ZTNA or Zero Trust Network Access

incorporating ZTNA into a secure access service edge

Zero Trust Network Access is a relatively fresh security concept. Basically, it’s about giving secure remote access only to those who need it. Stripped back to its simplest form, ZTNA hinges on the principle “Never trust – always verify”. This principle forms the basis of the zero-trust model.

Basic Concepts and Definitions

Zero Trust Network Access, often abbreviated as ZTNA, is a cyber security protocol that dictates no user or device should have access to any network resource without verifying their credentials. Essentially, it means granting the lowest level of access to every user or device connecting to a network.

Read more: Cyber Security.

Now let’s talk about some basic concepts in ZTNA. It comprises several key components: identity and multi-factor authentication (MFA), micro-segmentation, and least privilege.

  1. Identity and MFA deal with precisely identifying users before they are granted access, using multiple validation methods.
  2. Micro-segmentation is all about partitioning your network into smaller parts called ‘microsegments’. Each of these portions is only accessible once vetted through security policies. So if one part falls victim to an attack, this setup greatly limits its potential effects.
  3. The practice commonly known as ‘least privilege’, refers to restricting user rights within a system solely to what they need for their job role. The fewer privileges each user has, the less damage they can unwittingly cause in the event of an attack.

ZTNA not only confines your security worries but also paves the way for smoother remote working conditions by reducing vulnerability risks associated with home networks. Together these aspects make ZTNA an increasingly popular choice amidst today’s businesses.

Technical Aspects and Architecture

zero trust security model is based on defined access control policies

At its core, ZTNA works on a software-defined perimeter (SDP). Think of it as an invisible bubble that surrounds your network resources. When users or devices try to enter this bubble, they’re thoroughly checked before being let through.

What about when you’re dealing with data and apps spread across different locations? This is where ZTNA’s cloud-native nature comes in handy. It effectively connects users to their applications wherever they may be – could be on-premises, in the cloud, or in hybrid environments.

The SDP architecture basically divides network access into two stages: authentication and connection. During authentication, user identities are verified meticulously against security policies before establishing any network connection. Only once verified do folks get connected to their requested service or application.

Speaking of connections, there’s also a concept known as ‘inside-out’ connections in ZTNA. This essentially describes how connectivity requests are ‘pulled’ from inside the network rather than being ‘pushed’ externally from outside — thus reducing external attack surfaces dramatically.

Next up is encryption – a critical part of ZTNA’s toolkit. Every user-to-application connection route within the system is encrypted end-to-end to ensure safe data transmission.

Finally, ZTNA relies heavily on policy-driven access control anchored on user context and continuously evaluates trust levels to reinforce security postures even further – meaning conditions like device configuration or physical location can impact whether you gain user access or not!


ZTNA and VPN, two essential tools in today’s digital world, function to safeguard our online connectivity. However, they operate differently, serving distinct purposes.

VPNs or Virtual Private Networks are widely known. Their primary aim is to create a secure connection between your device and the server you’re accessing over the internet. By rerouting user traffic through a remote server and encrypting it end-to-end, VPNs provide privacy and security.

The main difference between these two methods lies in their approach to security. The “trust but verify” concept dominates VPNs – once inside the network firewall, all users have access until found suspicious. On the other hand, ZTNA adheres strictly to a “never trust, always verify” stance.

Read more: Firewall Security.

Translating it further practically – using a VPN might grant an intruder full access if they penetrate successfully. Conversely, with ZTNA systems even post-breach exposures remain minimal as access remains restricted to precise applications authorized for specific users.

But does that mean ZTNA outshines VPN? Not necessarily so! Both hold their unique realms of utility depending on distinct needs and situations.

Take into account mobile employees frequently switching networks; using a VPN may be undoubtedly handy here due to its large-scale defenses across multiple platforms. Meanwhile, for organizations heavily reliant on cloud-based applications—ZTNA proves beneficial providing greater security silos around each app and reducing overall exposure.

Read more: Network Security.

Cyber Security with ZTNA in Malaysia

remote users with secure connections on the entire network

In the ever-evolving digital landscape in Malaysia, enhancing cyber security has become a necessity rather than a choice. Spectrum Edge, as a reputed Fortinet distributor in Malaysia, is leading this battle on the front lines, offering state-of-the-art Zero Trust Network Access (ZTNA) solutions.

We understand that dependence on traditional security systems poses numerous threats and vulnerabilities. It is why our commitment lies not only in safeguarding your current interests but also in formulating proactive strategies for impending cyber threats.

Read more: Cyber Security for Business.

Choosing Spectrum Edge as your cyber security partner extends beyond just reliable security solutions; it’s about engaging with a team dedicated to your growth and safety in the online world.