Niagara Networks Open Visibility Platform: Creating an Agile Deployment Hub for Network Security

Yoram Ehrlich By: Yoram Ehrlich December 23, 2019

One of the greatest impediments that security teams face in dealing with escalating threats and increasing data breaches is the lack of agility. While new security technologies and solutions come on the market quickly, security teams have been slow to adopt them.

It is difficult and time consuming to add a new security solution to the network or make changes or upgrades to existing ones. Limited ports and rack space, along with the complex or convoluted task of getting a change or addition approved for network deployment, make security slow to adopt and keep pace with attack techniques.

The Open Visibility Platform (OVP) from Niagara Networks changes all of that. With it, organisations can have a deployment point in the network that can accommodate a nearly unlimited number of solutions while vouching for their operation to ensure that network performance, availability and resilience are not adversely affected. In addition, logical sequencing of processing or traffic flow as well as rules and policies can be established to manage a variety of solutions.

The OVP can host virtualised in-line or out-of-band applications or solutions and supply them with the exact network traffic they need. It can also supply standalone solutions with exactly the right kind of traffic. Any and all applications can be hosted, including those from third parties or even proprietary ones created in-house. Applications don’t have to limited to ones approved or certified by Niagara. Even temporary or ad hoc solutions for testing or audits can be hosted or supplied with traffic.

To offload the performance drag on individual solutions, the OVP can perform traffic processing utilities, such as decryption, de-dupe, masking or extraction. These utility services can be done once on the OVP and then made available to multiple solutions. In addition, individual solutions no longer have to be concerned with traffic processing and instead can stick to core expertise of a particular security solution. 

The OVP is a combination of a Niagara Networks N2 Series appliance plus the Niagara Networks Packetron module(s). The N2 Series is a NPB or TAP or Bypass Switch. It sits directly on the network switching fabric and is designed for very high performance and reliability. It is the thing that delivers the network traffic to in-line or out-of-band solutions. Many of the top service providers already rely on N2 Series in their core networks. Packetron is an add-in module that enables the solution hosting and performs the traffic processing utilities. Additional Packetron modules can be added in to scale for more solutions, traffic processing and load.

Packetron v1

With rapid changes to both solutions and security challenges and requirements, organizations need agility. The Open Visibility Platform brings that as an open, flexible and powerful deployment hub.

To learn more, read the OVP press release, visit the OVP information page, or contact one of Niagara's network visibility specialist. 

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