Global benchmarking study gives visibility into the security infrastructures of more than 400 organisations to find current and future trends for firewalls and emerging networking technologies
FireMon, the leader in Intelligent Security Management, today released its 3rd Annual State of the Firewall Report that surveyed more than 400 organisations about their current security infrastructure and management challenges as well as adoption and impact of emerging technologies such as SDN, cloud, microsegmentation and Internet of Things (IoT). The study found that firewalls maintain a significant part of the security infrastructure, with 90% believing the firewall will remain critical in the next five years; however, the growing complexity of environments presents a real management challenge.
Other Key Findings:
- 70 percent of survey respondents reported they have ten or more firewalls and two-thirds have multiple firewall vendors within the same environment.
- Complexity reigns as a top concern when it comes to firewalls, with rule optimisation, management for multiple types of firewalls and compliance and audit readiness as the next biggest concerns.
- 90 percent have adopted a cloud solution, but for more than one third of respondents, responsibility for cloud security falls outside of security operations, which adds an extra layer of complexity to security management.
- 67 percent have adopted or plan to adopt an SDN solution such as VMWare NSX®, Cisco ACI, OpenStack, Juniper Contrail or Brocade.
- Microsegmentation that breaks the datacenter into logical elements and manages them with high level IT security policies is a concern for 41% of the organisations surveyed.
“Nowadays, corporate network infrastructures not only consist of multiple vendor firewalls, they’re also leveraging cloud, Software Defined Networking (SDN), microsegmentation and IoT to keep up with an increasingly on-demand world. This compounds the complexity organizations already face,” said Jody Brazil, Co-Founder and Chief Product Strategist at FireMon. “If the way we’re looking at networking is changing, the way we look at managing security must change as well. Otherwise, security risks being left behind.”
Moreover, the report showed that only 7% of large enterprises (15,000+ employees) fully automate their firewall change process, with 60% admitting to tracking changes manually via Word documents, emails or spreadsheets.
“Automation of change processes can be a lifesaver in particular for larger organisations that have many devices, often from different vendors, under management and limited resources to make the changes,” continued Brazil. “The complexity of security environments is growing at such a rate that organisations need to get on top of management and automate processes where possible sooner rather than later, before it becomes unmanageable.”
The report shows that regardless of the networking environment, firewalls support it all. For a majority of organisations, a least a quarter of their security budgets are dedicated to them, showing that the firewall is a key component of their security solution.
The full report is available here.