The digital threat landscape continues to evolve with threat actors leveraging new tools and techniques to develop new ways of discovering and exploiting vulnerabilities, breaching networks, and stealing or compromising sensitive data. Throughout the ongoing fluidity, innovation, and development in the information security space, firewalls and secured networks remain a tried and tested first line of defense against threat actors. Firewalls have certainly evolved, with modern Next-Gen Firewalls boasting much more advanced and sophisticated capabilities than their packet-filtering and stateful ancestors.
Despite their established position as a cornerstone of effective security, Firewalls introduce several challenges, that for some IT (Information Technology) teams make them more of a burden than an asset. Large organizations have information environments that increase exponentially in complexity. Multiple networks, a plethora of devices, and continuous technology updates can make it increasingly hard for organizations to keep track of all their firewalls, and their associated rules and policies. Given the high workload, and risk of mistakes that could lead to security vulnerabilities or network outages, many organizations are looking for a solution to help them stay on top of their firewall challenges.
Managed Firewall (MFW) Services have become an increasingly attractive solution for organizations grappling with these challenges.
What is a Managed Firewall Service?
A Managed Firewall Service is a security solution offered by a third-party provider. MFW services can vary a lot from provider to provider, with different focuses and capabilities. However, at their core, MFW services include the configuration, administration, operation, monitoring, and maintenance of firewall systems. Here is a breakdown of common service components to expect or look for in a MFW solution:
- Configuration & Policy Management: Proper configuration is vital to prevent potential breaches. MFW services ensure that firewalls have clear and well-maintained policy rules that meet the organization’s specific needs. This includes defining access controls, filtering rules, and more.
- Security Monitoring: Continuous monitoring is essential to detect and respond to threats in real-time. MFW Services often include 24/7 monitoring to detect anomalous and unauthorized network activity and generate alerts to enable rapid and effective response.
- Reporting: MFW providers often supply detailed reports, offering insights into network activity, attempted breaches, and overall security performance. These reports help organizations understand the return on their security investment and make informed decisions.
- Device and Lifecycle Management: This encompasses daily backups, device policy and configuration management, managed firewall device updates, and more. Regular updates and backups ensure that the firewall is always equipped with the latest security features, minimizing vulnerabilities.
- Advanced Threat Protection: MFW providers typically have subject matter experts on staff with advanced knowledge of your firewall solutions and other key security areas. You can lean on their expertise to keep your security posture operational and suggest improvements and upgrades.
Why Consider Using Managed Firewall Services?
- Expertise: Cybersecurity is a specialized field, and not all organizations have the in-house expertise to manage complex firewall systems. MFW providers have teams of security experts, ensuring that the firewall is handled by professionals with the necessary skills and experience.
- Focus on Core Business: Security management can be time-consuming. With MFW, organizations can focus on delivering their services uninterrupted, knowing that their network is secure. This allows them to concentrate on growth and innovation, rather than constant security monitoring
- Cost-Effective: Building and maintaining an in-house team for firewall management can be expensive. By outsourcing this task, organizations can achieve significant cost savings without compromising on security quality.
- Compliance: Various industries have specific regulatory requirements related to cybersecurity. MFW helps in maintaining compliance, ensuring that the organization’s security posture aligns with industry standards and legal obligations.
- Scalability: MFW services can be tailored to fit the specific needs and size of the organization. Whether a small business or a large enterprise, MFW provides flexibility and scalability, adapting as the business grows.
Managed Firewall Services offer a comprehensive and professional approach to network security. By leveraging the expertise of specialized providers, organizations can enhance their security posture, focus on their core business functions, and achieve cost savings. If you would like to learn more about how a MFW service may help your organization’s security posture have a conversation with one of our experts