It's a big, bad world out there - with cyber crime on the rise and security being a number one priority for IT professionals worldwide. It's an unfortunate reality that cyber security systems often rely too heavily on point-in-time defences, which can't stand up to the onslaught of constantly evolving multi-vector attacks that define threats in today's IT sector.
Taking measures to protect your network from these threats means ensuring your network security systems can withstand the rigours of modern cyber attacks. Next-generation firewalls (NGFW) provide an effective solution to these hazards by providing the best possible protection with comprehensive cover. Understandably, choosing a next-gen firewall can be a tricky affair, but there are key areas of focus that a good NGFW should meet in order for it to suit your needs.
7 Vital Factors to Consider When Choosing an NGFW
1. It should provide well-integrated security functionality
A well-rounded NGFW should provide tightly integrated security layers that communicate efficiently with one another. The level of integration between these security layers and their communicative abilities are vital in ensuring threats from an ever-expanding attack surface area are quickly detected and identified. By coordinating defences and sharing intelligence, these security layers provide an advanced deterrent to malicious activity.
2. It should show actionable indications of compromise
When an infection is thought to have occurred, an NGFW should be equipped to display indicators of compromise that correlate network and endpoint security intelligence, thus providing detailed and accurate visibility into the suspicious and malicious behaviour.
3. It should help reduce costs and complexities
If a good NGFW is effective in thwarting advanced threats, it unifies security across multiple defence layers, a multi-layered approach that offers better protection and saves the costs and complexities of purchasing multiple solutions to perform the same function.
4. It should provide investment protection
When planning to invest in a NGFW that'll offer comprehensive protection to your organisation, it's important to select a vendor that offers different purchasing options. This allows your business the opportunity to lower costs and improve productivity through proactive management, renew technology in line with both present and future strategies and access affordable financing solutions.
5. It should integrate well with third-party security solutions
The total cost of ownership and the management complexities of maintaining a comprehensive security system for your IT environment can be minimised by integrating with third-party technologies. These technologies include vulnerability scanners, SIEM platforms and software management solutions. A comprehensive NGFW should be able to integrate easily with any third-party technologies you may choose to use.
6. It should offer comprehensive network visibility
A great NGFW should be able to provide you with a clear and thorough overview of activities happening on your network at any time, whether it's communication between virtual machines, threats, vulnerabilities, users, devices and applications. This insight should be in real-time to aid your security team in taking swift action. It should also be able to automate defences in the event of an attack, reducing the burden on your security professionals.
7. It should automate certain routine security tasks
Tasks such as impact assessments, user identification and policy tuning should be automated for ease of use, and to ensure they're regularly performed.
Choosing a next-gen firewall is a wise decision, one which ensures you've done all you can to protect your network from threats and malicious activities. Make sure you choose wisely and rest easy in the knowledge that your network security works for you.