'

Cisco looks to turn the network into a security sensor

Cisco has announced Security Everywhere, offering security in every aspect of its network portfolio.

Cisco will seek to have security at every point of contact on its network as part of a new Security Everywhere offering.

The aim will be to have security throughout Cisco's network offering in the datacentre right up to the end user, and all connected devices.

End points will be covered using Cisco AnyConnect 4.1 VPN services using advanced malware protection. Branch offices will have FirePOWER services on the Cisco Integrated Services Routers, managing the intrusion prevention system.

Cisco is also seeking to turn the entire network into sensors and security enforcers to identify threats to the network.

"The beauty of it is we have embedded security into our customers' infrastructure. We're saying attacks can come from everywhere, so security needs to be everywhere," Cisco's VP of enterprise products Inbar Lasser-Raab told Cisco Live on Monday.

"Network as a sensor and an enforcer doesn't come to replace the traditional security. It actually adds another layer and provides additional visibility."

Through using the identity services engine and NetFlow, customers would be able to monitor network traffic down to the device level to know when and where unusual behaviour is originating from on the network, and what the target is, Lasser-Raab said.

"You can look at that as a caller ID. From which user, from which device trying to access what," she said.

StealthWatch will also block suspicious network devices.

The company is expanding its service provider security offerings, with the rollout of the Firepower 9300 integrated security platform to all scale of security as data-flow demands grow.

Cisco customer, law firm K&L Gates LLP, has used the new Firepower platform to mitigate distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) attacks. The company has 4,000 staff members across 15 countries, and the firm's IT operations director Kevin Phillips told Cisco Live on Monday that having a consistent security product across the board is vital.

"Our security strategy is really as much concern about our clients as it is our firm. We interact and retain a considerable amount of data ... so we have to look at and adhere to the same regulations [all over the world] and make sure our controls meet the expectations of our end users," he said.

"Everyone is absolutely verifying and making sure these things are in place."

Disclosure: Josh Taylor attended Cisco Live as a guest of Cisco.