The concept of a security platform and the issues related to security and vendors sprawl has been rampant across organizations for years now. Today, there is an increased focus on the need for a new security platform that can span the entire network and adapt as the environment expands and evolves.
The primary motive for the introduction of the Next-Gen Firewall (NGFW) was to combine several products into one platform in order to reduce IT overhead and streamline wiring closets that had been swamped with security devices. The NGFW solutions were a big success and it quickly became the foundation for security implementations across all organizations in the world.
Today, digital innovation has transformed traditional networks significantly. Multi-cloud environments, data centers including virtual and physical infrastructures, mobile workers, and remote offices have disrupted the traditional perimeter and the traditional security model.
A new approach to a security platform that weaves every critical security function into a unified solution is essential for organizations. It should protect the entire network and help users to securely access all data and applications irrespective of where they are located. However, it is challenging to make it work in today’s distributed network environments. Therefore, an effective security platform is critical. It needs to be built on three pillars – broad, integrated, and automated.
A platform that can be deployed from everywhere
For a security platform to be effective, it should be deployed easily and consistently at every edge, whether it is for conventional or highly distributed data centers, branch offices, retail locations, or public cloud environments. Also, due to the rising growth in IoT devices, off-network mobile users, and home offices, it must extend to those places too. Companies should make sure that it runs natively in every cloud environment, be deployable in any environment, and exist in all possible form factors.
All components need to integrate with each other
Unlike the traditional security platforms, an effective solution must comprise tools that are designed to function as a single, integrated system. Meaning, security solutions that are part of that platform should operate on a common operating system, leverage open APIs, or be developed using common standards. An open system indicates that tools from several vendors can be used even while maintaining interoperability, allowing businesses to utilize tools that have been tested and approved to deliver top-notch solutions.
Today, integration must go beyond the security elements of a platform. Security and networking need to go hand in hand to provide a unified solution. So, when the network adapts to the changing environment either by adjusting connections or scaling resources, security can respond as part of a fully integrated system.
A platform to boost automation
Attacks can take place within a fraction of a second. With more rapid and sophisticated, attacks, security teams have very little or no time or resources to analyze threat information or go through files from different solutions to detect a problem. This is where automation comes in handy. But, automation is only possible if security solutions operate together and not in isolation.
Machine learning and AI are capable of enabling companies to identify, investigate, and respond to threats at digital speeds when all the tools function as a unified solution. Moreover, advanced management systems right from XDR to SIEM to SOAR systems for NOCs and SOCs improved remarkably when the individual devices they are controlling and managing, work together effectively.
Organizations cannot resolve the challenges they face today using traditional systems and strategies. Hence, security must adapt completely to the network it needs to protect. Security platforms should span the entire network and adapt as the environment it is protecting expands and evolves.
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