Network Security Management in the Cloud: 6 Security Pillars Your Business Needs

 

You wouldn’t secure a vault of gold bars with a padlock or entrust the Crown Jewels to a public storage locker. Data is an enterprise’s most valuable—and threatened—asset. As a result, Unified Threat Management (UTM) and network security is a top priority not only for enterprises, but the cloud networking providers that serve them. Despite this obvious need, many enterprises still opt for à la carte services and DIY products, the equivalent of an unarmed security guard against expert criminals.  Your data deserves better—and your customers require iron-clad network security. And, if that isn’t enough incentive, regulations such as Dodd-Frank, HIPAA or PCI require that your network meets stringent security standards.

Because cloud service providers host business critical communications services, applications and data, enterprises are increasingly looking to these providers for security solutions and expertise. Data breaches are costly both monetarily and in reputation, and threats are constant. Protecting sensitive data must constantly be top of mind.  As an enterprise service provider, we pay a special eye to evolving threats and the security enhancements that thwart them.

This time last year, Computerworld predicted that security, cloud computing, and analytics would lead IT spending this year in its 2015 Technology Forecast--with a 46% increase in security technologies alone this year.  If activity among our enterprise customers is any indication, Computerworld got it right. We are now delivering data that is the backbone of our customers’ operations. And, because of this, we are more focused on security than ever.  Because we build security into our network and apps, we help our customers save money and increase efficiency.

But not all providers are created equal, and not all security solutions are truly secure. As technology evolves, threats become increasingly sophisticated. In partnership with experts in security such as Cisco, Fortinet, Genband, Oracle, and Radware, we have developed a six pillar security strategy. Its design protects our customers’ sensitive data as it travels across our infrastructure—and serves as a good example of state-of-the-art security:

Six Pillars of Cloud Networking Security

  • Secure network access: First and foremost, enterprises must control access to networks and internal resources. Enterprises should select a cloud networking provider that offers certified security and that meets regulatory requirements.  In addition, secure access to internal network resources through a Virtual Private Network (VPN) ensures that only authorized users have access to network resources.
  • Enterprise Firewalls: As the basis for security infrastructure, hosted firewalls are a foundational component of defense. These firewalls must be built into the network, constantly managed and monitored, and constantly upgraded to deliver the highest level of protection.
  • Content Filtering and Unified Threat Management (UTM): Businesses face specific vulnerability through email, messaging, and web services on a minute-by-minute basis. Effective content filtering blocks access to harmful, inappropriate, and malicious websites, which significantly reduces these threats. Similarly, SPAM filtering blocks harmful email from reaching your internal clients, where it can do the most damage. Through accurate classification for web and email traffic, and subsequent policy-based protective action, you can be sure that your enterprise is safe to conduct business.
  • Intrusion Protection: In addition to hosted firewall, this advanced service protects critical business applications from external and internal attacks. The IDS module, with regular automatic updates to its threat signature database, blocks thousands of known and emerging threats, that typically evade conventional firewall defenses.
  • Antivirus: Businesses need real-time protection against current and future viruses, spywares, and other types of attacks. Our antivirus technology combines advanced signature and heuristic detection engines for multi-layered protection prior to threats reaching the inside network.
  • Application Control: Application control defines, manages, and enforces enterprise policies around your network resources. As thousands of applications compete for your bandwidth, application control services enforce policy to provide priority network access to business-critical apps while blocking unwanted network use.

Businesses cannot afford to ignore security—especially as they move more essential business processes to the cloud. By utilizing security solutions from cloud services provider experts, customers can gain all the benefits of complete security and analytics technologies and outsource the challenges of implementation and ongoing management.  To learn more about how NetFortris and our partners tackle today’s security challenges, please visit our website.

Tom Swayze
About the author: Thomas Swayze is the EVP Technology at NetFortris. Thomas has over 26 years of significant technology experience. He pioneered voice over frame and ATM technologies in the mid 1990’s and deployed one of the first Selsius (Cisco Call Manager) solutions. Prior to NetFortris, Thomas served as CTO at Telekenex.