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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 04, 2015Firewall Rule Management: Curing Technical Complexity

As editor-in-chief at DevOps.com, I spend a lot of time speaking with organizations about their operations. One of the most consistent themes I hear is that with today’s infrastructure – whether it’s related to code, cloud and virtual environments, on and off-premises, big data or application-centric – the complexity of managing and orchestrating IT is a difficult, if not impossible task.

There’s no doubt that this is most certainly the case with all the aforementioned factors to consider and, respective of that, all the moving parts in modern IT environments. However, I also try to remind people that this is a similar scenario to the realities we have dealt with in managing firewall rules for many years.

When I first started in security last century (not as long ago as that sounds), it was common for an organization to have a firewall or two, maybe even four if they were a really big shop. These firewalls always lived at the perimeter, and truthfully they were relatively simple devices. They could block traffic based on what port it was coming in or out of, and what IP address it was coming from, or going to.

That all sounds pretty simple but even then, in the hands of a network admin or two, the amount of rules that would pile up on top of each other over time would become astounding. Pretty soon you’d have a complex web of policies on your hands, much like the tangled mess wires found inside a data center.

firemon-curing-complexityOf course, as firewalls started to proliferate across the network, internally as well as at the border, this situation only grew worse. On top of this, firewalls themselves grew increasingly more complex and the rules you could set became more sophisticated. Layer the rapid employee turnover typical within many IT departments on top of this, and things began to get out of control. Within 18 months you could have rules that were put in place two or three admins ago, leaving the present admins with no clue as to why those rules were even there. Eventually, something had to bring order to this rapidly-scaling Tower of Babel.

Thankfully, driven by this reality, along came solutions like FireMon Security Manager The value proposition of FireMon was pretty straightforward, addressing this operational nightmare and giving practitioners something to help to make the overly complex firewall rules management process simple.

With this innovation, admins could now see what rules they had to address - and maybe even why they were there in the first place - then change them, delete them or enforce them, selectively or not. Eventually, you were able to automate firewall policy monitoring in general, and that brought a whole new approach to larger issues of network security management too.

Fast-forward to the current environment, where it’s not uncommon to find enterprise environments with hundreds of firewalls, where all of those evolving IT management paradigms that I listed are advancing rapidly. Without automated solutions, it’s hard to image how we could even begin to manage a world where organizations have to consider thousands, if not tens of thousands of extremely complex firewall rules and policies.

The folks in IT operations need to consider all of this and take heart, because the evolution of firewall management has proven that it is possible to manage complexity, with the reality that firewalls are still promulgating everywhere as living proof that tackling what may seem hopeless today, will become conceivable.

The truth is, while addressing today’s cloud-sprawling, continent-spanning IT infrastructure appears even more complicated than management of firewall rules at first blush, I’m confident that the market will respond with tools to make this all seem relatively simple someday.

I see this as a great market opportunity that several solutions are already seeking to answer. I don’t know which solution or set of solutions will eventually win, but I do know that it will have to thank tools like FireMon for showing us how to make the once seemingly impossible, possible.

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.
Register
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.
Register
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