Barracuda announces major SASE, email and data protection solution enhancements at customer conference

Barracuda is also releasing a new survey at the event, showing how the danger level to customers from various threats, including ransomware, has increased significantly.

Today, at their Barracuda Secured.21 Customer Conference 2021, cybersecurity vendor Barracuda is making a series of product announcements. They are announcing the enhancement of their cloud-native SASE platform to now combine Secure SD-WAN, Firewall-as-a-Service, Zero Trust Network Access, and Secure Web Gateway technology in a converged SASE solution. Their email capabilities have been expanded by new automated workflows that expands customer ability to create custom workflow solutions. Barracuda Data Inspector, a new SaaS-based service, has been added to automatically scan OneDrive and SharePoint to identify sensitive information and malicious files. Finally, Barracuda also released a new commissioned report on the state of network security in 2021.

The report indicated that a high percentage of the 750 respondents acknowledged some sort of breach or compromise over the last year.

“Traditionally in these kinds of surveys, very few people admitted to being compromised,” said Tim Jefferson, SVP, Engineering for Data, Network, and Application Security at Barracuda. “Now 95% of customers admitted they had a network or application compromise in the last 12 months. They need to have better controls in place.” 74% of those surveyed said their organization has been the victim of at least one ransomware attack in the last year, while 81% of respondents said their organization has been the victim of a security breach once in the last year.

“The prevalence of these attacks was a surprise,” said Don MacLennan, SVP of Engineering and Product Management, Email Protection, at Barracuda. “We all thought we were out of the woods with ransomware once we moved from signature-based technology to machine learning, behavioral technology based at endpoints, with vendors like Crowdstrike and Cylance. Ransomware had started to die off, but now it’s back, following traditional attack patterns around Advanced Persistent Threats [APTs]. 95% of those cases were initiated with an email. It tells us the true extent to which customers have failed to accept defense in depth as the focus of security.”

The move to Work From Home has substantially increased risk. Companies with staff working predominantly from home had a significantly higher network security breach rate [85%], compared to companies with staff working predominantly in the office [65%]. 97% of respondents with company-issued devices also share their home internet connection with other members of their household, increasing risk.

The product announcements designed to respond to these threats begin with the enhancement of their cloud-native SASE platform that allows security inspection and policy enforcement in the cloud, at the branch, or on the device, combining Barracuda’s Secure SD-WAN, Firewall-as-a-Service, Zero Trust Network Access, and Secure Web Gateway technology.

“There are really two things new here,” Jefferson said. “The perimeter now moves to the cloud edge, which is what SASE is about. A lot of vendors don’t do this. They send traffic to a stack, which means extra hops, and often not being sent to endpoints closest to the user.”

Barracuda CloudGen Firewall’s next-gen capabilities have also been added to the hub.

“These were missing before because there were some constraints in the services that Microsoft supported,” Jefferson indicated. “Now customers can do full inspection at the edge, and can do VNet to VNet filtering – which was a huge ask from customers and partners – as well as branch-to-branch and branch-to-cloud filtering.

“What I think makes our solution unique in the market is it gives customers and partners options,” Jefferson added. “They can do inspections at the branch office so they are best served geographically, or at the cloud edge.”

Barracuda’s Barracuda Content Shield cloud secure web gateway product has been integrated into the Barracuda CloudGen Access ZTNA product.

“Adding Secure Web Gateway functionality to ZTNA responds to customers who asked for web gateway filtering to be at the edge as well,” Jefferson said. “We have seen tremendous adoption of the solution because of the growth of remote work, which increases the blast radius with insecure networks.”

The Barracuda Total Email Protection offering has been enhanced as well. New automated workflows make it easier for customers to create custom workflows to further automate their responses, which automatically execute based on defined triggers and conditions.  Expanded public-facing APIs now let Barracuda incident response data be leveraged by customers using their current SOAR, SIEM or XDR solution.

The increased automation is critical, MacLennan said.

“We watched people who administered mail environments having to root around and search for stuff inside mail infrastructure, especially if they think something got through,” he said. “The original version of the product was to help people who did this work by writing scripts. That first generation of the product had a powerful search and discovery capability and the ability to clean it up with the click of a button.

“With this generation, customers needed something more automated beyond a rule,” MacLennan continued. “They needed multiple criteria and the ability to do multiple things in response at the same time, such as delete AND send a notification. We have done this with much greater workflow logic and a simpler user interface with which to compose it.”

The expanded public-facing APIs further enhances workflows.

“We had built an API to create packaged connections to popular applications,” MacLennan said. “The new news is the API is now public, so any customer or partner can stitch it to any downstream workflow system they want.”

Finally, Barracuda is introducing Barracuda Data Inspector, a new offering that  helps customers find sensitive data in OneDrive and SharePoint, classifying data and helping customers meet regulatory compliance requirements.

“We built this from scratch within our Data Protection unit,” Jefferson said. “We tested Data Inspector for the last year with customers and got partners and got feedback.

The tool’s main focus is compliance.

“Customers didn’t want another tool to give them more vulnerabilities to chase, and low fidelity incidents l can be handled through the tool,” Jefferson said. “Data Inspector has the best optical recognition tools and character recognition engines. It comes with 130 built in classifiers around thinks like PII, and gives the ability for customers to build their own classifiers around their own IP or SKUs.”

Barracuda Data Inspector will start by supporting OneDrive and SharePoint. It will be sold as a paid SaaS-based service per user per month, which is not impacted by the amount of data.”