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VMblog Expert Interview: Joe Gleinser Talks Trustgrid, SD-WAN, Challenges and Benefits for Fintech and More

 

There's some exciting things happening in the SD-WAN and fintech space right now.  One vendor, Trustgrid, recently announced their EdgeNetwork solution which accelerates cloud migrations for fintech providers.  To learn more, I spoke with the expert from Trustgrid, the company's co-founder and chief product officer, Joe Gleinser.  

VMblog:  To get some background, let's kick things off by asking, who is Trustgrid?

Joe Gleinser:  Trustgrid is a pioneer in secure hybrid cloud connectivity. We simplify the connections between cloud applications and on-premises systems to reduce cost, IT complexity, and risk.

Founded about 3 years ago, Trustgrid enables enterprises to execute on their cloud migration strategies by providing the next generation of SD-WAN technology designed specifically for hybrid cloud networking. By combining cloud to on-premises networking with containerized deployments and automated management features we give organizations the flexibility to centrally manage hybrid cloud environments.

VMblog:  And what is the problem that Trustgrid is solving?

Gleinser:  Trustgrid solves the networking challenges of application providers who must connect to on-premises data. We do this through a software-defined connectivity platform that lets users get rid of the expense, delays and hassle of VPN and MPLS connectivity.

VMblog:  Why is this such a challenge for financial institutions and fintech providers?

Gleinser:  Fintech is challenged with the fact that they rely on banking data that they do not control. The banks that they provide applications for want to maintain control of their data, which means that fintech providers must establish a secure WAN between their application and the bank's data. Because banks are all unique, fintech application providers must be able to deploy and configure a secure network connection in a variety of IT environments, without control of one side of the network. They have typically relied on VPN or MPLS for these connections, but these legacy technologies become especially painful as connections scale into the hundreds or thousands. Once applications begin migrating to the cloud, these solutions become far more complex and/or unusable in cloud environments.

VMblog:  If you wouldn't mind, describe the product in a bit more detail for us.

Gleinser:  Trustgrid optimizes both network security and management functions. We separate the data plane and control plane of the network to give customers secure point-to-point connectivity between destinations, as well as the ability to see and manage all connections from a single pane of glass through a cloud portal. Because we are software-defined we can do things that legacy connectivity struggles with, such as Zero Trust security, easily managing overlapping private subnets, and cool stuff like deploying containers on network endpoints to enable edge computing use cases.

VMblog:  How is this different than other SD-WAN or VPN solutions?

Gleinser:  We are significantly different from VPN. We have far more security features, don't require proprietary hardware, and don't have to deal with the complexity of IPSec. We are what customers turn to when they are tired of managing VPNs.

We are often compared to SD-WAN in our technical evaluations. SD-WAN is a blanket term that spans everything from application-specific connectivity to branch-to-branch networking. So we are technically an SD-WAN, but there are two things that really set us apart from the typical SD-WAN.

First, we specialize in connecting sites that have different owners or heterogeneous environments. Meaning that when a WAN must be deployed and configured from one location into another environment the network owner only has limited access to, we excel. Because we can deploy and configure an endpoint via a plug-and-play device, or virtual appliance, our customers are able to send out a node and ask the other side of a connection to simply plug-in the device (or start a virtual appliance).

Second, we support edge computing use cases. Because we are a connectivity platform and not just a network solution connecting two endpoints, all of our network nodes have the ability to support code deployments on the node. This means that from Day One all of our customers have the ability to deploy code to, or create APIs from, any network node they have deployed. This could be used for things like performing ETL functions next to the remote database. This can lower latency for applications that need quick response, lower bandwidth utilization because not all data would have to be sent back over the network, and even provide lower computing costs if an application is currently centralized in a public cloud environment. These capabilities make Trustgrid the only connectivity solution that is future-proof.

VMblog:  How has the cloud affected network solution decisions?

Gleinser:  The cloud has forced companies to face some of the networking challenges they have been dealing with for years. Legacy WAN solutions have been a burden, but when it comes to moving applications to the cloud it becomes an impediment to fully realizing the benefits of a cloud migration. The cloud is forcing companies to clean things up and think about both current and future needs. Software-defined networking has stepped up to help them do that.

VMblog:  And finally, what kinds of benefits are customers seeing?

Gleinser:  From a networking perspective, our customers have seen massive ROI compared to the VPN and MPLS solutions they are leaving behind. Not only have they significantly reduced the total cost of connectivity and sped time to new deployments (sometimes by up to 90%), but they are also no longer struggling with the pain that comes from manually managing all of those connections. Being able to automate things like patches and updates saves tons of time and also makes it easy for our customers to stay in compliance. Having the ability to give DevOps teams access to certain network functions also provides efficiency gains to application development teams.

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Published Friday, September 27, 2019 9:42 AM by David Marshall
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