Feb. 2017

Datanet and Cisco have recently organized “The latest news and strategy on Cisco cybersecurity”. During the event, the two companies explained the advantages brought by Fire Power Threat Defense and the practical forms of migration to the new firewalls generation, together with the latest news within the Cisco security portfolio.

First part of the workshop was covered by Alexandru Nacea and Octavian SzolgaSenior Security Consultants at Datanet, with a presentation about the evolution of the Adaptive Security Appliance (ASA) and FirePower solutions into the unified concept, FirePower Threat Defense, with emphasis on the new approach. Octavian Szolga explained the benefits resulted when integrating FirePower functionalities with ASA firewalls, insisting on the advantages offered by Next-Generation Intrusion Prevention System (NGIPS) services that allow setting correlation rules according to the existing information.” With NGIPS services we can find information regarding users’ identity, operating systems or about the applications installed on the end points. Given this information and by integrating with NGFW functionalities, we can, for example to identify the users and to give them permission or block their access to several applications based on authentication or affiliation to different groups with designated rights” stated Octavian Szolga.

ASA with Fire Power Services is now giving the permission to view the applications at a client level, it can monitor, analyze and filter traffic depending on the applications type and/or by user’s identity. By syncing with the data bases on the applications’ vulnerabilities it can be determined what stations categories are about to be the victims of some attacks. The system can recommend automatically IPS rules, signalizing what upgrades are needed, the administrator having the freedom to accept or not the suggested modifications that can be revised before the approval.  The portfolio services is completed with functionalities like Security Intelligence, DNS Policies, URL Filtering, Advanced Malware Protection etc.

The main new feature that FirePower Threat Defense brings is that we no longer need to use different systems for ASA and FirePower, or to use separate configurations and correlations. FTD is a platform that unifies ASA and FirePower functionalities, both hardware and software, offering one single solution with one single image that combined in a unique operating system. From this perspective, FTD is considered to be the future of the Next Generation Firewall security solutions” explained Alexandru Nacea.

FTD uses just one single administration console (FirePower Management Center – out of the box management solution, which can be delivered as a separate virtual machine or dedicated equipment) that integrates all SourceFire features and, in a near future, it will offer a 1:1 correlation of all ASA functionalities. (The FTD roadmap includes the following features: Remote access VPN, SSL hardware acceleration, Multi Context mode.)

Now, FirePower Threat Defense system can be developed for the Cisco Firepower 4100 and Firepower 9300 equipment series, even for ASA 5000 X serie. (The compatibile models are ASA 5506-X, ASA 5506H-X, ASA 5506W-X, ASA 5508-X, ASA 5512-X, ASA 5515-X, ASA 5516-X, ASA 5525-X, ASA 5545-X si ASA 5555-X, dar nu si ASA 5505 si 5585-X.)

To make the transition easier to FirePower Threat Defense, Cisco delivers a migration tool that enables the conversion of ASA’s specific functionalities in others, equivalent for FTD configuration. (After the conversion, Cisco recommends to manually complete the migration process by adjusting and setting the additional policies that FTD offers.)

Cisco introduced FirePower Threat Defence with a new “Smart Licensing” system that, unlike the old one, is no longer bound to a specific Serial Number or Product Authorization Key (PAK) and offers the possibility to a centralized management of all licensees within a client account.

In the second part of the workshop, Datanet specialists have presented the main updates for the next Cisco solutions: Identity Security Engine (ISE), Adaptive Security Appliance (ASA), Web Security Appliance (WSA) si Email Security Appliance (ESA).

Additionally, James WhethersbyCisco Technical Marketing Engineers Director, has depicted the latest novelties in terms of company’s security strategy that have been announced during Cisco Live 2017 in Berlin, emphasizing on Cisco Umbrella, a solution made to answer the necessities of the mobile employees. “The adoption of mobility and Cloud Services in enterprise area have changed radically the way we work. At present, 49% of the global working force is mobile and the use of Software-as-a-Service model reached an increased rate of 70%. Even so, 82% of the mobile users admit that they do not use VPN connectivity when they want to connect from the outside to the company’s resources.” accentuated James Whethersby. Delivered as a Cloud service, Cisco Umbrella monitors the traffic on the mobile devices and blocks automatically the access to network domains, URL addresses and IPs that are being detected as a threat, or accesses the files with a risk potential.

The latest news and strategy on Cisco cybersecurity” workshop organized by Datanet in partnership with Cisco was addressed to all companies that need capable security solutions that can deliver a complete protection against threats, increases the reaction speed and simplifies the management process. The aim of the event was to present competent solutions and information to the current problems, by from,   organizations can increase their level of security. “Being the main Cisco partner in Romania, Datanet can offer a vast solutions portfolio according to clients’ needs, having the competences and certifications that are a must for the companies that want to develop an integrated security infrastructure, capable to ensure an expanded protection. In addition, the experience we have achieved after managing many projects in about 20 years of activity, recommends us to have the knowledge in this crucial domain.” stated Gabriel Musat, Deputy Executive Director at Datanet Systems.

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