SMOAD Networks

August 10, 2022

Is SD-WAN making standalone firewalls obsolete?

How reliable is this new entrant?

Digitalization has made security paramount. Integrated security has become part of our day-to-day life, whether home or vehicle security; the innate need for safety defines the buying decision. SD-WAN comes with a built-in firewall, but not all are designed similarly. While choosing SD-WAN solutions, pick integrated firewall solutions tested by reputed companies.

The sophisticated threats force organizations to review their security policy to plug vulnerabilities in branches and remote offices. The rise in internet traffic has led to the decline in MPLS WAN. With more and more data attacks reported, it is obvious to use advanced firewall solutions.

Understanding Firewall
As the name suggests, a Firewall is a barrier between the internal network and the outside world. Over the decades’ security threats have multiplied, and firewalls evolved to meet the challenges. So, what is the improvement? It is the Next Generation Firewalls (NGFW). It helps to detect malware and ransomware threats. Moreover, it alerts against Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attacks to adhere to strict compliance requirements.

Understanding SD-WAN
Meanwhile, SD-WAN is created to connect your business to the world of the Internet, Cloud, remote offices, and data centres. With applications moving to the Cloud, enterprises need uninterrupted internet access. SMOAD solutions provide multiple connectivity (Broadband+LTE) to ensure round-the-clock internet access.
SD-WAN features include:

  • Failover and failback
  • Load balancing
  • Performance Metrics
  • Alerts
  • Quality of Service (QoS)

SD-WAN and Next Generation Firewall (NGFW)
IT teams are in a dilemma when choosing between SD-WAN VPN with NGFW or a standalone Firewall, especially when implementing SASE Security solutions. Again, it all depends on the organization’s requirements. To begin with, your organization would have invested in a host of security products and services; do they need more?

IT teams are hesitant to select SD-WAN with built-in NGFW and find SD-WAN that could integrate with the existent NGFW solution the best alternative. This could help have control over security and WAN with the help of a single management interface. Selecting an SD-WAN vendor like SMOAD could help simpler networks. It is much easier to deploy, orchestrate and manage using a consolidated approach, making it an affordable proposition.

Which solution to choose for your business?
Your business needs the best performance and security; to accomplish this, you may need a Firewall and SD-WAN. It is available as a combo in one platform or as separate entities to meet your requirements.

1) SD-WAN plus NGFW may be ideal for Small and Medium businesses, mainly if they add spare communication links for load balancing, failover, and resilience. In-built NGFW in SD-WAN can prove beneficial and money-saving.

2) Another option would be to keep the existing firewall and add SD-WAN solutions. Do not disturb the existing firewall; add SD-WAN solutions to improve internet connectivity. All you need to do is to negotiate ISP contracts, eliminate outages and improve bandwidth. Integrate with the existing network without the need to modify network architecture.

3) This could be a viable option for those with multiple branch offices. If you are running a chain of branch offices, it could become burdening to invest in a firewall at the headquarters to overhaul traffic at branch offices. As the traffic grows, it leads to poor application performance and network congestion. Instead of spending big money on firewalls at each location and upgrading support agreements, an affordable solution would be to invest in advanced SD-WAN capabilities—for instance, load balancing, packet level control, encrypted tunnelling, and inbound and outbound failover. The ideal situation would be to use edge solutions to offload traffic at the edge and branch offices.

SMOAD SD-WAN with in-built firewall
SMOAD uses standard SD-WAN features like application prioritization and split tunnelling to route traffic via the best possible route; Broadband, WiFi, or LTE. Its features include an inbuilt firewall, Aggregation of 4G LTE + Home Broadband, Zero Trust Network Access, Auto-Failover, Application Prioritization, IDS/IPS, and content filtering on end-user devices. Companies can choose the level of security and features based on their current needs. It also includes a Multi-Network, High-Performance Plug n Play WiFi Router and a simple dashboard that gives the user centralized visibility and control.

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