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Enterprise Networking Planet Networking Predictions for 2018

What's ahead for 2018 in networking?

 By Sean Michael Kerner | Posted Dec 28, 2017
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As 2017 comes to close, it's that time of year to think ahead about what's yet to come next year.

In the world of networking, including enterprise switching, routing, virtualization, SD-WAN, mobility and collaboration that Enterprise Networking Planet focuses on, there are a lot of different things to look forward to in 2018.

Following are predictions on the state of enterprise networking for 2018 from a number of leading vendors.

IoT in a BIND: Legacy DNS Unprepared for Real-time Demands and Security Requirements

Kris Beevers, CEO and founder at NS1, a next-generation DNS provider, predicts that in 2018, IoT will move from evaluation to full scale deployment.

Breevers expects that the increase of IoT data will put even more demands on DNS infrastructure, but legacy DNS solutions based on BIND and derivatives will be unable to keep up with the real-time requirements of IoT applications, which will rely upon high velocity real-time traffic management to enable edge computing strategies that slash latency.

"The solution to this distributed architecture model will be that enterprises move computing and data centers closer to the IoT devices at the edge," Beevers said. "In turn, enterprises will increasingly rely on DNS technologies that include intelligent traffic management to direct workload across such highly distributed edge architectures."

Enterprises Will Get Serious about Network Segmentation

Jim Brear, CEO of Veriflow, predicts that in 2018 there will be an increase in network segmentation projects.  He explained that network segmentation splits networks into isolated subnetworks. The advantage to this approach is that it can increase network performance and overall network security. Using network segmentation, critical data and infrastructure can be isolated in one network segment, while employees are isolated in another. What's more, employees and data can be microsegmented into even smaller groups.

"To efficiently and effectively carry out these segmentation programs and ensure continuous protection, we predict a growth in systems that use intelligent network inference, machine learning and other automated analysis technology to identify zones of defense and ensure the intended network-wide behavior," Brear said. "We anticipate this trend will continue to gain momentum in 2018 as part of a broader movement towards intent-based networking (IBN)."


Security and Networking Professionals Will Work Together More Closely

 
"When a large corporate network goes down, the first notion is to suspect a security breach," Brendan O’Flaherty, CEO of cPacket Networks, said. "But the source could just as likely be a difficult-to-detect spike or microburst or a misconfiguration."

In O'Flaherty's view, the problem is that the jobs of network performance monitoring and security monitoring are separate and siloed.  But in an outage, when you silo these teams, the end result can be finger-pointing, and network problems with massive consequences go undetected or take longer to isolate. 

O'Flaherty predicts that in 2018 companies will begin to acknowledge that networking and security personnel work better as a team, just as development and operations personnel did in creating the DevOps movement.


Network Security will Ultimately be Driven by Machine Learning and Artificial Intelligence


Hansang Bae, CTO, Riverbed Technology, predicts that in 2018 machine learning (ML) and artificial intelligence (AI) technologies at the security layer are going to be extremely dependable sentinels.

"Unlike today's network security systems, which are largely human administered and maintained, ML and AI will be constantly vigilant against threats and vulnerabilities and will allow us to use the 'P' (prevention) in IPS with confidence," Bae said. "The current thinking as a security professional is that if you have an updated database, secure firewall, patched OpenSSL, etc., you’re secure. But this presents a false sense of confidence that can be fatal to the security of the network."



Sean Michael Kerner is a senior editor at EnterpriseNetworkingPlanet and InternetNews.com. Follow him on Twitter @TechJournalist.

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