Security-driven networking: Automated, integrated, adaptive

Jon McGettigan, Senior Regional Director, Fortinet ANZ

The most effective way to protect your network is through consistent security. Digital transformation is changing the very nature of your network. Users can be located anywhere, applications can be hosted anywhere and data can be stored everywhere. Infrastructure can be physical or virtual. And you can purchase, lease or outsource network capabilities. The only constant amongst all of this is the need for security.

Any security event in this complex, finely-balanced operation can have a devastating impact. Your challenge is to provide consistent security across the entire network, regardless of location, device, application or user.

Automated SOAR

Today’s networks operate at breakneck speed. Too fast, in fact, for humans to keep up. Whilst manual intervention is essential for high-end planning and trouble-shooting (usually to rectify human error), most everyday networking tasks, such as configuring, provisioning, managing and testing, can be automated using Network Operations Centre (NOC) tools.

The same is true for security. With a comprehensive and adaptable Security Fabric, you can build automation into your procedures to help better protect and prevent against known threat actors entering your network. Then you can isolate the threat and deploy actionable intelligence against it.

Known as SOAR (security orchestration, automation and response), the process is predicated upon having total interconnectivity amongst security devices, real-time threat detection and a unified security policy consistent across the network. This is the key benefit of an over-all security fabric.

Integrated

Security is not an add-on. It has to be deeply-embedded into your entire network operation. Take SD-WAN (software-defined wide area networking) for instance. Most SD-WAN offerings offer networking capabilities and have to work in conjunction with a security package to protect branch offices. That’s two vendors, two operating systems and two sets of experts to keep the traffic moving. SOAR becomes problematic.

Fortinet’s Secure SD-WAN solution simplifies this arrangement by integrating both SD-WAN and security into one appliance. This helps reduce business risk and total cost of ownership.

Digital transformation is giving you the opportunity to upgrade, standardise and integrate a security fabric from a single vendor to replace your legacy solutions.

Adaptable

The only constant in your digital transformation is change. The cloud, software-defined networking, automation and managed services have all had a huge impact on the market in the last few years. Unfortunately, adversaries are using these same tools to steal, corrupt or disrupt your data and applications. Your best defence is to extend your consistent security policy into your network at every stage of development.

A security fabric with a set of security APIs, scripts and connectors enables your DevOps teams to include security at every step of your network development process, regardless of which way the technology evolves. Adaptable security reduces the risk of any gaps opening up in your network as you transform your network to embrace digital innovation.

Managed security services

Consistent security requires constant management, automated or manual. It is the rare enterprise indeed that has all of the internal resources to keep ahead of adversaries. In Australia there is a growing ecosystem of ‘visionary’ managed security service providers (MSSPs) that offer the complete Fortinet Security Fabric on a pay-as-you-go operational expense basis.

This security procurement model reduces initial start-up costs, provides immediate protection and minimises the in-house requirement for security specialists. Plus it provides the foundation for a consistent policy that can be extended as appropriate.

Conclusion

Adversaries are smarter than ever. It is imperative for today’s CISO to build security orchestration, automation and response directly into their security architecture to better protect their business and help reduce their exposure to risk.

SOAR is a good place to start. But before you can go down that path you need an automated, integrated and adaptable security fabric. Fortinet is simplifying the process, making that fabric available in a myriad of delivery models that can have an immediate impact.

Adversaries are using the latest tools for more targeted attacks. You need to be up-to-date as well. The opportunity is right now for you to integrate the Fortinet Security Fabric into your security profile and help reduce your exposure to risk.

About Fortinet

Fortinet (NASDAQ: FTNT) secures the largest enterprise, service provider, and government organisations around the world. Fortinet empowers its customers with intelligent, seamless protection across the expanding attack surface and the power to take on ever-increasing performance requirements of the borderless network – today and into the future. Only the Fortinet Security Fabric architecture can deliver security without compromise to address the most critical security challenges, whether in networked, application, cloud or mobile environments. Fortinet ranks #1 in the most security appliances shipped worldwide and more than 375,000 customers trust Fortinet to protect their businesses. Learn more at http://www.fortinet.com, the Fortinet Blog, or FortiGuard Labs.

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