Blending SIEM and SD-WAN for Increased Security at the Edge

By | Managed Services News

Mar 13

A combination of SD-WAN and SIEM power secure and agile networks that are fit to handle today’s digital transformations.

Highly distributed enterprises with many branch locations are rethinking their approach to network management and security. Software-defined wide area networking (SD-WAN) is a crucial technology that offers an affordable network infrastructure with greater network connectivity options combined with capabilities to protect branch devices and data. SD-WAN has been further extended to the concept of SD-Branch consisting of an SD-WAN architecture with a single multi-function edge device that replaces the need for separate routers, firewalls, cellular modems and access points. When fully rounded out with multi-layer security controls, cellular data and a cloud orchestrator, these enterprises are able to quickly deploy, secure and manage their networks with unprecedented visibility.

However, until recently, these SD-Branch solutions still lacked the ability to deliver the more immediate threat detection and effective response capabilities of cybersecurity’s proven workhorse: security information and event management (SIEM). Today’s cyber criminals seek to exploit any weakness in people, processes and technology, making advanced threat protection even more vital. Long found in the IT arsenal of larger enterprises, SIEM capabilities are rapidly being adopted within the SD-WAN edge to enhance visibility and to layer on additional cybersecurity protection. The need for SIEM capabilities at the branch level has increased greatly as more and more network traffic goes through the internet instead of being tunneled back to a corporate data center. As a result, the branch network is more likely to be vulnerable to cyber attacks.

Assessing the security posture of an organization is a key component of a SIEM solution. A SIEM system delivers comprehensive log analytics with audit-ready compliance capabilities. It identifies security threats, malware, unusual behavior and suspicious network traffic, and alerts you when you’re under attack. When coupled with a 24/7 security operations center (SOC), a SIEM system reduces complexity by combining connectivity, threat detection and compliance management into a single suite of managed network services. The synthesis of edge networking with SIEM capabilities enables better and faster security decision making.

Highly distributed organizations are looking to enhance visibility and agility while streamlining security operations and optimizing resources. In particular, network service providers are driving the value of coupling SD-WAN and SIEM through the support of managed security service providers (MSSPs). Key capabilities cited as the result of this cybersecurity convergence are:

  • Improved branch network visibility: Visibility across the entire organization is a crucial requirement in today’s “always-on” organization. A loss of visibility can lead to inefficient manual workarounds, network performance issues or, worse yet, security gaps that go undetected. IT teams of all sizes need single-pane-of-glass visibility and management to defend against advanced threats. Comprehensive 24/7 coverage from network and security experts comes with the integration of a managed SD-WAN and a managed SIEM solution.
  • Practical security operations: Collecting, correlating, monitoring and alerting on edge devices requires time and expertise that are often in short supply within distributed businesses like quick-serve restaurants (QSRs). With no additional agents or consoles to manage, the addition of SIEM capabilities to SD-WAN edge solutions like Netsurion BranchSDO ensures that you receive only

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