In the Know: Network Connectivity & Security Solutions

Posted by Fuel HQ on Sep 8, 2017 9:15:00 AM

Effective security solutions are just as much about how to deploy tools as what kind of tools are used. We recently caught up with Chris Bihary, CEO and co-founder of Garland Technology, and Patrick Nixdorf, system engineer for the company, who will co-present a webinar on September 19 that focuses on security solutions.

During the webinar, participants will review common Palo Alto Networks Next-Generation Firewall (NGFW) deployments and additional applications for multi-vendor security and monitoring tools. With Bihary and Nixdorf’s combined 20+ years of expertise, the webinar ultimately aims to educate and open minds on a variety of tools to help security experts be as prepared as possible in an unpredictable world.

Fuel: What will attendees of the webinar learn in regards to multi-vendor security and monitoring tools?
Bihary: In one of our Fuel User Group webinars last year, we surveyed the group and asked how many security tools they currently deployed. There was a 65 percent response rate of three or more. We are making an intelligent assumption one of those tools is a Palo Alto Networks NGFW, and the others are typically web application firewalls (WAFs), intrusion prevention systems (IPSs), or distributed denial-of-service (DDoS). While there is some overlap with services and features from Palo Alto’s NGFW, many companies have policies not to be beholden to one vendor for their security stack. Garland is in a unique space, as the connectivity solution, because we see all the tools that are being deployed and make workable solutions for multi-vendor programs, both on the security side and feeding the monitoring tools the same data.

Fuel: What are the most complex network access problems?
Nixdorf: The increase in security tools being deployed and the ability to figure out a single, unified management system are among the most complex network access issues that companies face today. Also the increase in core network speeds from 1G/10G to 25G/40G and 100G.This creates a nightmare of different media types that need to be supported. 

A common scenario we see is customers having a monitoring tool that isn’t the same media type as a live connection, or vice versa. There may be a single-mode, extended-range (ER) fiber network link that stretches about 10km. But the network analyzer is sitting two feet away. The first option might be to purchase the transceivers to match the links; however, this is expensive and inefficient, as there is a more cost effective approach to media conversion. 

Another common scenario is having a 10G live network link, but a 1G NGFW. With advanced load balancing, we can provide active, session aware load balancing to multiple 1G NGFW. In our webinar, we will review media and speed conversion scenarios in more detail.

Fuel: Can you explain the importance of how you deploy cybersecurity tools?
Bihary: A common mantra in the security space is, “you can’t protect what you can’t see.” With active, inline security tools, a bypass tap is considered a best practice for connectivity because it is the only way to guarantee 100 percent packet capture while ensuring network uptime. No other connectivity method provides 100 percent packet capture, 100 percent network uptime – even during updates, trouble-shooting and maintenance.

Fuel: What is one tip for how to best manage remote site management? 
Bihary: Make sure you have a way to remotely troubleshoot your on-site tools and perform maintenance without taking the network down. The message of “our site will be down for scheduled maintenance” is no longer acceptable in today’s 24-hour, on-demand world.


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Topics: Cybersecurity, Fuel Education, Palo Alto Networks, NGFW, network connectivity, Webinar, security solutions, next-generation firewall

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