Veriflow Announces Platform GA and Survey Results That Reveal Complexity, Change and Human Factors Are Key Causes of Today’s Network Outages and Vulnerabilities
Veriflow this week announced the general availability of its new platform that was designed to eliminate network outages and vulnerabilities across complex networks. The company also announced the results of its October survey that revealed complexity, change and human factors are the key causes of today’s network outages and vulnerabilities.
Applying Formal Verification Principles to the Network
The Veriflow platform uses patented continuous network verification algorithms to predict all possible network-wide behavior and to mathematically verify whether this network model meets desired security and resilience policies. Built for network administrators, engineers, architects, and executives, the virtual appliance, which can be deployed in the cloud or on premises, minimizes the risk of network vulnerabilities and outages, reduces staff time required for manual management processes — including change verification and compliance — and reduces time to resolution of incidents.
Among its first customers is Pandora. Senior director of network engineering at Pandora, James Kelty said, “Our business is dynamic, and our networks are complex. We need to make rapid changes while avoiding the risk of outages and vulnerabilities. We chose Veriflow because it helps us catch network problems before they happen, and no other solution does that proactively and accurately. We can now easily verify if the network is behaving exactly as expected.”
Typically, network engineers have identified anomalies either through ad hoc checks, such as manual reachability and device configuration tests, or through monitoring of ongoing events and flows. However, ad hoc checks fail to provide any guarantees, and monitoring can only detect problems after they have already begun. Often, an outage will be undetected for hours after a change, and a segmentation vulnerability may lie undiscovered for months until after it is exploited. Rather than waiting for such incidents to occur, Veriflow works by continually assuring that end-to-end service and security policies are correctly implemented for all possible traffic, pinpointing any vulnerabilities.
Eric Hanselman, chief analyst at 451 Research said, “Veriflow draws inspiration from formal verification, a technique in which the operational states of a system are mathematically verified. Microprocessor designs, for example, are formally verified before being fabricated; and NASA rovers are still traversing the Martian landscape years after landing in part because the correctness of critical elements of their flight software were mathematically proven. Veriflow has applied these concepts to validating network design and operation in interesting new ways.”
New Survey Report
In addition to launching its platform, Veriflow also announced the results of its global survey. The report was conducted by Dimensional Research and surveyed 315 network professionals about their experiences with network outages, vulnerabilities and compliance.
Among the findings, 97 percent admit that human factors cause network outages, two thirds state that monitoring solutions fail to predict most issues, 74 percent indicate network changes significantly impact the business several times a year or more, and 4 out of 10 companies do not have network segmentation properly implemented. The full report can be downloaded here.
In additional findings, the report illustrated that there is almost universal agreement that human factors lead to network outages, and in many cases these outages are quite frequent. Participants report numerous outages occur every year associated with changes to the network and identify growing complexity of the network as a contributing factor. When an issue does occur, hours typically pass before the issue is reported, and once reported, it requires hours more to resolve.
James Brear, president and CEO of Veriflow said the point of the survey was to capture how network professionals balanced increased network complexity and required changes with network uptime, availability, security and compliance requirements. In his observation of the survey’s results, Brear said, “It’s clear that many organizations settle for suboptimal network management solutions, thus costing them hours to report and resolve network issues. This problem highlights the importance of having a solution that predicts the impacts of network changes, identifies outages and vulnerabilities, and accelerates resolution time of network issues.”
Given continual issues with network outages and vulnerabilities, respondents agreed on a few key traits they would like to see in an ideal network solution. For example, 87 percent highly value a solution that predicts impending network outages; 85 percent highly value a solution that accelerates network issue resolution; 79 percent highly value continuous verification of compliance and automation of compliance reporting; and 86 percent highly value the ability to pinpoint network segmentation and micro-segmentation vulnerabilities.
With regards to the report’s methodology, it was conducted by Dimensional Research in October 2016, surveyed 315 network professionals at organizations with 1,000-plus employees in order to capture how they balanced increasing network complexity and required changes while maintaining uptime, availability, security and compliance requirements.
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