IT Brief New Zealand - Technology news for CIOs & IT decision-makers
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Securing complex networks with a unified security fabric
Fri, 29th Nov 2019
FYI, this story is more than a year old

Digital transformation (DX) adds value and functionality to your business.

You can add or delete network services on-demand, move and edit data faster amongst nodes and provide unprecedented access into network resources from a growing variety of end-user devices.

But this added functionality expands the attack surface and introduces more business risk.

Your challenge is to deploy security services in parallel as you expand and extend your network.

In addition, your security services have to be flexible enough to protect any network service at any time, regardless of location (cloud, in-house or hybrid), form factor (physical or virtual), application (web, in-house or shadow IT) or process (Dev/Ops).

Plus each security service has to be 100% interoperable with all of the others with unified management, consistent policies, real-time threat intelligence and – most importantly - a common approach to reduce the time to detect, investigate and remediate malicious attacks.

In short, you need full-spectrum security services that protect every network service when you need them.

Inconsistent networks? Consistent security

You didn't buy your network services from a single source all at once.

You've built up your network over time.

You have your own in-house equipment, might have gear in a co-location data center and contract with cloud and managed services providers.

You buy off-the-shelf software, modify the code or develop your own apps.

You even have network services you don't know about (Shadow IT).

And all of the above need to be monitored, upgraded and patched.

But that's absolutely normal.

Every enterprise operates heterogeneous networks.

And all the components work together to provide consistent network services.

But security services are less forgiving.

Heterogeneous or point security services from multiple vendors can leave gaps between network services.

Implementing SOAR (security orchestration, automation and response) amongst multiple security services can be problematic.

And managing upgrades, threat intelligence and licensing terms and fees can be a nightmare.

The only practical solution to secure disparate, dispersed and decentralised network services is with consistent security services featuring a common operating system and common policy. Anything else can lead to unacceptable risk.

On-demand security services

Your network is in a constant state of flux.

Traffic patterns vary. User numbers go up and down. Devices and apps come and go. Software is ever-evolving.

But the fact remains: You need consistent security services regardless of which way your network evolves.

With on-demand security services, you'll have the flexibility you need to throw protection where it is needed, when it is needed.

For instance, during a Dev/Ops project you can incorporate security service APIs directly into the testing process.

Or you can add security services to remote sensors to secure your IoT initiatives.

Or you can generate analytics reports to comply with increasingly stringent regulations.

And, best of all, on-demand, full-spectrum security services are available right now in New Zealand from a growing network of visionary managed security service providers.


As networks get more complex, securing them can become more difficult.

And you only get one chance to get it right.

A single, unified, full-spectrum Security Fabric, available on demand, is quickly becoming the preferred approach for savvy CIOs.

One vendor, one point of contact, one management dashboard, one operating system and one set of SOAR procedures.

Anything else is simply too hard and too risky.

And the sooner you standardise your security services, the sooner you can expand your network services and take advantage of the benefits of digital transformation.

About the author

Jon McGettigan is Senior Regional Director, Fortinet ANZ. As such, he is responsible for driving Fortinet's continued expansion in the Australasian region through building and maintaining relationships with enterprises, partners and staff. As a senior executive, he understands the risks, motivations and opportunities that face executives as they transform their networks into 21st-century revenue centres.

About Fortinet

Fortinet (NASDAQ: FTNT) secures the largest enterprise, service provider, and government organisations around the world. Fortinet empowers its customers with intelligent, seamless protection across the expanding attack surface and the power to take on ever-increasing performance requirements of the borderless network - today and into the future. Only the Fortinet Security Fabric architecture can deliver security without compromise to address the most critical security challenges, whether in networked, application, cloud or mobile environments. Fortinet ranks #1 in the most security appliances shipped worldwide and more than 375,000 customers trust Fortinet to protect their businesses. Learn more at the Fortinet website, the Fortinet Blog, or FortiGuard Labs.

Fortinet Security Insights is a series of hard-hitting discussions of trends in the cybersecurity world, how they will affect your enterprise and what you should be doing to prepare for digital transformation.