security in the form of a zero-trust network.

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