Load Balancing and NetSecOps - What’s the Deal?

Kemp, known for its well-tuned and easy-to-use load balancer LoadMaster, has acquired Flowmon, extending its product portfolio and growing through acquisition. So you may ask, how does the technology fit?

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User experience matters above all else

A load balancer plays a critical role in the application delivery chain - it knows everything about the application itself.

Meanwhile, NPMD technology ensures the applications are delivered through a well-functioning network by providing:

  • understanding of network traffic,
  • insight into bandwidth utilization,
  • key network performance metrics,
  • complex troubleshooting that goes beyond the visibility provided by the application delivery alone.

In addition, NDR technology contributes by leveraging the same network telemetry to detect threats, indicators of compromise, and adversary activities in the company digital environment.

A joint NetOps, SecOps and AppOps effort

This is not an attempt to coin a new buzzword, but I envision this unified technology as NetSecAppOps that ensures network performance and health, lending transparency to the digital environment and making it a true enabler of business goals.

LoadMaster is, in fact, much more than just another load balancer (or application delivery controller).

Defined in software, delivered in the kernel, and based on proven lmOS with over 20 years of Linux kernel optimization and integration, it ensures the best performance for applications regardless of whether they're delivered using containers, virtual machines, cloud, or bare metal. Kemps’s 360 Central and 360 Vision simplify application delivery through:

  • central management of applications,
  • SSL certificates,
  • security profiles (WAF). 

On top of that, it provides insight into application health going from availability of application servers through their load and up to the application response time and prediction of issues in application delivery.

Combined with Flowmon, we’re talking about true end-to-end visibility, monitoring, and root cause analysis.

When users have trouble reaching applications properly,  network visibility is essential to analyzing the root cause of the issue, which can vary from network or firewall configuration, bandwidth utilization, poor network performance, or the effect of middleboxes on the network traffic.

Flowmon’s network-layer root-cause analysis complements LoadMaster’s ability to fully understand the application itself, reports on user experience and performance degradation with root cause analysis in real time. Also, not all the applications are delivered through a load balancer and in such cases, Flowmon is the only source of truth when it comes to application performance or troubleshooting of application-related issues.

And don’t forget about security.

While LoadMaster is able to protect the application from threat actors with a built-in web application firewall, Flowmon extends this protection to the whole digital environment (even if composed of multiple hybrid environments) covering not only the application delivery chain but also both north-south and east-west traffic. Therefore, it can detect adversary techniques such as discovery, lateral movement, data collection, command & control, or exfiltration, effectively turning the network into another layer of protection against cyber threats and ensuring applications are delivered in a secure environment.

What about the future?

We stand at the birth of a new approach to business enablement via technology. The challenge now is to bring all the information under one user interface where the application delivery workflow is seamlessly fused with out-of-the-box detection and prediction of performance and security incidents, built-in root cause analysis, and response automation.

We are witnessing something unique, and I can only hope you share our excitement about what’s coming.

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