Adopting Zero Trust to Ease Compliance

The growing number of privacy and compliance standards has heightened anxiety among many enterprise owners. Between PCI-DSS to HIPAA, the EU’s GDPR to Mexico’s Protection of Personal Data Law, and California’s Consumer Privacy Law (CCPA) to New York’s Personal Privacy Law, these standards have fought hard with stiff penalties for businesses that fail to adhere. The task of improving security policies and deploying technologies to maintain compliance requirements can be nothing less than remarkable, leaving companies lost about where to start their journey. Frequently, enterprises are turning to the zero trust framework to help expedite and ease their journey to compliance.


Zero-trust represents an essentially different model, one that assumes no user, device, or application, whether outside or even inside the network, can be considered safe and that each must be verified before being allowed access to network assets.

To start the zero trust journey, you need to include a strategy and utilize two essential capabilities.


First, you must perform strategic assessments to separate the critical or most appropriate assets and applications from the non-critical. All compliance standards now mention the value of segmenting/separating/isolating or segregating critical or relevant assets and workloads from ones that are not. By doing so, you can define the scope of the compliance process considerably, thereby reducing the amount of effort required.


Once you’ve set the baseline for determining critical versus non-critical elements, establishing the following capabilities will guarantee you have the essential tools at your disposal to accomplish zero trust success.


See: Visibility is important for real-time and historical viewing of all enterprise platforms through a single agnostic lens. To defend, validate, and manage compliance, it is crucial to have in-depth visibility that allows you to understand the complex nature of your critical/relevant assets and workloads. This visibility must be accessible not just in real-time; a historical view is just as necessary for reference or forensic analysis.


Enforce: Enforce in a granular and consistent fashion across all environments. Where visibility shows you what workflows are in-scope and your application dependencies, you also need a seamless way to implement policies in a granular manner at the process, user, and fully qualified domain name-level across all your platforms as well.


Once strategic decisions are made concerning the enterprise’s most significant components and visibility and enforcement capabilities are established, we can focus on using Forrester Research’s five steps of zero trust networking.


Identify Sensitive Data and Assets

Using visibility into the enterprise, you can easily map out your important assets, applications, and data. This enables you to limit the scope and resources required as outlined in the strategy above.


Map the Flows of Your Sensitive Data

With the right level of visibility, one can simply map application workflows in a granular fashion that involves associated users, fully qualified domains, and processes involved.


Architect Your Zero Trust Microperimeters

Now that we have increased visibility and mapped out the workflows, we can begin to segment these compliance-critical workflows easily at a granular level by implementing policies around them.


Continuously Control your Zero Trust Ecosystem With Security Analytics

Since we have real-time and historical visibility data we can then use the policies we designed to continue to monitor our policies and traffic flows.


Embrace Security Automation and Orchestration

This means as new workloads come online, the whole process becomes automated. This guarantees that you will remain compliant and that the effort will be with minimum manual moves, adds, changes, and deletes.


Source: Security Boulevard