Best Network Security Software in 2021

By Aileen Padua - Published on March 22, 2021
A brief explanation about best nework security software

What is Network Security?

Network security is a solid and essential tool that every system needs in order to be properly protected from exploitation, data loss, and theft. According to Cisco(1), Having an effective network security system can target a variety of threats as well as have full access to your network while protecting its integrity and functionality altogether.

Because of network security, households and businesses can properly be protected from data breaches and other threats that can cause detrimental harm to any type of network.

Popular Network Security Software

There are different types of security software for various types of networks. Here is a list of networks to name a few.

  • DNA Security Software
  • Firewall Software
  • Intrusion Detection and Prevention Systems (IDPs)
  • Network Access Control Software (NAC)

Before diving into the different types of networks that require network security software, let’s take a look at the popular list of security software preferred by Network Security professionals 

DNS Security Software

DNS or Domain Network Systems help match up names to numbers pertaining to a website. Basically, they function as IP addresses for internet users and mainly need security protection.

Cisco Umbrella

Features
  • Guest Wi-Fi
  • Insights
  • Professional and platform services
  • Comprehensive reports
  • Real-time visibility
  • Threat protection
  • URL/domain level filtering
Pros Cons
Easy installment Implementation documentation can be confusing
Modern user interface Minor technology glitches
Provides advanced protection from online threats
24/7 access to support via phone and email
$38.00/user

Web Titan Web Filter

Features

  • Malware blocking
  • Fast and scalable interface
  • Reporting
  • Phishing prevention
  • Real-time updates
  • Secure BYOD
  • API remote management and monitoring
Pros Cons
Excellent support and filtering Only allows single login for cloud portal
Great ease of use Difficult customer support
Easy installment Pricing
Great web access tool for businesses of any size

Electric

Features

  • Quick real-time support
  • Network & server management
  • Cloud management
  • Security
  • Strategic Project Management
  • Procurement & Provisioning
  • Employee offboarding & onboarding
Pros Cons
Great use without an internal IT department Slight learning curve with software when training employees
Great for remote working environments Repeated administrative mistakes
Excellent IT support Miscommunications with support and a lack of attention to detail
Provides timely responses to inquiries

Open DNS Personal Internet Security

Features

  • Free service that offers basic protection with customizable content filtering
  • Four different plans from Open DNS: Family Shield, Home, VIP Home, Prosumer
  • Free email support
  • Parental controls
  • Restricted internet access to specific allow-listed domains
Pros Cons
Great tool for controlling home networks Each plan comes with certain features; not all have the same features as others
Easy setup/installation Not good for a corporate environment
Excellent at blocking harmful websites Not user friendly for people who are not tech-savvy
Ease navigation of the interface

Firewall Software

Firewalls were simply designed to filter out what comes in and out of internet traffic. It creates a barrier between an established and unestablished network.

Check Point Next-Generation Firewalls (NGFWs)

Features

  • Hyperscale security
  • Uncompromised security
  • Unified security systems
Pros Cons
Strong ease of use Lack of CLI references
Good IPS/IDS blading and application control WAF unavailable
Excellent URL filtering Not good with layer 4 filtering
Scalable platforms Lack of SD-WAN solutions

SonicWall

Features

  • Next-generation firewall catered to SMBs, Enterprise, and Government
  • Comprehensive security services
  • Advanced Threat protection
  • Modern Security Management
Pros Cons
Great for educational environments and small businesses Pricey security licensing
Easy to use administration interface Not UI friendly, Slow processing

Cisco Next-Generation Firewall Virtual (NGFWv)

Features

  • World-class security controls
  • Consistent policy and visibility
  • Integrate network and security
Pros Cons
Easy to manage Pricey licensing

Avast Endpoint Protection

Features

  • 3 different security suites: Basic, Advanced, and Premium
  • Business Hub
  • Malware Protection
  • Patch Management
  • Basic Remote Control
  • Server Protection
  • Privacy & Identity Protection
  • Business-grade support
Pros Cons
Free 30-day trial Different suites have different features
Reliable business protection Slow customer service (24/5 service)
Deletion of junk information Pricey to pay for each software
Offers document protection

FortiGate NGFW

Features

  • Full visibility
  • Threat protection
  • Fabric management center
  • Security Fabric Integration
  • Validated Security Effectiveness
Pros Cons
Efficient to use and contains series of corrective agents New versions may encounter bugs
Affordable firewall software
Easy deployment and management
Ideal for small businesses

AVG Antivirus Business Edition

Features

  • Ransomware Protection
  • Remote Access
  • Smart Scanner
  • Identity Protection
  • File Shredder
  • File Server Security
  • Firewall
  • CyberCapture
  • Network Antivirus
  • LinkScanner Surf-Shield
Pros Cons
Quick installation Hard to use
24/7 protection Difficult navigation
Free email and online support Lacks indication for compromised systems
Automatic updates
Data and privacy protection
Compatible with Windows 10

Intrusion Detection and Prevention Systems (IDPs)

IDPs help inform IT, executives and staff, about any breaches that may occur within a system. With assistance, network security software for IDPS can easier tasks to carry out IT specialists getting to the bottom of a situation. 

AlienVault USM (from AT&T Cybersecurity)

Features

  • Detects threats anywhere
  • Automated data collection and analysis
  • Automated threat detection powered by AT&T Alien Labs
  • Incident response orchestration with AlienApps
  • Multiple security capabilities on one platform
Pros Cons
Ease of use and customization Lack of pre-deployment option
Excellent interface Cumbersome management and maintenance
Great monitoring and effective feedback Overly complicated DDoS

Snort

Features

  • Offers different subscriptions to personal, business, and integrator use
  • Certifications
  • Open source network intrusion system
Pros Cons
Outstanding community support Requires lots of domain knowledge to navigate
Great at searching/identifying malicious content Lots of configuration required before using
Compatible with other software
Free and download to use

Palo Alto Networks Next-Generation Firewall

Features

  • Virtual/ physical/ container firewalls
  • Network Security Management
  • Cloud-delivered security services
  • PAN-OS
Pros Cons
Helps with the organization and secures most networks Pricey cost of appliance and support
Complete and comprehensive solutions to secure networks Powerful UI
Versatile security software Slow customer support

Blumira Automated Detection & Response

Features

  • Unlimited third-party integrations
  • Cloud sensor modules
  • Yearlong retention
  • Automated threat detection
  • Viral honeypot sensors
  • Correlated threat intelligence
  • Threat hunting
Pros Cons
Easy set up/installation Learning curve with a few workflows
Excellent reporting/filtering Lack of robust visualization
Responsive to any requests Lack of flexible reporting
Bills annually $100/user minimum
Volume3 discounts are available for 250+ users

McAfee Network Security Platform

Features

  • Network Traffic Inspection
  • AWS and Azure protection
  • Extend Botnet Intrusion Detection and Network Analysis
Pros Cons
Stable during large traffic volumes Tuning can be challenging
Quick search to threats and will block access to “suspicious” sites Too many threat detections that may not be threats
Excellent reporting Pop-ups

ExtraHop

Features

  • Threat Detection/Hunting
  • Security hygiene
  • Dependency mapping
  • Incident response
  • Forensic investigation
  • Compliance & auditing
  • Inventory & configuration
  • Vulnerability assessment
Pros Cons
Great network insight and intelligence analysis Lag with application runs
Fairly intuitive interface and GUI Slow tuning and noise filtering
Easy real-time analysis Learning curve when attempting at more complex filtering
Visibility to network traffic

Network Access Control Software

NAC software is used to set protocols and policies on how to secure access to a network when being opened up by users from different devices. Installing security software provides more advantages in protecting a network from unauthorized access.

Citrix Gateway

Features

  • CSS Select program
  • Digital/Citrix workspaces
  • Analytics
  • Content Collaboration
  • Unified Endpoint Management
  • Secure Access
  • App Delivery and Security
Pros Cons
Empowers remote employees Slow with other applications open
Available for web, enterprise, Citrix, cloud, and mobile apps Difficult initial installation process
Great for Financial Services, Government, Healthcare. Hard to navigate
Manufacturing and Retail

Coveo

Features

  • Intelligent search
  • Content personalization
  • Applied AI
  • Pre-built integrations
  • Developer toolkit
Pros Cons
Scalable, constant optimization, reliable and trustworthy Results shown are not always relevant to the issue
Smarter business searches
Turns negotiations into personal methods
Extensive business search technology

Cisco ISE

Features

  • Centralized management
  • Rich contextual identity and business policy
  • Access control
  • Secure supplicant-less network access with Easy Connect
  • Guest lifecycle management
  • Streamlined device onboarding
  • Cisco TrustSec/ Group Based Policy
Pros Cons
Easy management Complex ease of use
The robust security policy server Difficult ease of setup
Great for Cisco users The cost of integration into a network can be pricey
Excellent quality of support Bulky with its features/product and Works mainly well for familiar Cisco users and a Cisco environment

Pulse Policy Secure

Features

  • Secure remote access
  • Security posture check
  • Guest management
  • End-to-end visibility and profiling
  • Access control
  • Bidirectional integration
Pros Cons
Simple and secure ease of use Occasional closed connections
Easy to install UI issues take time to resolve
Complete visibility for organizations with PPS Slows other applications down
Improves compliance and risk management

DCImanager

Features

  • IT Consulting
  • Flexible API system
  • Network Management
  • IT reduction costs
  • Remote Service Access
Pros Cons
Flexible control over business Minor glitches that need to update often
Automation of internal business processes Billing platform can be questionable
Simple management and reliability Lacks certain features for specific industries

Reblaze

Features

  • Automated reporting
  • 24/7 incident support
  • Full CDN integration
  • DoS/DDoS protection
  • Web Application Firewall
  • Advanced bot management
Pros Cons
Free trial offered Difficult navigation/ease of use
Quick response time Complex interface
Great customization and functionality for applications

Choosing the Best Network Security Software

  1. Determine what’s in your corporate budget.

    Before deciding on the best network security software for you, the budget must play a major role. Budget falls as a key factor because in case of a data breach, looking at how much can potentially be lost in damages as well as how much is left over can allow you to start over again.

    It’s been reported by Bromium that the average large-scale corporation spends around $345,700 annually(2) on protecting data systems and networks. Though it can be costly for some companies, having the appropriate budget to spend on certain security systems can benefit your company in many ways.

  2. Research the different types of network security software.

    As mentioned previously, there are different types of network security software catered to different types of networks. Because Network Security professionals prefer the top security software mentioned above, there’s the main reason for that.

    Not only do various network security software feature multiple functions but using the right software for your network allows easier executions in protection.

  3. Think about common concerns about securing your business network.

    Along with budget and the types of networks you’re working with, having a list of great concerns also comes with choosing the best type of network security software for your company. Say your last network security software failed to carry out certain tasks in protecting your data system.

    Because of these said concerns, your company should take the time to consider what parts of your system you would like to protect and other policies that can lead to effective network security. Think about the next steps and precautions to take as well as what to avoid.

Final Thoughts

In the end, having a network security system for your business is an effective way to protect all your digital assets. It allows companies to work and succeed without having too much of a concern with what can potentially happen.

Finding the right network security system also goes back to knowing the different types of networks that are out there such as DNS, Firewalls, IDPS, and Network Access Controls.

Figuring out your corporate budget is another large risk to take when it comes to spending on network security systems. One thing to remember, however, is balancing the price you pay with its costs.

Aileen Padua

Aileen Padua | Aileen Padua is an aspiring social media coordinator. She is currently majoring in Advertising at Fresno State University. With her understanding about the power of social media, Aileen is passionate about preserving and enhancing the image of one’s reputation in the public eye.

Aileen Padua

Aileen Padua | Aileen Padua is an aspiring social media coordinator. She is currently majoring in Advertising at Fresno State University. With her understanding a...

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