Edge computing has grown from being a niche use case in a handful of industries to offering a major opportunity for enterprises across industries to spread compute power around the world (or universe, as in the case of workloads in space). Edge computing slashes latency times by processing data where the data is being collected, or when it might otherwise be impossible to process because a workload or piece of hardware is disconnected from the network.

But when you consider any advanced technology, the question of security and data protection is always top of mind. This is especially true for edge devices or systems that stretch the enterprise perimeter and can’t be as easily managed by network administrators as on-premises or cloud systems. 

We worked with S&P Global Market Intelligence to survey industry experts to help you better understand where edge deployments are in terms of maturity, scale and security challenges. We then published The State of Edge Security Report to provide those insights and best practices so you can benchmark yourself against your peers and make better decisions when considering edge computing and edge security for your organization.

This report is based on a survey of over 300 respondents of engineering and security professionals from around the world.

Some key findings from this year's survey include:

  1. Security is a top challenge with edge deployments.
  2. Edge deployments are increasing in scale across investments, projects, use cases, endpoints and types of endpoints.
  3. Attacks on edge systems through vulnerabilities and misconfigurations are on the rise.

Where has edge been growing?

Most of our respondents shared that they're planning to invest in existing and new edge projects over the next couple of years. That’s a great strategy considering the agility and data processing they're planning to add to their organizations. Edge use cases will continue to expand with these investments, and we'll see even more exciting case studies from all sectors.

Figure 1: Steady growth across the edge

Figure 1: Steady growth across the edge

What about edge security concerns?

Edge computing increases your attack surface. While this is certainly a major concern, a thoughtful and comprehensive edge strategy will not only account for business value at scale, but also security for your entire edge ecosystem.

The top-ranked challenge for our respondents was about data, network and device security, and physical/digital security. This challenge highlights where our respondents think their edge efforts may be hampered as they scale and try new ways of working.

When we probed further, we learned the top three security-related concerns dealt with cyberattacks (both inside and outside attackers) and vulnerabilities. Enterprises recognize the growing risks of edge infrastructure expansion. However, investment in tools and processes that harden your edge systems against attacks—including shift-left security, software supply chain management and intrusion detection—can limit those risks while you continue to  reap the business benefits of edge computing.


Figure 2: Edge system security incident risks

Figure 2: Edge system security incident risks

For more insights into the survey responses and what they mean for your organization, read the full report.

About the author

Rosa Guntrip is a senior manager for Red Hat Hybrid Platforms Business Unit. Rosa is a marketing professional with over 20 years in the tech industry with responsibilities including global solutions and services marketing, product marketing, marketing engineering, and product management.

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