Enterprises are increasingly turning to next-generation firewalls for enhanced protection as modern cyberattacks become more sophisticated and sophisticated hacking methods become more widely used. New web-based malware and intrusion efforts are able to overcome security measures to infiltrate apps, making them vulnerable. To avoid detection, malware and phishing techniques are disguised inside the content of emails and transported over the network undetected.
Traditional firewalls did not have the intelligence to discern between different types of web traffic at the outset and simply followed web protocols. They were compelled to either accept or reject all traffic because of their incapacity to evaluate network-packet contents and distinguish genuine business applications from threats.
That protection based on ports, protocols, and IP addresses was out of the question. Organizations required security that wasn’t limited to IP addresses alone. A new set of guidelines was needed to govern the use of websites and applications across a network. There were NGFWs with advanced technology that promised deeper inspection capabilities and improved control over specific applications in a network as a result of this advancement in the field.
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What is the Next-Generation Firewall?
Security devices that go beyond typical firewalls include extra characteristics like threat intelligence, intrusion prevention, and application awareness in the form of next-generation firewalls. NGFWs still keep an eye on your network’s incoming and outgoing traffic, but they go beyond simple protocol analysis to target specific applications. It also employs intelligence from outside the firewall, and its defences are significantly more unified.
Next generation firewall is part of the third generation of firewalls, therefore they combine the functionality of old and new technologies. Next-generation firewalls include the following:
- Deep-packet inspection in real-time
- Inspection of encrypted traffic using TLS/SSL protocols
- Filtering on the web
- Bandwidth allocation and control
- Virus scanning
- Integration of an identity management system
- Detection of malicious software at an advanced level (sandbox security)
- Leverage the power of intelligence
- Control by the application and the user
- National Atmospheric and Space Administration (Network Address Translation)
- Automated routes
- Management with a strong central command
- Examining HTTPS-encrypted conduits
- Integration of third-party vendors
- APIs that are clearly laid out (application programming interface)
In large corporations, NGFWs are used to secure both public and private clouds from cyberattacks. With a large number of IoT devices, NGFWs are a must-have. Other options, such as a UTM firewall, are available for smaller businesses and organisations.
Every network expert should be familiar with the following top benefits of next-generation firewalls over traditional firewalls.
Next-generation Firewall’s Advantages
Application-level security functions
Applications like intrusion detection systems (IDS) and intrusion prevention systems (IPS) have been integrated into an NGFW.
Packet content filtering can be improved using these apps. These characteristics can also identify, analyse, and take action against unusual deviations from the standard set of activities, threat signatures, and intelligent assaults based on user behaviour, as well as anomalous activity.
Stateful inspections, network and port address translations, basic packet filtering, and support for virtual private networks are all features of traditional firewalls. Only the Data Link and Transport layers of the OSI model are covered.
For example, a next-generation firewall’s integrated IDS and IPS can detect attacks based on traffic behavioural analysis, threat signatures or unusual activity, as well as the classic firewall’s functions. In order to better filter network traffic, this feature allows for a deeper inspection of packets and better packet-content filtering.
Awareness of the application
Common ports and services on a network are often blocked by traditional firewalls so that applications and threats may be monitored. Traditional firewalls have a tough time identifying the targeted port because of the increasing complexity of network connectivity. Many programmes use numerous or different ports.
Tunnelling, in which a network protocol is encased in packets transported by a second network and de-encapsulated at the destination, is another method these ports are put to use. The next generation of firewall devices is able to identify exactly what is being delivered or received by monitoring traffic from layers 2 through 7. When a piece of content is found to be compliant with policy, it is either sent on its way or blocked.
Companies can also define policies based on the user and the application, thanks to application awareness. For example, enabling people to access Facebook but preventing them from using Facebook Chats.
Access from a Single Gaming Console
Instead of having to manually set up and configure each individual firewall, the next generation of firewalls can be conveniently accessed from a single console.
Protection with Multiple Layers
One layer of protection is not enough in the ever-evolving environment of data architecture, thus a typical firewall is pointless. Through the use of deep packet inspection and a thorough understanding of how data is transferred, Sangfor NGFW provides comprehensive security at several layers.
As a result, only data that falls within the parameters of the firewall policy will be allowed to pass.
Every new danger necessitates a distinct security appliance. A single authorised device can easily administer and update security protocols with the new generation firewall.
Because of this, security infrastructure is made simpler, and operating time is saved.
Use of Network Speed to its Fullest
Increasing the amount of security protocols and devices slows down a typical firewall. When there is a surge in security devices and services, a dedicated network speed cannot keep up. However, with a next-generation firewall, you can always reach the maximum throughput regardless of the number of devices or security protocols.
Endpoint security and protection against malware, ransomware, and spam
Antivirus, ransomware, spam, and endpoint security are all part of Sangfor NGFW’s comprehensive security suite. You won’t need to use different tools to accomplish these tasks if you make use of these features. Because NGFW has all of these functions, you not only save time and effort but also makes it easier to detect and control cyber threats.
Implementation of Role-based Access Control
The ability to identify a user is built-in into the latest generation of firewalls. Additionally, it has the ability to operate with multiple user roles and restrict access to an individual or a group of people. Using this functionality, organisations can designate which parts of their data and content are accessible only to people with specific job functions.
Organizations might also choose to make some of their data available to the public while keeping the rest private.
An NGFW is not only equipped to handle all of the classic firewall functions, but it also has the ability to take on today’s most dangerous cyber attacks head-on. NGFWs are quickly becoming an indispensable tool in the fight against cybercrime due to the wealth of functionality they offer.