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Outdated Firewalls And The Lack Of Effective End-Point Security

Outdated Firewalls and the Lack of Effective End-Point Security

The cyber threat landscape is evolving at an unstoppable pace. And, it’s constantly presenting organizations with new security challenges.

Since the 1990s, businesses of all sizes have deployed firewalls as a fundamental security measure. But, only a small percentage of them have kept their firewalls up to date. And, a majority of those still rely on the same technology that’s been around for many years.

That said, traditional firewalls are no longer strong enough to provide effective end-point security. Fortunately, there’s a new generation of firewalls—one that can deliver complete application visibility and control, helping meet your business’ goals for security and growth.

Enter: Next-Gen Firewalls

Traditional firewalls, also known as stateful inspection firewalls, act as a barrier between a trusted internal network and the internet. It controls traffic based on ports, protocols and IP addresses. In other words, these firewalls focus on the third and fourth layers of the Open Systems Interconnection (OSI) model.

The problem is the current threat landscape, as well as the rise of cloud applications and SaaS services, presents many new security challenges. This requires a much finer degree of control than traditional firewalls can offer. Without true application-level awareness, there are many ways for cybercriminals to infiltrate your network perimeter and then wreak havoc.

Next-Generation Firewalls (NGFWs) go beyond the limited capabilities of traditional firewalls. They add deep packet inspection, intrusion prevention, malware filtering, and Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) and Secure Shell (SSH) inspections, among other needs.

“Next-Generation Firewalls combine application awareness and deep packet inspection to give companies more control over applications, while also detecting and blocking malicious threats,” explains Frank Ohlhorst, the president of Network Computing.

Benefits of Next-Gen Firewalls

Next-Generation Firewalls have many benefits businesses must first know about to fully understand from where their value comes. Consider:

  • Comprehensive network security. Because NGFWs bundle traditional firewall functionality with intrusion prevention and malware filtering, they provide comprehensive network security.
  • Reduced infrastructural complexity. Without needing a separate security solution, a business can reduce the complexity of its IT infrastructure, which, as a result, becomes more robust.
  • Increased availability and speed. NGFWs are designed with 99.999 percent availability in mind, and their performance is unmatched by traditional firewalls.
  • Granular control. With users accessing the internet from a plethora of electronic devices and using countless online apps and services to accomplish daily tasks, the true application awareness of NGFWs is essential for blocking access on a need-to-know basis.

Painless Firewall Upgrade

It’s natural for businesses to resist critical infrastructure upgrades. Such upgrades come with certain risks and can be costly and consume a lot of time and resources. However, it’s crucial to realize that relying on outdated firewalls can come at a steep price.

According to The Dirty Secrets of Network Firewalls study published by Sophos, 25 percent of mid-size businesses cannot identify more than 70 percent of their total network traffic. That’s because they depend on outdated firewalls. No wonder technicians, on average, spend seven working days per month fixing 16 infected machines. This is an astonishing loss of productivity.

These same businesses are better off taking advantage of managed IT security services, such as offered by Vology, to painlessly upgrade to a Next-Generation Firewall and bolster their cybersecurity. The MSSP has extensive experience with helping organizations of all sizes face the latest cyber threats and attacks, implementing the best technology solutions to solve the toughest challenges in the most cost-effective manner.