Software-defined WAN technology has become increasingly popular as more organizations turn to cloud-based applications to manage their business operations. The benefits of software-defined WAN technology have driven its adoption by many far-flung operations for better security, reduced costs, time-savings, and more.
A key advantage of software-defined WAN technology is its cost-effectiveness. While a traditional WAN model requires organizations to install servers and routers in remote offices so that traffic can be backhauled to a centralized data center, a software-defined WAN does not require additional hardware installation. Backhauling data from remote offices to the hub via MPLS connections is also more expensive than using wireless links or internet broadband. Software-defined WAN also improves the cybersecurity of an organization’s network, helping to reduce the risk of major data breaches and their associated costs.
Software-defined WAN simplifies the management of network traffic and how it is directed across the network. With MPLS networking, data from a branch office must be returned to the hub so that it can be inspected for security purposes. Backhauling of data can reduce the performance of applications and impact the organization’s productivity and end-user experience. MPLS networks can’t handle the large volumes of data over wide area networks from cloud resources and software-as-a-service (SaaS) applications.
By contrast, software-defined WANs can manage multiple connection types and support SaaS applications, cloud resources, and applications hosted by data centers. Traffic can be routed across the WANs in real time over the most efficient paths. Cloud and internet traffic can be sent directly from the branch office without needing to backhaul it.
The ability of a software-defined WAN to manage multiple connection types across the wide-area network also improves the experience of end users while improving the performance of the applications. Hybrid connections can be managed dynamically while guaranteeing high-quality services.
Improved Cybersecurity with Software Defined Wide Area Networks
A major advantage of a software-defined WAN is its ability to enhance cybersecurity across the network. Organizations can partition and segment sensitive data and assets and protect them from vulnerabilities in other areas. This ability is critical in organizations that regularly handle sensitive information, including financial services, healthcare, and retail organizations.
Software-defined WAN also offers firewall capabilities that allow the networking technology to be quickly deployed at distant offices without harming security. The network can be segmented by administrators to detect and prevent DDoS attacks, inspect and filter packets based on their applications, encrypt data, and monitor active connections.
Since software-defined WANs rely on software, they can be rapidly deployed to new remote offices without the need to add more hardware at each location. This feature means that software-defined WANs are much more scalable than traditional WANs. When your organization adds new branches and locations, your SD-WAN can quickly be deployed to bring those locations online without the need to install additional servers and routers.