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Get to know us better! Gain valuable insights into how we think by visiting our blog, or take a look at the industry events we're frequenting on our events page. You can also geek out with us by attending one of our security management webinars, or dive head first into the products and solutions we provide in our Resource Library. There's lots to keep you busy! 

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Blog

May 19, 2017 A Practical History of the Firewall - Part 1: Early Days
As a practitioner in the relatively early days of the mass adoption of the Internet (mid to late 90s), I saw the rapid adoption and evolution of firewall technology. I had a limited view, and certainly have an imperfect memory, of this history. As such, over the next few posts, I welcome your comments to help me fill in the missing pieces of this story.
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May 02, 2017 Breaking down the 2017 Verizon Data Breach Investigation Report
Verizon’s infamous Data Breach Investigations Report (DBIR) came out last week. It’s a testament to the diverse data Verizon now has that this year’s report is separated out by industry. In other words, more industries are seeing attacks and it allows the data to be divided and still hold merit. A few findings stood out to me as worthy of a deeper look...
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Jun 07, 2011Documenting Firewall Rules

For years, firewall managers have been required to justify why a firewall rule was added to the rule base. In the past, lots of us met that requirement by putting the change control ticket number in the “comments” column of the rule. That method worked for a while, but now that regulations like PCI and NERC require firewall managers to produce the full documentation multiple times a year, we need a new answer – one that does not require days of manpower. One that will survive the next time we change ticket systems (and yes, we will change ticket systems… again).

Why Document?

As security professionals, we don’t hold the responsibility for the risk that any access poses, the business leaders do.  But we are responsible for advising on risks that are incurred and presenting the information on why our risk posture is the way it is.

So, explaining our access in terms that the business can understand is critical.  If all that we know is a technical definition (like some internet IP address has access to some internal server using SSH), we don’t know very much.  But, if we capture the justification for why that rule was put in, then we know “a consultant needs remote access to patch a critical application vulnerability.”

The second example shows the information our businesses need to make good risk decisions. It also gives us the information we need to ask the right technical questions, like, “Does that consultant still require access?”

Spreadsheets & Databases Don’t Work

I know a lot of companies have been documenting their firewall rules with spreadsheets and databases.  Those are good point solutions, but they don’t scale for two big reasons: the rules move around, and the updates are still manual.

Firewall rules move, so tracking them based on rule number or position does not work.  If you’ve tried this and created documentation, and then revisited that documentation a month later, you can barely recognize the work because the rule base has changed so drastically.

The manual nature of spreadsheets and databases is problematic as well.  Updates are often made as an afterthought at end of the change process. These manual updates are difficult to enforce as integral parts of the change process, and so they remain inconsistent afterthoughts.

FireMon Does

FireMon knows that good documentation is the cornerstone of firewall management.  Making a decision about when to keep access in place or take it out is rarely a purely technical decision. Easily and quickly knowing who that access supports and what the access is providing is the basis for making any good decision.

FireMon’s solution integrates with the appropriate data sources (like change management and vendor administration tools) so that you can create documentation naturally, inside of a normal business process.  It tracks the rules as they move up and down the rule base and keeps the documentation tagged to the right rule.  And it fully reports on the data, including identifying those changes that were not documented.

From my experience, spreadsheets can’t fully report on anything. If yours can’t either, learn more about FireMon’s rule documentation capabilities at http://www.firemon.com/ruledocumentation.aspx.

With nearly two decades of broad industry experience in network security, firewall operations and network management, Matt Dean serves as Vice President of Product Strategy at FireMon. Matt has spent ten years at FireMon working with enterprise, federal and service provider customers to build and refine network security risk processes, and speaking on industry best practices for network security posture and risk management. Prior to joining FireMon, Matt served as a Communications Officer in the US Air Force with an emphasis on operational network management.

Events

Webinars

Upcoming Webinars

Jun 06, 2017 2:00 pm - 3:00 pm PDT Top 5 Risks of "Dirty" Firewalls
Firewall rules are notoriously complex and voluminous in nature. Even small organizations have multiple firewalls and significant complexity. But large organizations are overwhelmed.
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May 23, 2017 2:00 pm - 3:00 pm PDT Der Countdown läuft, noch 365 Tage bis zur DSGVO (GDPR): Machen Sie Ihr Netzwerk fit für Compliance
Netzwerksicherheit ist deutlich mehr als Cyberbedrohungen nur zu stoppen. Es geht auch darum für das Unvermeidliche gerüstet zu sein. Nämlich einen Datenschutzvorfall, den die Technik allein nicht hat verhindern können. Die EU Datenschutz-Grundverordnung (kurz DSGVO GDPR) ist, neben anderen mehr, ein solches Compliance-Rahmenwerk mit dem Unternehmen sich auseinandersetzen müssen und das im Mai des kommenden Jahres in Kraft tritt. Dann sind Unternehmen beispielsweise verpflichtet innerhalb von 72 Stunden nach einem Datenschutzvorfall darüber zu informieren.
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May 04, 2017 Threat Hunting: Beyond Alerts & IOCs
Organizations are taking a more active role in detecting and responding to advanced attacks – Threat Hunting. In this webinar, you’ll discover the steps you can take to launch your threat hunting capabilities.
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Apr 27, 2017 The Life of a Firewall: Seamless, Automated Rule Lifecycle Management

So you’ve purchased a new firewall. Now what?

You’ve got to decide which access is allowed, which isn’t allowed and whether or not rules are compliant with internal and regulatory standards.

Things are running along smoothly and then the dreaded “change.” A user submits a new access request and the fun begins. Is this access necessary? Safe? Compliant? And what happens when it’s time to retire unused rules?

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Apr 19, 2017 Closing the Complexity Gap

How Effective Security Management Can Help Teams Cover the Exponentially Increasing Gap between Technology & the Resources Available to Manage It

Security teams today are under tremendous pressure due to the rising frequency and impact of breaches and a business that wants to move faster and faster. The answer to both of these challenges has always been to add more technology and staff resources.

However, each new technology added creates complexity. More rules are created and more data is generated. As networks continue to evolve, this complexity will only grow. And while staff resources may increase, they will never match the exponential growth of technology.

FireMon calls this phenomenon The Complexity Gap and has set out to help security teams close it.

Join us for this webinar with Frost & Sullivan where we’ll explore the causes of “The Gap” and how workforce multipliers such as intelligence and automation help staff manage their security more efficiently and more effectively.

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Mar 30, 2017 Data Orchestration for Incident Response
The biggest challenge security teams face when it comes to the alert triage process is preparing the data for analysis. Analysts can spend 80% of their time or more just to assemble the data to answer the question of whether an alert is a false positive or real incident.

Immediate orchestrates the data assembly process, freeing up critical time and resources to actually respond to identified events.

Join us for this webinar to learn how you can streamline the incident response process by orchestrating data assembly from a variety of disparate, external sources, including:
- FireMon Security Manager
- Palo Alto Networks AutoFocus
- VirusTotal
- Packet Capture
- Threat Intelligence Feeds
- And more!
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News




Resource Library

Audit Compliance

Datasheets

Policy Change

Solution Briefs

Policy Change

White Papers

Visibility Monitoring Management

Analyst Reports

Security Manager
Overview of FireMon’s Flagship Firewall Management Solution
Policy Planner
Overview of FireMon’s Change Automation Solution
Policy Optimizer
Overview of FireMon’s Rule Recertification Automation Solution
Risk Analyzer
Overview of FireMon’s Attack Simulation and Risk Measurement Solution
Immediate Insight
Overview of FireMon’s Immediate Insight Solution
Intelligent Security Management
Delivering next-generation security management that boosts productivity and accelerates the agility of business
Intelligent Policy Automation
Intelligent Policy Automation: Orchestrating Change Management with Speed and Security.
Hybrid Cloud Management
Visibility into and control over Cloud Services, including AWS and OpenStack Platforms
Accelerated Incident Response
Immediate Insight in action - Orchestration, automation and analytics for data assembly and discovery
Change Simulation & Risk Scoring
Proactively reduce risk based upon network exposure and host accessibility
2017 State of the Firewall
Networking continues to evolve, yet the firewall remains critical to securing today’s enterprises. FireMon is proud to present its 3rd Annual State of the Firewall Report
Firewall Cleanup
The implications of firewall policy complexity, why it remains a problem today and how to resolve it.
Real-Time Risk Analysis
Risk analysis with real-time change configuration is key to managing security risks in your IT infrastructure.
Real-Time Data Triage
Our Immediate Insight platform from FireMon can help organizations overcome the limitations and gaps inherent to the current analytic market.
Bridging the SIEM Alert Triage Gap
Immediate Insight enables security teams to improve event triage and incident response, extending the value of your existing full-featured SIEM.
Intelligent Policy Automation
Automation Isn’t One-Size-Fits-All
Intelligent Security Management

Helping Enterprise Security Teams Improve Resource Efficiency & Reduce Overall Risk Exposure

2016 State of the Firewall
2nd Annual State of the Firewall Report based on survey of 600 IT security practitioners.
The Top 5 Myths of Data Breaches
Five of the biggest myths that exist about data breaches, and explain how and why they occur.
Firewall Sprawl: Top Four Security Gaps Exposed

Firewall technology has come a long way since its initial, most rudimentary forms. Next-Generation Firewalls (NGFW) are the latest development, and organizations are accelerating adoption to the new technology. But NGFWs aren’t a fix-all solution.

Firewall Sprawl: How Complexity Is Adding Cost & Increasing Risk
Aberdeen
Quantifying the value of Intelligent Security Management
Aberdeen
Security Analytics Brings Data-Driven Security Into the 21st Century
Forrester
Automate Zero Trust Policy And Enforcement
Forrester
The Return on Security analysis for FireMon’s Security Manager
IANS