Join us at Netskope’s SASE Summit, coming to a city near you! Register now.

  • Security Service Edge Products

    Protect against advanced and cloud-enabled threats and safeguard data across all vectors.

  • Borderless SD-WAN

    Confidently provide secure, high-performance access to every remote user, device, site, and cloud.

  • Platform

    Unrivaled visibility and real-time data and threat protection on the world's largest security private cloud.

The platform of the future is Netskope

Intelligent Security Service Edge (SSE), Cloud Access Security Broker (CASB), Cloud Firewall, Next Generation Secure Web Gateway (SWG), and Private Access for ZTNA built natively into a single solution to help every business on its journey to Secure Access Service Edge (SASE) architecture.

Go to Products Overview
Netskope video
Borderless SD-WAN: Ushering in the New Era of Borderless Enterprise

Netskope Borderless SD-WAN offers an architecture that converges zero trust principles and assured application performance to provide unprecedented secure, high-performance connectivity for every site, cloud, remote user, and IoT device.

Read the article
Borderless SD-WAN
Netskope delivers a modern cloud security stack, with unified capabilities for data and threat protection, plus secure private access.

Explore our platform
Birds eye view metropolitan city
Make the move to market-leading cloud security services with minimal latency and high reliability.

Learn about NewEdge
Lighted highway through mountainside switchbacks
Safely enable the use of generative AI applications with application access control, real-time user coaching, and best-in-class data protection.

Learn how we secure generative AI use
Safely Enable ChatGPT and Generative AI
Zero trust solutions for SSE and SASE deployments

Learn about Zero Trust
Boat driving through open sea
Netskope enables a safe, cloud-smart, and fast journey to adopt cloud services, apps, and public cloud infrastructure.

Learn about Industry Solutions
Wind turbines along cliffside
  • Our Customers

    Netskope serves more than 2,000 customers worldwide including more than 25 of the Fortune 100

  • Customer Solutions

    We are here for you and with you every step of the way, ensuring your success with Netskope.

  • Training and Certification

    Netskope training will help you become a cloud security expert.

We help our customers to be Ready for Anything

See our Customers
Woman smiling with glasses looking out window
Netskope’s talented and experienced Professional Services team provides a prescriptive approach to your successful implementation.

Learn about Professional Services
Netskope Professional Services
Secure your digital transformation journey and make the most of your cloud, web, and private applications with Netskope training.

Learn about Training and Certifications
Group of young professionals working
  • Resources

    Learn more about how Netskope can help you secure your journey to the cloud.

  • Blog

    Learn how Netskope enables security and networking transformation through security service edge (SSE).

  • Events & Workshops

    Stay ahead of the latest security trends and connect with your peers.

  • Security Defined

    Everything you need to know in our cybersecurity encyclopedia.

Security Visionaries Podcast

Bonus Episode 2: The Magic Quadrant for SSE and Getting SASE Right
Mike and Steve discuss the Gartner® Magic Quadrant™ for Security Service Edge (SSE), Netskope’s positioning, and how the current economic climate will impact the SASE journey.

Play the podcast
Bonus Episode 2: The Magic Quadrant for SSE and Getting SASE Right
Latest Blogs

How Netskope can enable the Zero Trust and SASE journey through security service edge (SSE) capabilities.

Read the blog
Sunrise and cloudy sky
Netskope AWS Immersion Day World Tour 2023

Netskope has developed a variety of hands-on labs, workshops, in-depth webinars and demos to educate and assist AWS customers in the usage and deployment of Netskope products.

Learn about AWS Immersion Day
AWS Partner
What is Security Service Edge?

Explore the security side of SASE, the future of network and protection in the cloud.

Learn about Security Service Edge
Four-way roundabout
  • Company

    We help you stay ahead of cloud, data, and network security challenges.

  • Why Netskope

    Cloud transformation and work from anywhere have changed how security needs to work.

  • Leadership

    Our leadership team is fiercely committed to doing everything it takes to make our customers successful.

  • Partners

    We partner with security leaders to help you secure your journey to the cloud.

Netskope enables the future of work.

Find out more
Curvy road through wooded area
Highest in Execution. Furthest in Vision.

Netskope recognized as a Leader in the 2023 Gartner® Magic Quadrant™ for Security Service Edge.

Get the report
Netskope recognized as a Leader in the 2023 Gartner® Magic Quadrant™ for Security Service Edge.
Thinkers, builders, dreamers, innovators. Together, we deliver cutting-edge cloud security solutions to help our customers protect their data and people.

Meet our team
Group of hikers scaling a snowy mountain
Netskope’s partner-centric go-to-market strategy enables our partners to maximize their growth and profitability while transforming enterprise security.

Learn about Netskope Partners
Group of diverse young professionals smiling

Breaking Out of the NOC Box

Jul 06 2021

When did you first see a network operations center (NOC)? 

For me, it was 1983 at BBN in Cambridge. With some whiteboards, a few terminals, and a handful of chairs, it was modest compared to ones I’ve seen since–but it was also the NOC for the whole internet at the time. Even then, that significance made it a pretty cool place.  Of course, these days the idea of a NOC for the whole internet is mostly a quaint anachronism; today’s internet is too complex, both technically and politically, for a single NOC to manage. It would be a mistake to think about today’s internet in terms of that NOC. 

I’ve been thinking about that first NOC because it seems like some corporate networking teams are trapped in a kind of “NOC box.” The NOC box happens when a networking team sees their network primarily through the lens of an efficient and effective NOC, where staff focus on the connections they will create among the various pieces of hardware within company locations. These behaviors are understandable: for decades, these teams have successfully run tightly controlled and physically connected systems. Over time, those networks became more and more critical to the business. But that era is over—or, at least, the trend is now moving in the opposite direction. Now, critical corporate workloads are rapidly moving offsite, accessible via cloud applications. 

But not everything needs to change. Clearly, the networks within physical office locations must function properly. These are—and will remain—crucial objectives for a networking team tasked with keeping operations running, uptime steady, and user experience agreeable. 

What’s changing, though, is that the traditional, on-premises NOC responsibilities are no longer all that networking teams need to be thinking about. In a lot of companies, the workloads completed within the business’ four walls are no longer the main event and haven’t been for a while now. Users at every level of the organization are relying on software-as-a-service (SaaS) and cloud infrastructure applications to do the core elements of their jobs, with on-prem systems taking a back seat. 

How should networking teams best adapt to this paradigm shift? 

In the typical company, people up and down the organizational chart are currently underestimating the extent to which their business has moved off-premises. The pandemic year has forced many businesses to let employees work from anywhere and has rewarded those that already prioritized mobile and cloud access capabilities.

Still, although moving workloads into the cloud is no longer a radical concept, it can be intimidating. “Cloud,” to some, is an intellectually respectable way of saying you don’t know what’s happening somewhere. In this case, it means that you no longer have control over—and maybe even don’t understand—what is happening at some stage of your workloads. That’s not an easy or natural change to make. 

CIOs who are leading the way to the new paradigm, rather than resisting the inevitable, are setting the tone for their networking teams’ transition. Networking is not just about “the network” or even “network infrastructure and operations.” Instead, it’s about connectivity and user experience. 

To the degree that connectivity requires MPLS, switching, routing, or WiFi, those topics still fall within the networking team’s purview. But the core mission needs to be connecting individuals and ensuring that those individuals can stay productive. Corporate networking professionals need to dedicate their time and energy to connecting each of the company’s users with the applications, data, and services they need to accomplish the company’s mission. The exact location where those applications, data, and services reside is irrelevant to the question of who is responsible for providing connectivity.

It’s a fundamental shift: the transition tends to be easier in industries where competitors have already embraced this new reality. The risk calculation then becomes, “Are we in trouble if we don’t do this?” (Yes.)

Tightly integrate networking and security 

But wait, there’s more. One of the most challenging aspects of the shift just mentioned is that another shift in perspective must take place alongside it: deeper networking integration with security expertise. By definition, shifting workloads off-premises means moving them outside company (on-premises) firewalls. Security is more complex in this environment. Strategies for protecting cloud-based data and applications cannot be just an afterthought, or worse, some other team’s responsibility. Instead, they must be a key consideration early on in network design and build. A hard-learned lesson in computer systems is that security is more effective when designed in, not bolted on later.

Security issues arise wherever the organization’s data goes; and however secure the data may be in some location right now, someone will want it to go elsewhere. Because of this shared destiny, it makes sense for the networking team to include a security expert and for the security team to likewise have a networking expert on staff. Some organizations may achieve this via a “hostage swap,” where the two teams literally exchange members. Both teams also need to consider fluency in the cloud whenever they’re hiring. Better yet is to actually integrate the teams—embedding combined security and networking expertise into projects, instead of trying to direct individual networking or security teams to learn the other side’s perspective in hopes of achieving balance. 

Networking and security professionals alike should view security from the user level. They will increasingly need to work together to figure out how to securely connect the organization’s users with the applications and services they need. In many organizations, this will require a zero-trust approach: each user must be validated as legitimate and authorized to access each specific application or other resources, instead of making broad inside/outside, safe/unsafe network-level decisions. 

Such an integrated approach is unlikely to emerge from separate networking and security silos. The IT transformation that 2020 accelerated has emphasized something IT leaders have known, conceptually, for years: Collaboration between, and even convergence of, the two teams will be key to the new networking paradigm that breaks out of the NOC box.

This article was originally published at IT ProPortal

author image
Mark Day
Mark Day brings a diverse background to his role at Netskope, where he combines his interests in competitive analysis and technology strategy. He is author of the book Bits to Bitcoin: How Our Digital Stuff Works. He has more than thirty patented inventions, and has taught at both MIT and Harvard.