Traditional Firewalls vs Next-Generation Firewalls – Reasons to Upgrade
March 27, 2017
Posted in: Technology
Why do you need a next-generation firewall, when you already have a traditional firewall in place? The short answer: With new technology comes better security. But what does that really mean for you?
Limited capabilities and best effort traffic identification
Traditional firewalls can only deny or allow traffic based on IP addresses, port numbers and protocols. This method does not positively identify what the traffic really is and whether it has legitimate intentions on your network and should be trusted.
Plus, IP addresses change all the time. So, if you’re using a traditional firewall, attempting to identify and manage traffic this way can lead to firewalls with 10,000 plus rules—which is very difficult to manage.
Even with all of these rules in place, traditional firewalls tend to not be as secure as they need to be.
Added flexibility, control and efficiency
Next-generation firewalls are more intelligent and can recognize an application or website regardless of IP address or port numbers. The advanced filtering technology looks deep inside packets to determine what kind of application it is and who is sending it, and can make intelligent decisions about which content and packets to block.
With next-generation firewalls, you can also customize the filters to block by URL, content-type (e.g. gambling/pornography/drugs), risk-level, geographic location—you name it. This gives you a lot of power and flexibility in how you want to manage access, and how protected you are against threats.
Continuous threat updates = better protection
The next-generation firewalls also include powerful anti-virus and malware protection that is continually and automatically updated as new threats and vulnerabilities are discovered. The firewall can detect if there is hidden malware, and vulnerabilities on the network the malware could exploit.
Nuvodia’s solutions include Cisco’s Firepower Threat Defense firewalls and Fortinet’s FortiGate firewalls. Both solutions have their own security intelligence labs that continually update their firewalls with developing threats and vulnerabilities discovered out in the wild on the internet.
A recent example is the “WannaCry” virus attack that has already affected more than 200,000 computers in more than 150 countries so far. The Cisco and Fortinet labs both detected these attacks in the early stages and sent updates to their next-generation firewalls, successfully blocking the attacks.
Out with the Old. In with the New.
Next-generation firewalls can help ensure the integrity and privacy of your data, and availability of the network and services critical to your business. Our team at Nuvodia can help you transition from a traditional firewall to a more secure, adaptable and efficient next-generation firewall.
Learn more about Nuvodia’s IT Security services.
By Tara Essary, Nuvodia Senior Network Engineer/Architect