Today’s Firewall is More Important in a Multi-Perimeter World

Cloud computing, virtualization, mobility – and now expansive work-from-home policies – have dramatically changed how organizations conduct business. As enterprises become more distributed and as more remote users access more cloud-based applications, the traditional perimeter that separates inside from outside, and trusted from untrusted, is increasingly disappearing.

Anywhere, anytime access fosters collaboration and enables gains in productivity, but also adds the security challenges of provisioning access based on user, device-type, application, access type – and even time of day – to the ongoing, previous security challenges that continue to exist. Equally important, attackers continue to strengthen their skills and refine their techniques. Creative threats are coming from a variety of vectors, including high-risk URLs and weaponized web applications.

In an age of anywhere, anytime, hyper-distributed business where legacy cybersecurity solutions fall short, what’s needed is stronger secure gateways to protect the perimeter no matter where it is located. To stay ahead of the threats, it’s time for security professionals to re-embrace Next-Generation Firewalls (NGFW).

The firewalls of today are more agile, more capable, and more powerful than when the technology debuted 20 years ago. Today’s Next-Generation Firewalls build on the strengths of past firewalls and include modern networking capabilities and all of the security controls such as SSL/TLS decryption, user control, application-level filtering, and sandboxing. Among other things this brief explores criteria to consider in evaluating NGFWs include:

  • Networking capabilities
  • Security features
  • Manageability
  • Programmability