Taiwan-based network equipment vendor Zyxel Communications embedded Enea’s Qosmos ixEngine, a deep packet inspection engine, into its unified threat management (UTM) products to enhance visibility into its devices and traffic flows.
Zyxel’s UTM is a network security device with content filtering, anti-virus, and intrusion detection capabilities. By embedding Enea’s deep packet inspection engine, it is able to leverage the engine’s ability to extract application metadata, identify network and application protocols, and analyze and decode traffic in real-time.
The combined capabilities increase visibility into the application layer — as Enea’s engine provides layer 7 classification and traffic metadata attributes of an application. As a result, Zyxel said its customers will benefit from a more effective security policy management.
The Qosmos engine identifies and extracts information in the form of metadata as it travels through the network layers. This metadata can come in the form of message senders and receivers, shared file names, or attachments in the application. Enea’s Qosmos can also identify actions in the application, such as login, browse data, chat, and file transfer.
Enea better defines network traffic by identifying certain protocols and types of applications, which will strengthen the security capabilities of Zyxel.
Due to the increasing complexity of networks, protocols and applications are evolving quickly. According to Erik Larsson, VP of marketing at Enea, Qosmos engineers are able to keep up by continuously monitoring protocol changes, in turn making updates to signatures. Their focus here is on bandwidth-intensive protocols and the top 100 applications, by region.
Larsson noted that in its signature library, which hosts its categories of protocols and applications on IP networks and systems, there are over 3,000 signatures for classification of application and protocol ID’s, and around 5,000 types of metadata available to extract from networks and applications.
This partnership is not unique for Enea, in fact Larsson said around half of its customers are in the security business. Cloud security company Secucloud integrated the Qosmos engine into its cloud security system, and mobile and network security provider Clavister uses Qosmos’ application control and visibility capabilities in its security gateway products.