Firewalls still at the heart of network security infrastructure

Firewalls are still at the heart of the network security infrastructure, but will have to evolve if they are to stay relevant, a new report by network security management company FireMon says.

The report, entitled 2016 State of the Firewall Report, highlights three major trends:

  • Firewalls are extremely important
  • Next-generation firewalls (NGFW) continue to see broad adoption
  • The impact SDN (software-defined networking) has on network security is becoming more obvious

“We’re seeing small shifts in IT professionals’ perceptions of the firewall as new technologies enter the market,” said Jody Brazil, co-founder and Chief Product Strategy Officer at FireMon. “Adoption of SDN and network virtualisation in general won’t decrease the need for firewalls, but it may open the door to advancements or a new category of network protection. It will be more of a continuous evolution rather than a complete upheaval as so many are quick to claim.”

Out of 600 IT security practitioners which were polled as part of the survey, 91 per cent say firewalls are as critical as ever to their company’s security architecture, and the same percentage think this won’t change in the next five years. As for NGFWs, they represent approximately 50 per cent of current firewall infrastructure in almost half of the companies surveyed.

This represents a significant jump, knowing that last year, the percentage was at 34. Moreover, there is just 6.7 per cent of companies with no NGFWs.

Nine out of ten IT security practitioners polled said they are aware of the impact SDN has on their network.

The full FireMon report can be found on this link.