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Why traditional NGFWs are no match for today’s security threats

June 13, 2017

Why traditional NGFWs are no match for today’s security threats

Next-generation firewalls (NGFWs) were created as an answer to modern security threats. NGFWs give IT solution providers and end users more visibility into their network policies and provide additional depth with regard to what users can allow or deny. However, many of these tools suffer from the same shortcomings as legacy firewalls and signature-based antivirus software—they can only detect and defend against what they “understand.”

Why threat-focused NGFWs are must-haves

In contrast to traditional NGFWs, threat-focused NGFWs like Cisco ASA (adaptive security appliance) with FirePOWER Services appliances comprise a set of detection engines that leverage both signature-based and signature-less technologies to evaluate data flows, files and other bits of information. How well this is done depends on the intelligence built into the verdict engines—not only allowing detection and dispositions of point-in-time events but detecting threats beyond the event horizon.

Unlike traditional security solutions that often are siloed, labor-intensive and lack threat visibility, Cisco ASA with FirePOWER Services offers an adaptive and threat-focused NGFW, which includes Sourcefire’s next-gen IPS (NGIPS). It provides in-depth protection and shares telemetry and intelligence across the entire attack continuum. Additionally, its advanced malware capabilities identify and safeguard against emerging and unknown threats. The solution features integrated layers of security, such as intrusion prevention, firewall routing and switching, URL filtering, identity-policy control and VPN. Working in harmony, these features make it easier to detect emerging and unknown threats that other security products miss.   

One of Cisco ASA with FirePOWER Services’ key differentiators is the Cisco FireSIGHT Management Center. From there, users can see client applications, operating systems, mobile devices, virtual machine-to-machine communication, VoIP phones, command and control servers, routers and switches, and malware. In addition to receiving far more information than other management systems, security automation reduces labor and cost to prioritize, tune and triage incident responses. Cisco ASA with FirePOWER Services can be used for branch offices, internet edge sites or large data centers. 

Join Ingram Micro for an educational 1-hour webinar, “Cisco Security Solutions—‘To Cloud or Not To Cloud?’ The Advantages of On-Premises (FirePOWER on ASA) or Cloud (Meraki MX),” Wednesday, June 21 at 1 p.m. Eastern. Learn about the advantages of on-premises, cloud and hybrid solutions to mitigate today’s threats, such as malware, intrusion prevention and content filtering. Attendees will also learn how Cisco offers flexibility in deployment strategies for security solutions to provide a wide range of options, services and sizing.