Ask the Experts: How to Develop Global Network Security Strategy

Welcome to Ask the Experts, brought to you by In this video, Intelisys’ SVP Cloud Transformation Andrew Pryfogle talks about the complexities of global network and data security deployment with Masergy Communications’ Vice President of Security Operations Craig D’Abreo. Find out more about how to identify and deploy a network security strategy from Craig and the Masergy Communications team here:

Andrew: Hey, guys. We’re going to dive in to our next session here of Ask the Experts. We’re talking about network and data security. We’ve been looking at this in a bunch of different ways, but I wanted to bring in a voice from our esteemed faculty here at the University to talk to us about what are the implications of network security when I’m looking at a global deployment.
Let’s welcome to the call here, Craig D’Abreo, who’s the Vice President of Security Operations at Masergy Communications. Craig, welcome man.
Craig: Hey, Andrew. How are you?
Andrew: I’m doing great. Great to have you here. You’re a smart guy when it comes to network security and you work for a company, Masergy, which is known for global deployments and doing big global MPLS networks, hosted VoIP networks on top of that. I wanted to get your unique perspective on this, because I do think it’s unique.
When I’m looking at a global deployment, how does my network security strategy change? What complexities are introduced when I’m talking about a big multi-location international deployment?
Craig: That’s a great question, Andrew. In fact, we just completed a large global security deployment for a law firm, probably about a month, month and a half ago. It definitely came with quite a bit of challenges as you try to looking at the overall infrastructure layouts. When I start thinking about global deployment strategies, I think about three specific things—and this is how we approach this over time, too.
The first thing that is extremely important is scoping. You got to really understand all the different locations, the architecture behind the entire organization, to understand what are you truly trying to get out of it from a security deployment perspective. Each of the locations globally, what are you looking at from a footprint perspective? For example, do they have any kind of egress locations in terms of internet presence that you want to have monitored? Really try and get that is the first part.
The second part of it is the technology and how it really works within the infrastructure. When you look at technology, you also want to ensure that it’s not just local to that specific office. You want to be able to take that information back to a centralized system that allows you to look at the overall network throughout the global architecture and determine how do your reports look? Is it collecting everything at a centralized point?
Andrew: Got it. That makes sense. The visibility into the network performance, and the security threats and logs, and all that kind of stuff—the health, the security health of the network across all of those locations. You got to be able to bring that back to a central place that you can view it at.
Craig: You do. More importantly too, for example, a lot of these global deployments have large teams. You may have teams on the East Coast, or the West Coast, or Europe, or Asia—you want to make sure that the users of the technology have access to the appropriate information. For example, the U.S. users should have only access to the U.S. sites, and so forth.
Andrew: Interesting.
Craig: You want to make sure your technology actually supports that.
Andrew: Got it. Got it. That makes sense. That’s fantastic. This isn’t easy stuff. What would you say to our Sales Partners that are just now entering those types of conversations? Should they be tackling this on their own and trying to figure this out on their own, or are there resources available to them to help them do this?
Craig: I would highly recommend bringing in the expert security resources such as a solutions engineer. It truly helps you scope this whole thing out. Once again, it starts with scoping it. You want to make sure that the technology is there to support the infrastructure. And the third and final point is you want to make sure that the organization has enough of infrastructure to support the global deployment for security.
For example, is there enough plumbing there to bring all the logs and alerts back to the main location for processing?
Andrew: Got it.
Craig: Those are the three main things you want to solve.
Andrew: Plumbing, plumbing is important when it comes to networking. That’s for darn sure. You know what I love about this, Craig, is that so many of our Sales Partners—the ones that are really winning—they recognize that they may be, on their own, a small business—a handful of people—but they’ve got at their disposal an amazing team of really smart people that they can bring to bear to help design and win these types of deals. Masergy is a great example of that.
Guys, that’s Craig D’Abreo. He’s the Vice President of Security Operations at Masergy Communications. Check out Masergy’s learning center here and learn more about what they’re doing in this space. They can help you win these big deals.
Craig, hey. Thanks for your time, man. This was awesome stuff.
Craig: Thanks, Andrew. I appreciate it.
Andrew: All right, guys. Good selling.
Craig: Thanks.