The SA Government's overall digital environment is in a state of disarray and is facing a host of challengers:

  • Inefficient systems and the lack of technical skills to meet demand.
  • Due to a high level of mismanagement, lack of equipment maintenance and unskilled staff, South Africa consumers are faced with highly inefficient or non-existence service.
  • Cyber-attacks are all too common within the public sector costing millions of rand every year.
  • Working conditions and access to information is cumbersome and time consuming further frustrating staff and consumer alike.
  • Lack of funding and expenditure controls.
  • Staff apathy.

The above highlight some of the issues the SA Government is facing and are looking to technology in attempt to address at least some of these issues. However, within the South Africa context, OAS has realized that skilled staff is the biggest hinderance to digital transformation. Government departments need, more than anything else, a partner to assist them in infrastructure optimization.

The Solution is OAS Managed Service Provider (MSP)Agreement.

OAS MSP can offer agreements that range from network auditing and consulting to solution recommendation, implementation, deployment and maintenance and support. OAS is a specialized digital transformation consultancy and can offer experienced and certified technical assistance to government departments on a contractual basis, designed to meet the department requirements. This will bridge the skills gap and ensure the technology is correctly installed and working.

The next challenge is that government departments have implemented a variety of software solutions which in many cases are in conflict with the infrastructure’s underlying platform.

The solution is the Citric Platform as a Service (PaaS) and Citrix Infrastructure as Service (IaaS)

Citrix PaaS - delivers an accessible platform (including things like development tools, database management systems, servers, storage, and networking solutions) that enables users to build, test, deploy, manage, and update cloud-based applications.

Citrix IaaS - IaaS moves vital storage, networking, and computing resources to the cloud. Organizations using IaaS platforms can reduce the amount of money spent on buying and managing on-premises servers and datacenters. IaaS services are offered on a pay-as-you-go basis, allowing organizations to scale their infrastructure up and down as needed.

If the Citrix solutions are implemented it will facilitate all the different solutions to operate in a unfired and optimal manor. However again, due to the serve lack of skills it is important that Government partner with a suitable vendor via a Manage Service agreement. OAS MSP can offer a full range of services from infrastructure audit and consulting right through to solution recommendation, implementation, deployment and on-going maintenance and support.

The second most important component that the SA Government infrastructure is lacking, is a comprehensive network security solution. In the past couple of years, we have seen several cyber-attacks on the various Government departments causing millions of rands worth of damage.

In solving the security issue, Citrix offers one of the world’s leading Cyber Security solutions based on Citrix’s Zero Trust Network Access philosophy.

Citrix secure access

The solution offers to two major areas of protection:

External: - With remote access becoming the norm, the use of BOYD, accessing from any network has expanded the cyber threat attack service. Citrix Secure Access counteract any treat by connecting users at the application level, making it easy to improve the security posture in a remote-first world. In addition, the traditional replacing VPN security protocols with cloud delivered ZTNA.

In addition, CSA uses adaptive authentication and adaptive access policies based on device posture, location, and risk scores. Therefore, employees get to the resources they need, on the devices they want to use, keeping data secure.

Internal: Internal threats can be more problematic than external. Many reports of mismanagement, malicious employee behaviour and potential theft and fraud shows that the internal threats are more costly and damaging than external.

Citrix Secure Access coupled Citrix Analytics for security can are designed to not only protect networks from external attacks but also to maintain a high level of security from Internal threats.

The solution not only requires adaptive authentication as described above, but can also assess, and prevent unwanted behaviour. Analytics for security is design to monitor and assess user behavior, report any anomalies, and prevent and malicious damage in real time.

Finally, the solution can also allow for user usage policies to put in place so that only those employees who have permission to access certain information or applications will be allowed and a cyber paper trail can be developed in order to follow and pinpoint unauthorized access.

In conclusion the above high lights that the SA government will need to develop a digital transformation strategy that is unfired in the sense that all systems are compatible, invest in a comprehensive network security solution and employ the services of a managed service partner for the organization to successfully digitally transform in order to meet the demands of the public.