It’s no secret that attackers and their methods have become more targeted, sophisticated, and automated. What followed is also an evolution in needs and demands of security teams to tackle new threats and risks. To address the ever-changing threat landscape and provide organizations with the best security capabilities possible, security vendors must continue to evolve as well.

Palo Alto Networks today is announcing PAN-OS 8.0, the largest product and feature release in the history of Palo Alto Networks.

The launch includes more than 70 new security features that enhance all aspects of Palo Alto Network’s Next-Generation Security Platform.  The company is building upon the existing capabilities of its natively engineered cybersecurity platform to provide organisations with the ability to safely enable applications, content and users regardless of location, prevent successful cyberattacks, simplify security operations, and safely embrace the cloud.

The new capabilities in PAN-OS 8.0 will help customers:

Enable Cloud Adoption – Enhancements support migration to diverse, multi-cloud environments, providing consistent, scalable, and advanced security, as well as industry-leading integration with key-providers such as AWS and Azure for operational agility and automated scale out. Greater visibility, policy enforcement and actionable dashboards improve security capabilities for SaaS applications, and an expanded line-up of VM-Series virtual firewalls meet a variety of performance needs and use cases.  New VM-50, VM-500 and VM-700 provide leading industry performance of up to 16 Gbps for small remote offices to data centres and service provider deployments.

Detect & Prevent Evasive Malware and Credential Theft – PAN-OS 8.0 includes several first-ever innovations focused on advanced threat prevention techniques and credential theft preventions. These include a newly 100% custom-built anti-evasion analysis environment for WildFire; a heuristic engine to dynamically steer highly evasive threats to a bare metal analysis environment for full hardware execution; a fully automated payload-based command-and-control signature generation and delivery mechanism; and the new MineMeld application for Autofocus for automated action driven by correlated threat intelligence.

Prevent the use of stolen credentials by providing a policy-based multi-factor authentication framework natively in the next-generation firewall. This new and unique capability makes it very easy to enforce multi-factor authentication from the firewall to stop cyber adversaries from moving laterally in a network and accessing sensitive resources with the help of stolen credentials or compromised endpoints. This is achieved by working at the network level in conjunction with authentication and identity management frameworks, such as Single Sign-On and Multi-Factor Authentication, and integrating with anumber of new-age identity access management vendors including Ping Identity, Duo Security, and Okta, in addition to tools such as RSA SecurID to enforce policies.

Scale with Predictable Performance Across a Variety of Use Cases – Designed to handle increasing throughput needs due to increased SSL encrypted traffic, data centre consolidation as well as increased traffic at the internet gateway, 6 new models of appliances, PA-5260, PA5250, PA-5220, PA-850, PA-820 and PA-220 enable advanced security protections for large data centres to smaller environments and branch offices.

Management features that provide administrators fast and accurate insight delivered by Panorama, and include ingestion of Traps (Advanced Endpoint Protection) logs as well as firewall logs to enrich correlation of indicators of compromise and automate actions to update the next-generation firewall with new automated actions to prevent adversary lateral movement and alert IT via third-party service ticketing systems such as ServiceNow, lowering operational burden for security teams.

Information Security Buzz