MEF State of the Industry Report Highlights Critical Need for Certified SASE Solutions to Combat Rising Cyber Threats


MEF Standards-based certification program offers comprehensive protection for secure digital transformation and drives SASE adoption

LOS ANGELES, June 25, 2024 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- MEF, a global industry association of network, cloud, security, and technology providers accelerating enterprise digital transformation, today released “State of the Industry Report: SASE – Validating Cyber Defense in an Era of Unprecedented Threats,” a comprehensive report that explores multiple factors dramatically increasing the risk of major cyberattacks worldwide. These ever-expanding threats are rapidly outpacing the ability of governments, organizations, and cybersecurity professionals to manage them. The report explains how enterprise networking and cybersecurity decisionmakers can utilize MEF standards-based SASE certification to choose the best solutions with validated cyber defense effectiveness and application performance.      

According to the report, many organizations are responding to today’s high-risk threat environment by prioritizing investment in SASE, a cloud-based cybersecurity model, to advance secure digital transformation. SASE solutions protect users, devices, and applications at scale regardless of their location, combining network connectivity via SD-WAN, cloud-based security including Zero Trust (ZT) and Security Service Edge (SSE), and subscriber policies, to provide a high level of application performance and a tightly integrated set of security capabilities.

Key findings include:

  • Industry Collaboration Essential: Stronger collaboration to develop effective, standardized and scalable cybersecurity solutions to protect critical infrastructure is essential. The SASE market is a logical focal point for collaboration.
  • Increased Investments: Global spending on cybersecurity, the top area of technology investment in 2024, is expected to increase at double-digit rates. According to Gartner, nearly 40% of CIO’s will or plan to deploy SASE solutions by mid-2025.
  • MEF Standards and Certification Drive Adoption: SASE industry standards and certification programs like MEF's are crucial for ensuring consistent terminology, interoperability, and validated security effectiveness of SASE solutions, building trust, and accelerating adoption.

Benefits of Standards-Based SASE Certification
The MEF SASE certification program detailed in the report represents the latest major development in a decade-long networking transformation, emphasizing adoption, standardization, and certification of SD-WAN, SASE, ZT, SSE, and Network-as-a-Service (NaaS) solutions. This effort aims to align stakeholders on common terminology, instill confidence in services and technologies, enhance industry efficiency, and accelerate SASE adoption and market growth. MEF SASE certification comprises three individual certification programs for SD-WAN, ZT, and SSE. Upon achieving all three separate certifications, a final SASE certification is issued.

"With cybercrime projected to cost the global economy $10.5 trillion by 2025, the risk of cyberattacks against enterprises and critical infrastructure has never been greater," said Pascal Menezes, CTO of MEF. "MEF’s latest report makes clear that certified SASE services provide the comprehensive protection needed for digital transformation. As organizations transition from SD-WAN to SASE and ultimately to NaaS with integrated SASE, standardized solutions delivered across automated ecosystems will be crucial to effectively combat rising cyber threats.”

Research Firms Shed Light on SASE
In addition to MEF’s own analysis of market trends, the report incorporates major findings from numerous market research firms on the evolving SASE market, including market growth estimates, key adoption drivers, migration challenges, and steps organizations can take to overcome these challenges. MEF coordinated with the following firms for inclusion of research content in the report: AvidThink, Dell’Oro Group, Frost & Sullivan, Gartner, IDC, Omdia, TeleGeography, and Vertical Systems Group.

Organizations Supporting SASE Certification Program
The following five SASE technology suppliers currently are engaged in the MEF SASE certification program: Cisco, Fortinet, Palo Alto Networks, Versa Networks, and VMware by Broadcom. The program is also supported by MEF’s Board of Directors, which includes senior executives from AT&T Business, Colt Technology Services, Comcast Business, Console Connect by PCCW Global, Liberty Latin America, Lumen, Microsoft, Orange Wholesale International, Sparkle, and Verizon Business Group.

To access the full report and gain deeper insights into the importance of standardized and certified SASE solutions, visit is MEF’s Accredited Test and Certification Partner (MEF-ATCP) for SASE, utilizing testing methodologies powered by Keysight and Spirent. To learn more about MEF’s SASE standards and certification program, visit MEF 3.0 Certifications for SASE.

To engage with MEF on SASE and learn how service and technology providers can participate in the SASE certification program contact

About MEF
MEF is a global consortium of service, cloud, cybersecurity, and technology providers collaborating to accelerate enterprise digital transformation. It delivers standards-based frameworks, services, technologies, APIs, and certification programs to enable Network-as-a-Service (NaaS) across an automated ecosystem. MEF is the defining authority for certified Lifecycle Service Orchestration (LSO) business and operational APIs and Carrier Ethernet, SASE, SD-WAN, Zero Trust, and Security Service Edge (SSE) technologies and services. MEF's Global NaaS Event (GNE) convenes industry leaders building and delivering the next generation of NaaS solutions. For more information about MEF, visit and follow us on LinkedIn and Twitter

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Melissa Power

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