How Unified Threat Managers Are Different Than Next-Generation Firewalls

How Unified Threat Managers Are Different Than Next-Generation Firewalls

Unified Threat Managers (UTMs) and Next Generation Firewalls (NGFW) are often categorized together. I am going to define what is generally included in each product what the differences are, approaches to evaluating, and decisions to make when considering either of these solutions.

What is a UTM? [Read more…]

Four Things You Need to Do to Protect your VMs

Four Things You Need to Do to Protect your VMs

According to Frank Gens, IDC Senior VP & Chief Analyst at Trend Micro, the number one concern about cloud services is security.

As you know, physical firewalls don’t inspect or filter the vast amount of traffic that originates from a hypervisor running several virtualized servers. It turns out that this is a significant vulnerability when you consider that VMs start, stop, and move from one hypervisor to another at the click of a button.

Additionally, few hypervisors have the access controls that even the most basic file server has, and once someone gains access to the hypervisor, they could potentially access and control all of the VMs housed there.

Finally, protective features have to handle all these movements and activities, and agent backups are complex to manage — with one agent required per VM.

Even with the vulnerabilities clearly spelled out, many IT managers may still have “secure the hypervisor” way down on their to-do list – there are just so many priorities. That’s fine, of course – until the unthinkable happens.

So how should IT Managers protect VMs? Here are the four key things to consider:

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How A Firewall Makes Your Network More Accessible – And Invulnerable [Cisco]

From business to politics, it’s a given that openness tends to create opportunity, while tighter central control tends to bolster security.

Take your network. You naturally want to promote increased productivity and an exchange of ideas by making it more accessible to your partners, suppliers or customers. But doing so runs the risk of exposing proprietary business information and confidential data, inappropriate use of company resources and productivity loss – not to mention the very real threats of worms, viruses and malware.

For most enterprises in the Internet era, striking the right balance between openness and security can mean the difference between success and failure for a variety of endeavors. When it comes to networks, it really is possible to mitigate the high cost of risk with effective and reliable traffic control – providing stateful traffic inspection to restrict unwarranted traffic while maintaining the integrity of business-critical traffic. In other words, a firewall. Find and implement an integrated and manageable  firewall solution to do this and your company can go a long way to maintaining the kind of secure, reliable network environment essential to today’s interconnected business.

With its rich feature set, simple deployment and relative low cost, Cisco IOS Firewall’s single, software-based platform is an obvious choice for businesses looking for both the openness that can keep operations agile and competitive, as well as the robustness and scalability that will keep their network secure.

[Read more…]