📚 Selecting Zero Trust Network Access for Business Growth
Traditional network architectures struggle with today’s pervasive threat environment and fading perimeters. Organizations need a VPN alternative that keeps sensitive resources secure while simplifying network management and improving the user experience. Twingate’s secure access solution, based on principles of Zero Trust Network Access (ZTNA), lets enterprises transition away from their VPN without disrupting their existing infrastructure.
Shifting to ZTNA requires a solution that replaces legacy VPN without disrupting large, complex networks. Businesses choose Twingate for scalable, automated provisioning and management of secure access control. Here is a quick introduction to Twingate’s solution and the selection criteria businesses use when modernizing secure access control.
Enterprises have been reluctant to adopt Zero Trust. Early examples created the impression that Zero Trust required a protracted — and expensive — re-engineering of corporate networks. Things have changed since those pioneering projects. Twingate’s software-based solution lets organizations quickly implement Zero Trust access controls without impacting their existing infrastructure.
Traditionally, access control was tightly bound to the physical network. Twingate decouples access control, making deployment and management much more straightforward. Changes to access rules do not propagate through routers and gateways. Similarly, changes in the network do not impact access rules. Twingate’s software-based approach creates a flexible network overlay that supports a large user base with diverse access needs. Protected resources could be on-premises or across the cloud, while users could be in the office or working remotely.
The Twingate architecture consists of proxies between protected resources and the firewall. Called Connectors, these proxies make resources invisible from any network, public or private. Client apps enforce all security policies at the network edge, and proxy protected traffic directly to authorized Connectors through encrypted tunnels.
Twingate streamlines the enterprise journey to Zero Trust Network Access. Twingate’s Client app explicitly verifies every access request and enforces least-privileged access policies before user devices connect to protected resources.
Twingate co-exists with established security systems. There is no need to rip and replace enterprise VPNs with Twingate. Enterprises can introduce Twingate Zero Trust in stages, starting with users of the most sensitive resources. More people stop using VPNs as the deployment expands, letting administrators remove unused gateways.
Despite VPN providers’ development efforts, these remote access solutions are based on a legacy architecture that does not work with modern networking. Cyber threats are pervasive and can strike at any time. Workforces and resources alike are less centralized thanks to modern cloud-based infrastructure. Legacy remote access solutions’ aging technology makes VPN-based access expensive, brittle, and unsecure.
Twingate’s modern approach to secure access addresses the many weaknesses of VPNs.
VPN gateways must be publicly discoverable for remote users to access them. Such visibility makes VPN gateways easy targets for cyberattacks. Twingate’s software-defined perimeters make protected resources invisible — even from a compromised network.
Business VPNs originally served as low-cost, site-to-site networks over the internet. Remote access VPNs use the same model. A user’s device becomes an extension of the protected network. As a result, compromised credentials or breached VPN gateways let hackers traverse the network undetected. Twingate controls access on a user-by-user, resource-by-resource basis without giving any user access to the underlying network.
VPN gateways concentrate remote traffic onto private networks even if that traffic is destined for the cloud. Twingate creates direct tunnels between each user and resource, letting users access cloud resources securely over the internet.
VPN vendors channel all user traffic, business-related or not, through their gateways by default, further reducing the private network’s performance. Twingate, on the other hand, uses split tunneling to route all non-essential traffic across the public internet.
Backhauling remote cloud access through a VPN gateway sends user traffic along a four-leg round trip, increasing latency and degrading the user experience. Twingate reduces latency by sending traffic on the most performant direct route.
VPN access to segmented networks improves security at the expense of cost and manageability. Each segment requires a dedicated VPN gateway which companies must configure and maintain. With Twingate, enterprises create software-defined network segments by deploying Connectors.
Twingate often gets the attention of DevOps teams who want to leverage automated configuration and deployment of Zero Trust access controls. Security, network, and IT Ops teams appreciate the ease of implementing ZTNA without disrupting the existing network architecture.
Twingate’s compatibility with corporate Infrastructure as Code workflows allows for fast deployments — customers have deployed Twingate globally within fifteen minutes.
These deployments, and Twingate’s management tools, work across all cloud environments and on-premises networks. IP allowlist rules let you extend your Identity Provider authentication to any SaaS application.
A single docker command deploys a Connector to virtual machines, databases, and other resources on enterprise cloud platforms. While simple to deploy manually, Twingate will not undermine DevSecOps productivity. Providers for Terraform and Pulumi let developers automate Twingate actions.
Since Twingate is network-independent, our Zero Trust access control system does not depend upon or affect an enterprise’s network infrastructure. Administrators do not need to reconfigure the network. Instead, a Twingate deployment creates a virtual, decentralized point-to-point network that automatically adjusts to any changes in the physical network.
Deploying multiple Connectors to the same subnet activates performance and reliability features. Twingate will automatically balance loads from incoming Clients across the Connectors. If one Connector stops responding, its Clients will failover to the other Connectors.
Twingate’s software approach lets enterprises create decentralized virtual networks that are more robust than their physical infrastructures. Connectors take micro-segmentation to the extreme by turning each resource into a virtual subnet with its own secure access policies.
Managing access for corporate workforces has become more complex. Hybrid work-from-home policies shift the balance between on-premises and remote users. Blended workforces introduce more third-party users into the access management equation.
Twingate ends the VPN-imposed distinction between remote and on-premises. Organizations can manage all users within a single solution, no matter where those users are. Twingate also simplifies the management of third-party users. Installing and running the transparent Client app requires no changes to a third-party device’s operating system.
Twingate lets administrators create strict, granular access control policies beyond password authentication.
Device posture: Twingate’s Client can monitor device postures such as firewall and antivirus software status. Integrations with endpoint security platforms like CrowdStrike support more advanced device posture checks.
Advanced authentication: Integrating enterprise Identity Provider solutions such as Okta adds Single Sign-On and Multi-Factor Authentication to anything Twingate protects. This protection extends to legacy technologies such as SSH and RDP.
DNS security: Twingate can intercept DNS requests and resolve them at the Connector, keeping any sensitive requests within an encrypted TLS tunnel. By doing this, Twingate can limit resource access to specific DNS entries. Any non-Twingate traffic can be routed to public DNS-over-HTTPS servers, keeping user DNS requests secure when they access the internet.
Twingate streamlines access administration by unifying all resources and users within a single system. Non-technical personnel can use a simple Twingate console to onboard and offboard a user or change access policies. Twingate’s APIs let more technical personnel automate access management. For example, administrators can programmatically onboard and offboard users without manual intervention.
A new feature leverages Twingate’s activity logs so administrators can monitor network status, troubleshoot errors, and identify which users access which resources. Alternatively, Twingate’s real-time APIs integrate with Security Information and Event Management (SIEM) platforms such as Splunk to enhance monitoring systems with granular user, device, and resource data.
Twingate’s modern Zero Trust Network Access solution gives organizations the simplicity and deployability needed to improve security and access where it’s needed most urgently. Over time, Twingate’s scalability and easy administration lets enterprises deploy Zero Trust to the entire organization without re-architecting their global networks.
Contact Twingate today for a demonstration and learn how our enterprise-ready Zero Trust solution can replace your legacy enterprise VPN....