Forrester’s Predictions for ZTNA in 2021

Feb 8, 2021

Forrester Research published a report on predictions of Asia Pacific technology and business developments in 2021 with some interesting food for thought. While some of this year’s predictions may come as a surprise, others are more expected.

Projections for 2021 – Emerging from the Crisis of 2020

In “Predictions 2021: Asia Pacific Will Lead The World Out Of COVID-19”, Forrester predicts that Asia will be the first to emerge from the current global crisis: “COVID-19 affected Asia Pacific first, and we expect the region will also emerge from the crisis first in 2021, before Europe and the US.” Part of this emergence will include businesses placing more of a reliance on new technologies. As businesses begin to rely more on using tech to build their companies and working remotely becomes more commonplace, more businesses will begin moving to cloud technologies.

“Without cloud apps, tools, and services, we could not have sent millions of workers home, maintained global supply chains, or shifted entire industry business models in a matter of weeks.”

–Cloud Computing Predictions 2021

In “Predictions 2021: Cloud Computing Powers Pandemic Recovery”, Forrester now predicts that “the global public cloud infrastructure market will grow 35% to $120 billion in 2021,” as cloud becomes more critical to businesses recovering from the pandemic. Changes in the market caused by the pandemic have led to businesses that prioritize customer satisfaction and fast service over efficiency and saving on cost, which is another factor in businesses shifting to a more cloud and network focused approach.

What Does This Mean for Businesses?

As companies switch to cloud adoption and remote working frameworks, security becomes a critical factor in protecting data and in client’s considerations when they choose to purchase software. According to Forrester’s prediction, the latest development in the new emphasis on security will lead to Asian Pacific governments taking a step they’ve been reluctant to take up to this point – adopting Zero Trust. As the report, “Predictions 2021: Asia Pacific”, states: “At least one government [in Asia Pacific] will embrace a Zero Trust cybersecurity framework.”

Asian Pacific countries have so far adopted a wait-and-see mentality when it comes to Zero Trust, but according to Forrester, with the advent of cloud technology, a greater acceptance of ZTNA will also emerge and that at the very least one regional government will demand firms convert their security and adopt NIST’s new standard for architecture.

“At least one [government in the region] will go further and require firms to transform their security services by adopting NIST’s new Zero Trust Architecture standard.” — Predictions 2021: Asia Pacific

Adapting to ZT

Firms in Asian Pacific countries have already begun adapting to ZT in a gradual fashion, without necessarily labeling it as ZT. Many companies have acknowledged and made use of the Zero Trust guiding principles of “never trust, always verify”, but full acceptance and acknowledgment remain rare. Forrester’s projections for the future of ZTNA seem to indicate that within the coming year we will see companies become more willing to take the plunge and accept something different.

 “Firms in APAC are adopting ZT in a piecemeal fashion, without necessarily naming it. Chase [Cunningham] and I [Jinan Budge] interviewed dozens of CISOs around the region who are doing elements of the framework such as identity and access management and microsegmentation.”

Source: Zero Trust Adoption Gains Traction In Asia Pacific, Not A Minute Too Soon, Forrester Research, October 2020

CISOs perceive the business benefits made available by adopting ZT and realize it will bring more vendors into the market to assist with architecture. The complexity of a security environment can be challenging, and up to 37% of C-level security decision-makers in APAC view it as such. Adopting ZT will allow firms to decrease the environmental complexity and rationalize security investments.

 “Thirty-seven percent of C-level security decision-makers in APAC view the complexity of their environment as a key challenge. ZT helps firms rationalize security investments and reduce complexity.”

Source: Zero Trust Adoption Gains Traction In Asia Pacific, Not A Minute Too Soon, Forrester Research, October 2020

Additionally, CISO’s are leveraging the framework in order to keep stakeholders united on common principles and develop collaboration. While the vendor community has often been accused of overhyping, in this case many are propelling businesses to greater awareness and understanding of the benefits of adopting ZT.

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In her role, Dafna leads all HR activities at Safe-T, including: partnering with management team to advance and support the company vision and strategy, developing strategic HR plans and policies (training, compensation and benefits, etc.), organizational and managers development, recruitment and welfare. Dafna brings to Safe-T more than 17 years of experience in various HR managerial roles, in global and complex organizations as well as in growing start-ups (such as SanDisk, Logic Industries and Mantis Vision), specializing in establishing and leading HR departments, initiating and building organizational development, according to company strategy, management consultant, talent management and recruitment. Dafna holds both an LLB and an MA in Labor Studies from Tel Aviv University. She is also a certified mediator and group facilitator.

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