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Palo Alto Networks announces advancements to its Next-Generation Security Platform

Palo Alto Networks announced advancements to its Next-Generation Security Platform that extend the ability for customer organizations to enable applications, including SaaS options, content and users regardless of location; prevent cyberattacks; simplify security operations; and embrace the cloud.

Palo Alto Networks announced advancements to its Next-Generation Security Platform that extend the ability for customer organizations to enable applications, including SaaS options, content and users regardless of location; prevent cyberattacks; simplify security operations; and embrace the cloud.

Security demands have evolved as new requirements and risks are introduced, especially as organizations expand their IT architecture from traditional networks and data centers to private and public or hybrid cloud deployments. The addition of SaaS application usage to the mix, and the need to secure all these architectures against threats and adversary techniques being used to gain access to assets and data regardless of where they are located – the network, in the cloud, or in SaaS applications – and organizations have a multitude of complex security and operational challenges to address to prevent cyber breaches and achieve the cloud speed and agility promise.

Traditional detect-and-respond approaches, cloud-only security capabilities, and siloed point products offer limited functionality and lack threat context from the network edge or at the user interface. This makes these options ineffective and administratively burdensome; causes holes in an organization’s security posture; and hinders operational agility, especially in cloud deployments.

The natively engineered Palo Alto Networks Next-Generation Security Platform addresses all these challenges by “delivering rich context from multiple points across all IT environments to provide consistent levels of visibility, management and security controls regardless of data location – from the network to the data center and private cloud, in the public cloud, or within SaaS applications,” Palo Alto Networks said.

Building upon existing capabilities in the platform, new advancements included in the Palo Alto Networks platform operating system, PAN-OS version 8.0, Aperture SaaS security service, and new VM-Series virtual firewall models address security needs by extending protections from physical networks to the cloud, further simplifying security operations and infrastructure.

Palo Alto Networks has integrated more than 70 new cloud and SaaS features in this next-generation security platform.

The PAN-OS 8.0 feature highlights including:

  • Expanded security for public and private clouds, including optimized workflow automation features and integration with native cloud services that ensure the same security measures for a customer’s physical environment can be applied to Amazon Web Services, Microsoft Azure, or any other cloud. The cloud capabilities enable secure, scalable and resilient cloud-centric architectures with easy orchestration and management for operational agility.
  • New SaaS application security capabilities, including visibility and interactive dashboards, new reporting, and automated features like instant quarantine and data sharing limitations. These features increase security, real-time monitoring and compliance enforcement capabilities on cloud-based assets. Additionally, extended application support (Slack and Secure Data Space), language support (German and Japanese) for DLP and machine learning, as well as new data centers in Europe (Germany) and Asia (Singapore), expand global usage and protection options and address regional data privacy needs.
  • Increased performance and three new VM-Series virtual firewall models that have been added to the existing virtual firewall family. The VM-Series, which now includes the new VM-50, VM-500 and VM-700, delivers industry-leading performance options ranging from 200 Mbps up to an industry-leading 16 Gbps of firewall throughput with App-ID enabled to deliver predictable performance in cloud deployments and address a variety of use cases from virtualized branch office to data center and service provider deployments.
  • Additional threat prevention, management and hardware highlights are also available with the introduction of PAN-OS 8.0.

According to the 2016 Cloud Readiness Index published by the Asia Cloud Computing Association, the Philippines ranked #9 but scored only 3.5 in cybersecurity posture to effectively combat cyberattacks. A robust cloud computing outlook for the Philippines got an even bigger push when the recently-established Department of Information and Communications Technology (DICT) adopted a cloud-first policy, making the Philippines one of the first countries in the world to do so.

PAN-OS 8.0 is now available globally to customers of Palo Alto Networks with a current support contract.

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