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Firewall Security Guide

Firewall Security Audit

Firewall Security Audit and Assurance

Firewall assurance and audits help you find security loopholes in your network security and places where you need to change your security policies. By evaluating policy and security controls regularly, such a service improves your network security outlook. This puts you in the best position to deal with a breach or security issue. As networks grow and get more complex, people who work in network security have to manage more security devices from more vendors than ever before. 

What is a Firewall Audit and Assurance?

Firewall assurance and auditing is the process of conducting a comprehensive evaluation of the firewall configuration, either on-site or remotely, for certain practices, appropriate rule structure, and other factors. It is responsible for reviewing and correcting setups, streamlining the organization’s rule sets and related items, optimizing firewall performance, and configuring the correct operating system parameters. An enterprise’s firewall is optimized for security and performance after a firewall audit. It also provides a summary of the findings and improvement recommendations for security and management.

Importance of Firewall Audit and Assurance

Installing a firewall on your organization’s network is essential for blocking malicious traffic. Signature-pattern detection is used by firewalls to identify malicious payloads, whereas rule-pattern detection identifies unauthorized traffic. However, it is necessary to update signatures as malicious payloads become more sophisticated and evolve more rapidly. It is crucial to correctly administer and configure firewall rules. A single error in rule management could put the entire network at risk. Hackers and fraudsters are constantly searching for such vulnerabilities. Therefore, you must adopt a fundamental philosophy: security is a process, not a product. You must conduct a firewall audit because you must upgrade your systems, resolve issues, and inspect your security measures.

Firewalls are your first line of defense when it comes to securing your company’s network. A firewall audit ensures that policy or configuration flaws are identified before they could be exploited by attackers to gain network access. Firewall Audit and Assurance offer the following advantages:

  • Identify Policy Violations that can lead to Security Breaches
  • Comprehensive Information for all Non-compliance Configuration Objects
  • Identify Gaps in Compliance
  • Comprehensive Audit Report

How to Perform Firewall audit and assurance?

Follow the steps described below to perform assurance and audit:

Collect important data

You can’t conduct a good audit unless you thoroughly understand IT infrastructure, business needs, and regulatory requirements. Here’s what you’ll require:

  • Overview of all Internet service providers (ISPs) and virtual private networks (VPNs)
  • The documents and reports from previous audits include firewall objects, rules, and policy modifications
  • Copies of security policies are available.
  • Information on the firewall vendor is available, including the operating system version, default settings, and the most recent fixes

Once you’ve gathered this data, document, store, and aggregate it in a way that allows you to share it with the appropriate IT stakeholders. It will be simpler to examine procedures and rules and track their impact in this manner.

Change Management Process Must be Assessed

Executing and tracking firewall changes is possible using a reliable change management approach. Various problems arise due to inadequate change documentation and incorrect validation of how the changes affect the network and security posture. Examine the following processes for managing rule-based change management:

  • Is anyone putting the adjustments to the test?
  • How are the requested changes being approved?
  • Who is in charge of putting the changes in place?

You must ensure that a systematic process for firewall adjustments is in place so that they are sought, reviewed, authorized, and implemented correctly.

Conduct a risk assessment and address any issues that arise.

Risk assessments identify complex rules and ensure they comply with corporate policies, regulations, and standards.

Identify dangerous rules using industry standards and best practices, then prioritize them based on severity. It affects every organization in some way, depending on their network and risk tolerance criteria. Check the following:

  • Are there any policies that would enable hazardous services to pass over your DMZ and into your internal network?
  • Are there any rules that allow dangerous services to come in through the Internet?
  • Are there any controls that allow dangerous services to be sent outward to the Internet?
  • Is “ANY” in any user field in any firewall rule?
  • Do existing firewall rules have an impact on your company’s security policy?

Carry out Regular Audits

Once you’ve completed your first firewall audit, follow these guidelines to maintain compliance:

  • Establish a regular auditing procedure.
  • Replace error-prone manual operations with automated analysis and reporting.
  • Create an alerting system that alerts you of crucial activities and events, such as when the policy identifies a high-severity risk or when particular rules are changed.

Benefits Of Firewall Assurance And Audit Services

Configuring your firewalls for an external or regulatory audit is time-consuming and error-prone. Furthermore, while an audit is often a one-time event, most rules need you to be in continual compliance, which can be challenging to do given how frequently your rule bases change. It’s no surprise that manually preparing for an audit has become nearly complicated, with hundreds of regulations and Access control lists across many different security devices and countless modifications every week. Better compliance reporting, rule-based optimization, simpler policy management, and rule rectification are possible using a centralized firewall rule management solution. The benefits of firewall assurance and audit are as follows:

Simplify Firewall assurance and audit

Firewall assurance and audits automatically identify compliance gaps, allowing you to correct them and generate real-time compliance reports that you can deliver to your auditors. As well, before any firewall rule changes get deployed, compliance issues are proactively evaluated. Your organization can maintain continuous compliance by documenting the change control authorization automatically. 

Optimize through automation

Auditing, configuring, and change tracking is just a few cyber hygiene chores that can be automated and improved. Find and remove any firewall rules that are redundant, shadowed, or unduly permissive. Conduct rule usage analysis, optimize regulations, and complete ruleset audits in less time. Firewall reporting can be automated and customized.

Enhance security while lowering the chance of non-compliance.

Detect violations of access policies, rule conflicts, and configuration errors. Ensure that all configuration, regulations, and firewall access are compliant. Identify security flaws within the firewalls and take steps to prevent them from being exploited.

Firewall Audit Reporting

Audit documentation and extensive reporting based on the internal security policy to help you determine if your firewall is configured correctly, what problems were found, and how to resolve them.

Other Benefits

  • Increased Security and Workflow.
  • An increase in the performance and visibility of the enterprise’s network.
  • Improved IT Network Risk Profile.

What services does Sharkstrikes give in Firewall Audit and Assurance?

SharkStriker provides you with various firewall audits and assurance services that are listed below:

  • Complete Evaluation of Rules, Configuration, and Compliance Violations
  • Firewall Adhering to Vendor Best Practices
  • Audit Reporting
  • Risk Assessment and Vulnerability Remediation

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