Earlier this year, we saw alleged surveillance balloons over USA and a decision to shoot them using a billion-dollar F35 fighter plane. What is remarkable about that story is the global media focus on the effort to stop one or two balloons compared to the quiet efficiency, every second of every day, in cybersecurity to block what we could equate to ‘electronic cyber-balloons’ aimed at surveillance on people, devices, and data.
Every organisation in Northern Ireland has a range of challenges, but one that is constant and rising is cybersecurity. Like everywhere in the UK, and indeed the world, a skills shortage exacerbates the risk, often on a legacy estate of multiple technology types. Is there hope for modern executives and IT leaders in this rising challenge?
The good news is yes. Next-generation technology (as with many aspects of modern life) is making efficient solutions that keep ahead of the emerging cybersecurity threat. The best practice seen in many large and small organisations, uses two words that assist any strategic action plan to resolve the challenges outlined above: Convergence and consolidation.
Gartner has embraced such consolidation in its Top Strategic Technology Trends for 20221 report, recommending something called a cybersecurity mesh architecture (CSMA). Fortinet has been driving this solution set by the market-leading Fortinet Security Fabric2 for a decade. This type of integrated and automated security is seen by many as the optimal ‘convergence’ that can defeat an increasingly automated threat.
How serious is that new threat automation risk today? Before the well-known ‘Log4J’ attack that hit global networks in late 2021, news of such a major vulnerability breaking typically saw a few days before a sharp rise in global attack levels. Hence, we do need to automate to keep ahead and drive ‘convergence’ into an integrated cybersecurity estate (like the CSMA concept).
Consolidation is the long-term advantage of a sole vendor partnership, with one that allows full integration and the consequent automated cybersecurity. For organisations that need several years to phase out legacy purchases then choosing a vendor with an open-ecosystem is essential to allow adequate connectivity to prop up integration in a complex estate.
Northern Ireland IT solutions can thus benefit directly from shared global excellence in cybersecurity. From governments to universities and from banks to small businesses, Fortinet uses the same best-in-class technology suite. Many people ask how Fortinet’s value remains so competitive and the answer is the Fortinet policy of making its own processors and solutions ‘in-house’. Along with less supply chain risk or delays, this allows Fortinet to offer the best value, on time and often with more security for the same budget.
Being trusted is an important part of the Fortinet ethos seeking a long-term partnership that is mutually beneficial. At Fortinet we offer you our customers a path to transformation via consolidation, allowing the technology you have invested in to automatically defend against the equally-automated approach from the bad guys and thus provide you with the most integrated and the most competitive value offering in the market.
At Fortinet we believe in providing our customers with Cybersecurity, everywhere you need it.
Lean IT teams can quickly deploy solutions to specifically suit them, on-premises or in the cloud. Consistent security is maintained regardless of where data resides, how users connect, or how the business shifts across network, endpoint, and cloud security:
• unified networking and security to simply deployment and support;
• integrated endpoint security to support hybrid workforces; and
• centralised management and broad reporting and analytics.
We offer quick and easy guides3 to how you can start to secure your organisation today for a safer tomorrow.
Chris Parker is attending CyberUK 2023 in Belfast ICC on 19-20 April where Fortinet are sponsors. Fortinet lead for the Team based in Northern Ireland is Graham King; to visit us at CyberUK or for questions on how to gain world class cybersecurity you can contact Graham at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Profile: Chris Parker
Chris Parker MBE joined Fortinet UK in 2020. He is a strategic leader who has designed and led international operations at national and multi-national level. Senior Corporate roles include: $1B Infrastructure project director, COO global oil exploration corporation and founder of three consultancy companies. Chris is a Fellow of the Tällberg Foundation, holds a Masters’ Degree in Technology and two post-graduate diplomas in strategic management.