Firewalls are one of the most well-known tools in the landscape of cybersecurity and have remained a regular fixture for professionals in network security for many years.

Even though cybersecurity has considerably advanced since the firewalls were first developed, the importance of firewalls in an organization remains crucial. Rather than becoming obsolete, it has begun to evolve in the new security landscape of the modern world. 

Application-based security policies are a good place to observe the evolution of firewalls. One of the biggest changes in the use of firewalls is how they inspect traffic and enable IT, teams, to provide superior security for access policies to modern users.

Previously, firewalls may have updated their features to stay abreast of the continuous network change. The issue now is in the way firewalls are fitting into the current reality where there are no perimeters, and the cloud comes first.

Why Do Firewalls Have to Evolve?

With the cloud becoming more advanced, an increasing number of organizations are moving their networks, resources, and even their employees to it. The cloud provides much more efficient networking by simplifying both data storage and connection rather than the hardware. Businesses relying on that are now outdated.

Because of this, organizations have been forced to look for network security elsewhere, because firewalls on their own are no longer capable of dealing with cloud-adoption problems.

However, the evolution of firewalls in terms of what they can offer has ensured that they can remain a crucial part of the hybrid cloud-security strategies. The firewalls being offered by vendors are capable of:

  • Offering full network visibility  
  • Monitoring across the cloud as well as the on-premises environment
  • Allowing access control management

Vendors are also increasingly offering extra features to stay up to date, which is what has resulted in FWaaS – the notion of a Firewall as a Service.

The Firewall as a Service (FWaaS)

With companies moving their whole infrastructures into cloud-based environments, the firewalls need to be able to go with them. The idea of moving the entire network infrastructure of an organization including its security to the cloud to be used as a service is known as FWaaS.

This replaces the necessity of network appliances and hardware, and usually involves offerings, including layer three to seven capabilities such as advanced threat protection, intrusion prevention, URL filtering, DNS security, and zero-trust access controls.

The adoption of an FWaaS is to allow IT, teams, to get rid of firewall appliances that are outdated and simplify the security and networking infrastructure of their organizations. Organizations are losing their dependency on HQ appliances as well as security that is onsite-centric and moving to a security model that is more user-centric and can offer multi-regional service throughout the cloud.

 FWaaS is of vital importance to this idea as it helps companies to maintain confidence in their security regardless of where their users are connecting from.

Remote Working and The Future of Firewalls

With cloud and mobility-enabling organizations to create a more remote workforce, security must be able to move to the areas it is most needed. SaaS solutions have become critical to business flows and with products being increasingly required to be consumed as a service, the FWaaS industry is advancing quickly.

Some organizations have recently been doubling down on their current appliances and firewalls infrastructures for the sake of supporting and sustaining their increase in remote users. Such companies need to realize that cloud and mobility are not going anywhere and that more innovative and sustainable solutions need to be sought to fit this new world.

The Way Forward

Organizations should do advanced research before adopting an FWaaS. It is important to recognize the different capabilities provided by this solution before deciding if it is appropriate for them.

Because some organizations may be better served to adopt a solution that can provide both cloud and local integration to achieve full network visibility.

IT teams that have chosen an FWaaS should also pre-plan and prepare their firewall rules. Having firewall security rules set up in advance will make it easier to apply them to new users, devices, and traffic sources to achieve a more scalable approach. 

AppTrana from Indusface offers companies a managed FWaaS solution to monitor the traffic of their changing networks and gain a foothold in the security of the future


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