The Importance of Edge Computing for Cybersecurity

In these days of digital data, e-commerce, and the internet, every large corporation or business has what is known as a data center. In a way, this was always the case – businesses need to deal with substantial amounts of data, whether that be customer personal data, bank details, or information pertaining to suppliers and other third-party services.

Back in the day, the data center might have been a room full of filing cabinets at the company HQ; today it is the company’s central network – or whatever virtual location holds the majority of the data.

Any center implies an edge, and that is the best way to think about edge computing – data that is processed or stored on networks or devices apart from the data center. There is an obvious security benefit to doing this as it is the data center that is most likely to be targeted by cybercriminals.

Nevertheless, just because you have moved some data to this “edge” does not mean it is suddenly perfectly secure. And so, edge cybersecurity becomes essential.

What is Edge Computing?

To understand edge computing better, it is important to grasp the concept of edge networks. These can be linked devices, a single device, clouds, and even data centers that are simply smaller than the main one. Edge computing is therefore as varied as computing itself, given that any data storage medium can make up part of edge computing.

The security benefits of edge computing are therefore obvious, but the emergence of this phenomenon has brought along cyber security risks. For example, even though only some data will be processed at the edge, a company’s virtual attack surface is increased. What this means is that there are now more points of entry for cybercriminals. No single breach will imperil all company data, but plenty of valuable data will still be at risk.

Hillstone Networks, specialists in edge protection, say that it is this above all else that necessitates edge cybersecurity. There are simply more points of entry.

The Importance of Edge Cybersecurity

With edge computing comes an exponential increase in devices and networks that company data passes through. Much data is also processed at the edge, which is widely considered the time when the data is most at risk. The importance of robust edge cybersecurity becomes clear when you consider how widely spread this protection needs to be.

Overall, a switch to edge computing brings with it definite security benefits – and it can prevent the disaster of a company losing all its valuable data at once. Nonetheless, it should never be invested in without a simultaneous investment in edge cybersecurity to account for the new risks.

Examples of Edge Cybersecurity

The thing to note about edge security devices and software is that they are not, in essence, different from familiar cyber security apparatuses. Edge security can still take the form of hardware firewalls with routers, WAN devices, and so on. They are just oriented towards the computing going on at the edge, the data that is processed on those networks and devices, and the traffic flowing through them.

That said, edge security also features a means to analyze the data passing through as well as to utilize AI in order to determine its sensitivity and protect it against the most likely effects. Such AI capabilities can also watch for the most common indicators of threats, protecting against them and raising alerts in response to specific risks.

Edge computing is still a growing trend, and its obvious benefits mean we can probably expect it only to become more common. And with that, edge cybersecurity only becomes more important.