Readers' Choice Awards '08: IT Security Products of the Year


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SMB and enterprise-level network firewall appliances and software


Juniper Networks SSG, ISG Appliances

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Juniper Networks

Juniper Networks' Secure Services Gateway (SSG) and Integrated Security Gateway (ISG) appliances won gold in the network firewall category on the strength of solid centralized management capabilities and ease of installation, configuration and administration.

The SSG appliances suit small and medium-sized companies to large enterprises with many branch offices. The GigaScreen3 ASIC module is the cornerstone of the ISG architecture and does packet parsing, classification and session-level processing for established sessions. Juniper says its ISG 1000 and 2000 are ideally suited for securing enterprise, carrier and data center environments where advanced applications such as VoIP and streaming media dictate consistent, scalable performance.

Readers say they got their money's worth from these products, starting with the ease of installation, configuration and administration. Readers also gave high marks to the technologies' centralized management capabilities, ability to block intrusions, attacks and unauthorized network traffic, vendor service and support, and compatibility with other network security tools.

NOTABLE Organizations using Juniper security technology include Bankdata, a leading financial services provider in Denmark.


Cisco PIX Appliances and Software
Cisco Systems

Cisco Systems' PIX firewall appliances and software finished a close second in this category, earning high marks from readers for their ability to block intrusions, attacks and unauthorized network traffic. Readers also ranked highly Cisco PIX support and service, as well as its application layer and protocol controls.

PIX appliances provide enterprises with user and application policy enforcement, attack protection and secure connectivity services. The purpose-built appliances provide such integrated security and networking services as advanced application-aware firewall services; VoIP and multimedia security; site-to-site and remote-access IPSec VPN connectivity; intelligent networking services; and flexible management components.

The PIX line ranges from compact desktop appliances for small offices to modular gigabit appliances for large enterprises and service providers.

NOTABLE On Jan. 28, Cisco announced the end-of-sale and end-of-life dates for Cisco PIX security appliances, software, accessories and licenses. The last day for purchasing Cisco PIX security appliance platforms/bundles will be July 28, and the last day to purchase accessories and licenses will be Jan. 27, 2009. Cisco will continue to support PIX customers through July 27, 2013.

This was first published in April 2008

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