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Network firewalls aren't dead yet

Jaikumar Vijayan | March 6, 2014
After 20-plus years of service, the technology remains a core part of the IT security stack despite its long predicted demise.

"By leveraging visibility into endpoints, internal network traffic and the network edge, the technology can detect malware in places where other [products] cannot," Callahan said.

Over the next few years, new generation firewall technologies are likely to be integrated even further into the enterprises. Even advances like software defined networking are unlikely to diminish the need for firewalls, argues Jody Brazil, founder and CTO of security vendor FireMon.

"Nowhere have I seen anyone say that this increased move toward automation will eliminate the need for firewalls," says Brazil. "In fact, just as we've seen with virtualized networks, there will be an increased demand for firewall technologies to support both existing processes and some of these newly emerging models."

Trends like SDNs will not lead to the demise of the firewall but will reemphasize the need for them, he predicts. "Firewalls may not be sexy but they [are] the underlying backbone of all IT security infrastructure. And that's not changing anytime soon, if ever," Brazil said.


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