As cybercrime continues to affect businesses of all sizes, in all industries, public and private, we want to take this opportunity to explore options that can help protect your data and your business. It often asked if “security as a service” is the right choice for many organisations. In this case, we address the problem of managed firewalls versus a self-managed solution. Before we get there, however, let’s take a look at the history of network firewalls and how to determine which type is best for you.
Network Firewalls History
According to extnoc.com a managed network firewall is a system or group of methods that used to control access between two networks, an approved network and a reliable network, which uses predefined rules or filters. Firewalls can include a single router, multiple routers, multiple hosts running a firewall or firewall software, or hardware devices designed to provide firewall services or any combination of the above. They vary significantly in design, functionality, architecture, and values. Sometimes they are also called Border Protection Devices (BPD), where a firewall separates the networks, creating perimeter networks in perimeter networks.
Network firewalls existed almost simultaneously with the Internet, as they first appeared in the late 1980s in response to a series of Internet security violations.
Over the years, they have gone through numerous iterations, starting with packet-level filtering firewalls developed in 1988 by Digital Equipment Corporation, and then moving to channel-level firewalls. The current generation, often called next-generation firewalls (NGFW), combines the attributes of previous versions, but has been extended to include other filtering capabilities for network devices, such as application-level firewalls, including an inspection scan on packet depth (PPE), intrusion prevention systems (IPS), health checks, personal identification and ability to use external sources of information to identify and prevent possible violations. In some cases, they may also have antivirus functionality.
Who Should Use Firewalls?
The short answer is that all enterprises and organisations in modern companies should use some firewalls, including small ones and even home ones. The hackers of past years could be smart teens demonstrating their ability in digital technology, or a lone wolf trying to break into the network by attacking passwords. Today, many of these violations are the result of the concentrated efforts of organised criminals who carry out automatic attacks.
Worms and viruses launch the vast majority of assaults, using advanced worms and malware to detect vulnerabilities and infiltrate poorly protected networks. These types of attacks usually achieve their random goals. As a result, organisations that may feel scarce or missing confidential information may also be victims of cybercrime without taking appropriate preventative measures.
The list may include access to the network, access outside the system, access between internal networks, departments or buildings, access to specific groups, users or addresses, and access to certain resources or services.
A third-party managed firewall service managed by certified Managed Security Service Providers (MSSP) can be a solution for many, if not most, organisations. The main advantages of this approach can include:
● Device provisioning and deployment
● Performance, availability and policy management, upgrades and patch management
● Real-time security and health monitoring and expert response to threats and health issues
● 24/7 real-time security event and device health monitoring
● Support from certified network security experts
● Potential for the improved total cost of ownership and reduced costs
● Simplified management
● Better internal threat protection
● Reduced internal IT security training
The conclusion when deciding which approach will work best for your organisation is the number of firewalls you may need to manage and maintain.
Historically, organisations usually had only one firewall between themselves and the world. Now, not only are the devices themselves more complicated, but there is more to the setup. Segmentation, even micro-distribution, means that organisations use multiple firewalls to place controls and guarantees between areas of their network, as well as to protect them from external influences — the increases in the complexity of your cybersecurity defence.
Using a managed firewall service can help a team of information security experts detect preventive new threats and help alleviate threat problems without hiring, training, or managing internal staff. With the increasing threats to cybersecurity, it is continuously evolving and endangering organisations of any size in all areas, ensuring that data security is fundamental, regardless of the path chosen.