How Does a Secure Web Gateway Function?

A secure web gateway serves as a content moderator, guiding the content of a group of users to a controlled environment. The balance between access and security is difficult for corporations, as corporate assets must be accessible to both authorized and internal stakeholders. It intercepts threats and checks them before allowing them access to protected assets. It also prevents malicious actors from gaining access to sensitive information or data. Ensuring that corporate assets are protected is an effective, secure web gateway.

Security policies that guide the operation

The use of secure web gateway prevents network intrusion and data leakage from malicious websites. These gateways protect users on the web and email by controlling access to sensitive information, whether at home or work. Furthermore, they allow you to manage all security policies from a single console. A secure web gateway makes administration easier by applying policy configurations automatically, such as user accounts, roles, branding, and directory synchronization.

The security policies that guide the operation of a secure website gateway are different from those for firewalls. They are dedicated appliances, cloud services, or proxies that terminate and emulate network traffic. However, despite their differences, they are generally effective in blocking or preventing sophisticated web attacks. While firewalls focus on the overall network traffic, secure web gateways specialize in analyzing individual requests and traffic.

URL filtering

URL filtering is a technique that allows administrators to restrict access to certain websites based on their URL. For example, these filters can prevent employees from visiting sites that contain malware and other potentially harmful content, or they can enforce bandwidth limits on streaming services. URL filtering is useful for businesses and organizations because it enables administrators to set granular web security policies based on user groups, web categories, and web applications. URL filters can also help protect organizations from security breaches because they enable administrators to restrict access to specific websites.

With URL filtering, organizations can restrict access to websites containing malware or used in phishing attacks. The solution also eliminates the need for IT administrators to trust employees not to visit blacklisted sites. URL filtering on a secure web gateway also allows organizations to set policies that prevent access to social networking sites or other potentially harmful websites. It is also possible to customize URL filtering policies based on time of day, location, and user privileges.

SSL inspection

One of the biggest concerns for enterprise and educational organizations is the vulnerability of SSL encryption. Although secure web gateways generally do not see SSL traffic, it can still allow malware to spread, breach corporate Internet usage policies, or expose kids to inappropriate content. It’s essential to use a web gateway capable of scanning SSL traffic as a web proxy to protect these assets. Most traditional firewalls, ‘pass-by’ web security gateways and Unified Threat Management (UTM) devices are not capable of doing this.

The use of SSL validity indicators is inconsistent in some cases. For example, some software selectively validates upstream certificates based on the User-Agent HTTP header, which conveys certificate validity in the application layer. As a result, it leads to inconsistency in the use of SSL validity indicators. In addition, SSL inspectors can fail to detect a variety of vulnerabilities. For example, some applications send a client request to the server when they detect an invalid certificate. It enables an attacker to access and alter sensitive data on the server without the user’s knowledge.

Advanced threat defense

A secure web gateway offers several advantages over a firewall. It can identify malicious and friendly traffic, protect network assets, and prevent advanced Internet-based attacks. These devices use Next-Generation Firewalls to monitor internet traffic and block malicious applications. As network threats become more sophisticated, Next-Generation Firewalls are expected to provide even more protection against Internet attacks. This technology protects your network by filtering traffic on a deep packet level and using rules to detect dangerous content.

An advanced threat defense on a secure web gateway uses URL filtering and SSL inspection to monitor website traffic and enforce company policies. These solutions also scan data for sensitive data and block unauthorized data exfiltration. They compare all traffic to global and local threat lists, including encrypted traffic. The cloud-based secure web gateway analyzes the content and code to identify if it poses a security threat. The security solution works with HTTP, HTTPS, and FTP protocols.

Legacy malware protection

Secure web gateways are tools that help organizations enforce internet policy compliance through URL filtering, advanced threat defense, and legacy malware protection. These products can be implemented on-premises using appliances or through cloud-based services. Vendors continue to differ in their hardware and cloud-based offerings and their capabilities to protect enterprises. Handling significant traffic loads is an essential feature of a secure web gateway. The Trustwave Secure Web Gateway can bridge this gap with a patented malware-detection solution that analyzes a web page’s intent and removes malicious code. The security solution also performs other tasks in a secure environment that does not negatively impact the user experience.

Monitoring incoming and outgoing Internet traffic

Monitoring incoming and outgoing Internet traffic by securing a web gateway is to safeguard your digital assets, data, systems, and network from threats. It acts as a virtual gate between your network and the Internet, filtering incoming traffic and blocking outgoing traffic from malicious websites. Secure web gateways are available in software form or the cloud. They act as a proxy between internal users and the Internet, ensuring that only legitimate traffic passes through the gateway.

The deployment of secure web gateways should be integrated with existing security tools to prevent malware infections. The gateway should incorporate the existing monitoring system and alert IT, staff, to any problems or security threats. For further security, it should be used in conjunction with zero-day anti-malware solutions. Every protocol must be made available. Once installed, the gateway should be easy to use. In a security breach, a secure web gateway is an essential security measure for any organization.