Cisco Meraki/Microsoft Azure support the transition to cloud
The announcement made by Cisco Meraki reports its collaboration with Microsoft to support and simplify the process of moving workloads to the cloud.
As the number of organisations shifting their workloads into cloud environments, Cisco highlights the importance of having secure and optimised access to business-critical resources.
“As customer use of multi-cloud environments continues to increase, providing secure and optimised access to business-critical resources is more important than ever,” commented Lawrence Huang, VP of Product Management, Cisco Meraki.
Due to the complexity of establishing and maintaining communication between cloud hosted resources, Cisco and Microsoft aim to support and simplify this process with their collaborative efforts.
“Today’s announcement underscores our commitment to deliver solutions that allow secure and optimal access to workloads in multiple clouds with recognised leaders like Microsoft. Through this collaboration, customers can securely connect to the Microsoft Azure Virtual WAN service, with the signature simplicity they have come to expect from Cisco Meraki,” added Huang.
Cisco will provide its automated Cisco SD-WAN secure connectivity from its Cisco Meraki MX appliances directly to the Azure Virtual WAN service. This new capability will help customers optimise their branch to Azure connectivity irregardless of their location.
“Organisations are increasingly looking to adopt Microsoft’s Azure Virtual WAN service as a way to connect their branch SD-WAN appliances to our global network for optimal access to Azure resources. With Cisco SD-WAN powered by Cisco Meraki, we can make connectivity a seamless experience for our customers,” commented Reshmi Yandapalli, principal product manager, Microsoft Corp.
Key benefits highlighted by Cisco and Microsoft as a result of the companies’ collaboration include: simplicity, easy to use, security and change management capabilities.
Check Point: Securing the future of enterprise IT
Cybersecurity solutions provider Check Point was founded in 1993 with a mission to secure ‘everything,’ and that includes the cloud. Conscious that nothing remains static in the digital world, the company prides itself on an ability to integrate new technology with its solutions. Across almost three decades in operation, Check Point, with its team of over 3,500 experts, has become adept at protecting networks, endpoints, mobile, IoT, and cloud.
“The pandemic has been somewhat of an accelerator in the evolution of cyber risk,” explains Erez Yarkoni, Global VP for Cloud Business. “We had remote workers and cloud adoption a long time beforehand, but now the volume and surface area is far greater.” Formerly a CIO for several big-name telcos before joining Check Point in 2019, Yarkoni considers the cloud to be “part of [his] heritage” and one of modern IT’s most valuable tools.
Check Point has three important ‘product families’, Quantum, CloudGuard, and Harmony, with each one providing another layer of holistic IT protection:
- Quantum: secures enterprise networks from sophisticated cyber attacks
- CloudGuard: acts as a scalable and unified cloud-native security platform for the protection of any cloud
- Harmony: protects remote users and devices from cyber threats that might compromise organisational data
However, more than just providing security, Yarkoni emphasises the need for software to be proactive and minimise the possibility of threats in the first instance. This is something Check Point assuredly delivers, “the industry recognises that preventing, not just detecting, is crucial. Check Point has one platform that gives customers the end-to-end cover they need; they don't have to go anywhere else. That level of threat prevention capability is core to our DNA and across all three product lines.”
In many ways, Check Point’s solutions’ capabilities have actually converged to meet the exact working requirements of contemporary enterprise IT. As more companies embark on their own digital transformation journeys in the wake of COVID-19, the inevitability of unforeseen threats increases, which also makes forming security-based partnerships essential. Healthcare of Ontario Pension Plan (HOOPP) sought out Check Point for this very reason when it was in the process of selecting Microsoft Azure as its cloud provider. “Let's be clear: Azure is a secure cloud, but when you operate in a cloud you need several layers of security and governance to prevent mistakes from becoming risks,” Yarkoni clarifies.
The partnership is a distinctly three-way split, with each bringing its own core expertise and competencies. More than that, Check Point, HOOPP and Microsoft are all invested in deepening their understanding of each other at an engineering and developmental level. “Both of our organisations (Check Point and Microsoft) are customer-obsessed: we look at the problem from the eyes of the customer and ask, ‘Are we creating value?’” That kind of focus is proving to be invaluable in the digital era, when the challenges and threats of tomorrow remain unpredictable. In this climate, only the best protected will survive and Check Point is standing by, ready to help.
“HOOPP is an amazing organisation,” concludes Yarkoni. “For us to be successful with a customer and be selected as a partner is actually a badge of honor. It says, ‘We passed a very intense and in-depth inspection by very smart people,’ and for me that’s the best thing about working with organisations like HOOPP.”