Next generation firewalls (NGFWs) have become perimeter security “table stakes” for enterprise security. Potentially the most important network security investment an enterprise can make, NGFW technology is in high demand. There is considerable differentiation within the market, in spite of the fact that it has yet to reach maturity, and new features such as integrated threat intelligence feeds, cloud forensics, automated black-list population, and sandboxing have made purchasing decisions more complex.
The past year has been rife with an alarming increase in grievous information security incidents. Breaches, widely distributed software critical vulnerabilities, and increasingly sophisticated attacks all appeared with frightening regularity. Everyone who works in information security knows it’s a tough role. Much like public utilities, no one is grateful or concerned until it doesn’t work or isn’t there. Once you have been breached, the resolution will take considerably more time and investment than implementing simple preventative investments in the first place.
The malware is a little different to that which is typically dropped from regular exploit kits and malware campaigns. The difference lies in the way in which this malware is packaged, and in its method of operation.
Today’s continuously evolving threat landscape and the need for business continuity mandate the need to rethink security workflows. Robust virtual data centers and considerable computing power are the ingredients for a new approach to securing critical data. With an adaptive approach, mission and business functions can continue at the same time that malware is encapsulated and monitored.
Through the Cyber Advanced Warning System, NSS Labs is already observing reliable exploits for CVE-2014-6332 in the wild. Microsoft released security updates on November 11, 2014 to patch this vulnerability.
“Assume you have been breached” has become standard advice from information security professionals today. As organizations continue to be breached, the conventional approach to information security – in which layers of best-of-breed security technologies are used to protect an organization – is being challenged. Many organizations are beginning to acknowledge that in fact it is not possible to guarantee protection.
In my previous blog about the Palo Alto Networks results in our recent NGFW test I expressed the hope that “Palo Alto Network executives will take this issue seriously and move quickly to protect their customers."
We don’t follow up every NSS Labs test with a blog response to a vendor, but after the fun and games following our recent BDS test, we find ourselves in a similar position. This time it is Palo Alto Networks blogging about our NGFW group test, the results of which were published last week and can be found here.
Unlike most security technologies that attempt to identify a broad range of bad traffic by means of traditional detection methods, a web application firewall (WAF) is like a finely honed sword designed for a singular purpose: monitoring HTTP traffic between clients and web-servers. The payment card industry (PCI) accelerated the development of the WAF market since it provided a tangibly financial application of this technology. This made WAF a must-have in the arsenal of weapons for many of today’s security administrators.