SonicWall Extends SMB Cybersecurity Ambitions

SonicWall continues to diversify its approach to cybersecurity by extending the reach and scope of its software-as-a-service (SaaS) offering for securing cloud applications and expanding the number of firewalls it provides that come with integrated software-defined wide area networking (SD-WAN) capabilities.

Dmitriy Ayrapetov, executive director for product management at SonicWall, said that as more of the company’s traditional base of small-to-medium businesses (SMBs) customers expand their reliance on cloud applications, it’s incumbent on SonicWall to help them secure those applications.

Version 2.0 of Cloud App Security from SonicWall address that requirement by adding support for machine learning algorithms that can detect phishing attacks being launched via email services such as Microsoft Office 365 and G Suite or through collaboration services such as Box and Dropbox. In addition, the latest version of Cloud App Security is now integrated with SonicWall’s Capture ATP sandbox service. That service makes it possible to apply SonicWall’s Real-Time Deep Memory Inspection (RTDMI) technology to identify breaches and usage of unsanctioned cloud applications using via an application programming interface (API) SonicWall exposes.

For small business that continue to deploy applications in on-premises environments, SonicWall also announced its SOHO 250 and TZ350 series firewalls with SD-WAN capabilities, which make it possible to eliminate reliance of MPLS connections.

Finally, SonicWall is also moving to make it easier to deploy and secure wireless networks. SonicWall WiFi Cloud Manager and SonicWiFi mobile app are integrated with the single sign-on (SSO) capabilities provided by the company’s Capture Security Center, a cloud-based management service.

Ayrapetov said the cloud is playing a bigger role in terms of not only hosting applications that need to be secured, but also providing a more effective means for managing and securing IT environments. Most SMBs can’t afford to build their own IT management platform in the cloud, so they expect vendors such as SonicWall to provide them with those capabilities.

To accelerate adoption of those services, SonicWall has also been making a case for bringing firewalls and SD-WANs under a common management plane. Rather than having to work with two separate vendors to deploy a SD-WAN in a remote office that then needs to be secured, SonicWall has committed to providing both capabilities. Of course, almost every major provider of SD-WANs is now expanding their portfolio to include firewall capabilities—most SMB organizations don’t have separate networking and security teams, so the more services that are unified by a single vendor, the more attractive that offering tends to be.

It may take a while longer for SonicWall to establish itself as being more than a provider of firewalls for SMB organizations. But as the security and networking challenges these organizations face become increasingly more complex, there’s a case to be made for unification. Once that goal is achieved, there may be no limit to the level of automation that can be applied across those unified services.

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Michael Vizard

Michael Vizard

Mike Vizard is a seasoned IT journalist with over 25 years of experience. He also contributed to IT Business Edge, Channel Insider, Baseline and a variety of other IT titles. Previously, Vizard was the editorial director for Ziff-Davis Enterprise as well as Editor-in-Chief for CRN and InfoWorld.

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