Let us be honest, just like our homes, our networks need effective Firewall Management. A firewall is the only line of defence your device/computer has for the world of internet vulnerabilities now in 2019.
But, Firewall management by now means is easy. In fact, it is one of the most time-consuming activities on your network security system. Your IT administrators would be spending a lot of unwanted time if the Firewall management route is incorrect.
Such a complex activity also accounts for a lot of error son your network system.
So, if you are an IT manager then the below are the top 4 focus areas in your Firewall Management.
Your Change Management Plan Must be Clear
Simply, your Firewall management plan is going to change time to time as your requirements from your network evolves.
Similarly, when you are in the process of this change management your firewall management change plan should include the four following factors;
- Have a strict approach to policy changes and permissions
- Properly authorized controls to ensure who can and not implement a change
- Centralize your firewall management to implement policy changes
- Have an audit trail to trach the changes and permission
Test Your Firewall Changes
This is a no brainer, but it is one of the easily forgotten steps for a stressed IT manager. You always want to test trial your major changes in your firewall policy before you go live. This testing will also avoid major disruptions if any. Here are the four things your firewall policy change plan should do;
- Review security policies in your network for consistency
- The firewall should have adequate access to security changes
- Confirm the firewall is blocking the implemented changes in data
- Check the compatibility of the firewall with all network applications
Schedule Your Policy Audits
More than often you will see that once we set the firewall, we absolutely forget about it. But, this where your regular policy and security check of your firewall will ensure a far better performance. Here is when you should be reviewing your firewall policy;
- When a new firewall is introduced
- Added new IP network application
- Change of ISP
- Significant operation change
Take the Configuration Snapshots
The worst problems usually arise in the middle of your firewall policy change and without your configuration snapshots you would be losing out on most of your previous data and steps.
And, if the policy doesn’t work out you would still need a firewall policy train back and reversion. Having the firewall software and applications software to take the configuration snapshots mean you would be on point on where to start over again and how.
Tips for Configuration Management
When you are making a change in your firewall policy here are the 3 things you should always do!
Harden your existing firewall system while migration to the new one. Using the migration your network is more vulnerable and exposed.
Synchronize all internal firewall clocks so it automatically interacts with all other applications.
Never keep your backup firewall configuration on your network system. If anything goes wrong, you will not have access to them.
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