In today’s rapidly evolving digital landscape, ensuring robust security for cloud-based applications and data is paramount. Alkira, a leader in cloud networking as a service, integrated with Zscaler, a renowned cloud security platform, to provide customers with enhanced security capabilities.

Figure 1: Alkira Connectivity with Zscaler

Integration steps:

1. Retrieve ZIA Service Edge IPs: Customer can get the IPs for the closest ZIA PoPs to the Alkira CXP using the API (

2. Configuration and Establishing Connectivity: Alkira Cloud Exchange Points (CXPs) establish secure tunnels to Zscaler Public Service Edges, facilitating seamless connectivity between Alkira and Zscaler’s security infrastructure.

Figure 2: Alkira Portal – Zscaler Integration Configuration

3. Traffic Steering: User traffic is directed to ZIA using Alkira traffic policies based on the required 5-tuple match conditions to, which gives users ability to selectively send desired traffic flows to Zscaler and redirect other traffic flows to other NGFWs if needed.

Figure 3: Diagram showing selective traffic steering example

Figure 4: Alkira Policy example for Traffic Steering


Customers can hit the URL from the resource they are trying to access the internet from to validate that the traffic is hitting Zscaler, and they should see an output similar to the one below.

Figure 5: Validating Zscaler connectivity

Alkira Benefits:

The integration of ZIA with Alkira enhances user experience in several key ways:

Simplified Deployment and Enhanced Resilience

By integrating Alkira with Zscaler, customers can enjoy streamlined deployment processes and bolstered network resilience. With this integration Alkira overcomes the tunnel limitation, customers no longer need to configure and add tunnels based on throughput needs manually. They just input the required throughput and Alkira takes care of the rest.Additionally, the health checks ensure seamless failover to Zscaler’s Points of Presence (PoPs) in case of network disruptions or failures, enhancing overall network reliability and minimizing downtime.

Selective Traffic Steering

Based on required match conditions, the customer can choose to send selective traffic to Zscaler, which provides flexibility in terms of what traffic needs to be inspected via Zscaler and what traffic needs to be inspected using other 3rd party NGFWs in the Alkira CXP.

Monitoring and Visibility

Alkira provides monitoring capabilities and visibility into all traffic that is going to traverse Zscaler. Users have rich visibility into the type of traffic is going to the ZIA service and also check BW utilization for that traffic.


Alkira segment represents a unique routing and policy space, maintaining isolation for workloads and traffic flows becomes seamless for customers. Because of this flexibility, the ZIA service is restricted to that unique segment and region within Alkira.


By leveraging Zscaler’s integration with Alkira, organizations can confidently embrace the benefits of cloud computing while ensuring the highest security and compliance standards.

Unlock the power of integrated cloud security with Alkira CSX and Zscaler. Experience enhanced protection, simplified management, and unparalleled peace of mind in your cloud journey.

About the Authors :    & 

Ahmed Abeer is a Sr. Product Manager at Alkira, where he is responsible for building a best-in-class Multi-Cloud Networking and Security Product. He has been in Product Management for more than ten years in different big and small organizations. He has worked with large enterprise and service provider customers to enable LTE/5G MPLS network infrastructure, automate Layer 3 Data Center, enable Next-Gen Multi-Cloud architecture, and define customers’ Multi-Cloud strategies. Ahmed’s technical expertise in Cloud Computing and Layer 2/Layer 3 network technologies. Ahmed is a public speaker at various conferences & forums and holds a Master’s Degree in Computer Engineering

Deepesh Kumar is a Solutions Architect and product specialist in the computer networking industry with over 6 years of experience. He currently works as part of the post sales team at Alkira and focuses on working with customers to design and deploy the Alkira solution. Prior to working here , he worked at Viptela which was acquired by Cisco Systems. He holds a masters degree from San Jose State University