Cisco has added to its security portfolio with a firewall that focuses on threat defence rather than controlling application security.
Firepower is described as a "next-generation" firewall designed to target any form of cyber attack regardless of vector.
This is different from legacy firewalls that aim to ring-fence individual applications rather than address a threat across a machine or an entire network.
Cisco compared it to protecting access to an entire home rather than individually securing windows or doors.
The company claimed that this approach secures everything from applications and networks to cloud services beyond the reach of traditional firewalls by using an intrusion prevention system, advanced malware protection and reputation-based URL filtering.
Cisco also claimed an industry first with Firepower as it provides contextual information based on threat intelligence and policy enforcement on how users connect to applications.
Firepower acts as a unifying platform that integrates with third-party security products, according to Cisco, and can extract data from a variety of sources to provide more visibility on potential threats.
Customers can automate and tweak security measures to strengthen cyber defences based on information about threats, vulnerabilities and network assets.
David Goeckeler, general manager of the Security Business Group at Cisco, explained that this approach allows Firepower to combat security threats in real time.
“The result is better protection, and faster detection and response to advanced threats,” he said.
A Management Centre provides a single console that pulls in all the threat intelligence and contextual data extracted by Firepower.
This makes use of integrated third-party security tools, such as Radware for denial-of-service attacks, and avoids forcing customers to jump between multiple application consoles to gain access to information.
Cisco also announced the Security Segmentation Service, a customised security framework to help secure infrastructure against security threats while ensuring that compliance and audit profiles are effectively managed.
It is no surprise that Cisco is building out its security portfolio and concentrating on products that go beyond the capabilities of normal firewalls, particularly as security is now a top priority at board level owing to fears of breaches.
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