As federal data and applications migrate to the cloud, expanding accessibility to a growing list of devices and users, federal networks face ever-increasing vulnerability to cyber threats. The security concept of Zero Trust has quickly gained traction as not just a possibility, but a necessity for mitigating cybersecurity risks alongside IT modernization. The concept is simple in theory – no person or location should be trusted by default, even if they are inside the network perimeter.
To help federal agencies handle the implications of digital transformation, Akamai Technologies puts theory into practice with a Zero Trust security framework. Randy Wood, vice president of U.S. public sector sales for Akamai, explained the approach during a discussion with Federal News Network.
“Let’s provide instead least privileged access on a user by user basis to the applications that they require, where identity is centerpiece to that application experience,” Wood said.
By minimizing access to applications based on requirements of the specific user, Zero Trust security removes the need to rely on the traditional boundaries of a network perimeter. Wood clarified how IT modernization has made network perimeters obscure and no longer reliable for cybersecurity in modern federal IT.
“Perimeter could be anywhere. It could be my applications on-prem, it could be in the cloud, it could be in gov-cloud, it could be a combination of as-a-service, applications,” he said.
Akamai’s cybersecurity systems are designed to help government agencies navigate IT challenges including that of network trust and malware. Wood gave the foresight that a Zero Trust model is the future for securing federal IT.
“So, by adopting a Zero Trust approach, we really have an opportunity to solve two problems. This massive hardware footprint problem, and the shortage of security smart enabled people.
“I think in 2019 this is the year where Zero Trust becomes a reality. It’s leveraging a high performance Akamai platform to provide a better, more secure, high performance intelligent application experience,” Wood said.
The Federal Cloud Movement
Let's provide instead least privileged access on a user by user basis to the applications that they require, where identity is centerpiece to that application experience.
Vice President, U.S. Public Sector Sales, Akamai
Trust in Cyber Networks
Perimeter could be anywhere. It could be my applications on-prem, it could be in the cloud, it could be in gov-cloud, it could be a combination of as-a-service, applications.
Vice President, U.S. Public Sector Sales, Akamai
The Architecture of the Network
I think in 2019 this is the year where Zero Trust becomes a reality. It's leveraging a high performance Akamai platform to provide a better, more secure, high performance intelligent application experience.
Randy Wood is Vice President, US Public Sector Sales at Akamai. In this role, Randy is responsible for customer advocacy, mission partnership and leading Akamai’s sales business within the US Public Sector (Federal and SLED) market. Prior to joining Akamai, Randy held several sales leadership positions at both Red Hat and F5 Networks, where he was the Vice President of Federal Sales for 4 years.
Randy has served in a variety of technical and direct sales leadership positions throughout his past 25 years in the IT industry. He spent nine years at Cisco Systems from 1996-2005, working in engineering, leadership and direct sales roles. In 2005, Randy left Cisco and spent two years at Symantec as Director of Sales for the Public Sector DoD /Intelligence team.
Prior to his return to Cisco in early 2010, Randy was VP of Sales for the US Public Sector at Informatica. He came to Informatica by way of acquisition of Agent Logic, an In-Q-Tel portfolio company, where he spent nearly three years as VP of Sales for the US enterprise market, leading the company’s explosive growth and leadership position in the emerging complex event processing market.
Randy has a Bachelors of Science in Mathematics from the Virginia Military Institute, and a Masters of Science in Management Information Systems/Information Technology from the George Washington University. A former officer in the United States Marine Corps, Randy is a veteran of Operation Desert Shield and Desert Storm.
John Gilroy has been a member of the Washington D.C. technology community for over twenty years. In 2007 he began weekly interviews on Federal News Network called “Federal Tech Talk with John Gilroy.” His 428 interviews provides the basis for profitable referral business. In 2009 he created a successful breakfast club of previous radio guests called The Technology Leadership Roundtable. He has been instrumental in two of his guests forming their own radio shows: Derrick Dortch with “Fed Access” and Aileen Black and Gigi Schumm with “Women in Washington.”
In 2011 he began teaching a course in social media marketing at Georgetown University; in March of 2014, John won the Tropaia Award for Outstanding Faculty. John conducts monthly corporate training for large companies on how to leverage social media to generate revenue.