Monitoring the impact of security solutions on user experiences is critical

Modern organizations are challenged by conflicting demands to secure the enterprise while delivering excellent end-user experiences, according to Broadcom Software. The survey found more than half of respondents prioritize security over the end-user experience, often at the expense of productivity and customer satisfaction. Further highlighting this conflict is the finding that 46% of respondents have bypassed security to improve user experiences.

The rapid rise of hybrid workers and increasing reliance on cloud applications is changing the way businesses operate. As a result, the traditional concept of a defense perimeter has also changed, adding significant complexity to an already complex challenge.

At the same time, visibility into the user experience is becoming more challenging. Respondents cited hybrid workers (44%), 3rd-party networks and ISPs (43%), and public cloud resources (41%) as the biggest impediments to full visibility. Interestingly, newer security initiatives such as zero trust (26%) and SASE (23%) were also identified as contributing to the problem.

Respondents call for measurement of security’s impact on end-users

Survey respondents are largely united (92%) in their belief that monitoring the impact of security solutions on user experiences is critical. Further, 90 percent agree end-to-end user access paths for cloud-based applications should be monitored. And 68 percent state it is very important to monitor network security within the context of the entire system.

“There is no question security is critically important, but in a world made more competitive by digitalization, user experience is an equally critical driver of business success,” said Matt Stevens, Head of Network Observability, Agile Operations Division, Broadcom. “The complexity of modern business network infrastructure makes it very difficult for organizations to gain the visibility necessary to understand security’s impact on the end-user experience. As this research shows, this is driving a real need for visibility, measurement, and monitoring to help reverse the harmful tradeoff between security and user experience.”

Network security visibility demands holistic approach

When considering the impact of network security on the user experience, organizations demand a holistic approach. In fact, 66 percent believe network security solutions must be managed within the full context of the larger network including routers, switches, DNS, etc. Similarly, 68 percent stated it is very important to have the context of the larger system such as other infrastructure, applications, and services.

In a sign of growing user experience visibility issues, 97 percent of companies are planning on deploying zero-trust. Similarly, 96 percent plan to adopt SASE. Interestingly, while security professionals and executives may be at odds over the issue of security and user experience, 91 percent agree that having visibility into the user-experience is key for successfully adopting SASE.

Even as organizations adopt SASE, 83% of companies still employ a hybrid network security approach that utilizes both on-premises and cloud-based solutions. This means that digital experience monitoring solutions must span both traditional secure web gateway and SASE deployments to provide complete end-to-end visibility and meet the needs of most organizations.

User experience monitoring capabilities must evolve

When asked what features are required for a modern user experience monitoring solution, respondents cited several capabilities that directly support the need for holistic visibility and measurement, including:

  • the ability to monitor users when working remotely (55%)
  • easy to deploy (53%)
  • integrate with network security solutions (51%)
  • scalability (51%)

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