Posted on Nov 14th, 2019 by Sigalit Kaidar

How to Secure Apps and Workloads in VMware NSX-T
 

Many of our customers are currently using VMware NSX-V for network virtualization and are looking to migrate to VMware NSX-T™. It’s no secret that VMWare NSX-T™ is now VMware’s primary SDN solution with noted advantages, including extensive cloud-native apps support and enhanced network security features. 

Tufin is the first network security policy management vendor to support VMware NSX-T, providing unified visibility and control for NSX-T and across your hybrid environment, and ensuring a smooth and secure migration path from NSX-v to NSX-T. 

Tufin NSX-T support will be available in Tufin Orchestration Suite 19-3 in December 2019 for our early adopters and will be generally available (GA) in January 2020.  

Manage and Secure NSX-T and Non-NSX-T in Unison

With 19-3 release Tufin users can start managing their NSX-T network security policies directly from Tufin SecureTrack . Adding NSX to SecureTrack is fast and easy. You simply go to SecureTrack ‘Monitoring’ and select ‘VMware NSX-T’ as additional environment to monitor.

How to Secure Apps and Workloads in VMware NSX-T

How can I maintain centralized visibility into the NSX-T and beyond?

It’s essential to have accurate visibility into security and connectivity, including which apps are running and their dependencies, real-time traffic flows, network objects, and access rules. But even more important, is to have a single view of the entire network so you can apply end-to-end consistent and effective segmentation and achieve faster resolution of security and connectivity incidents.

Using Tufin topology map, you can understand NSX-T in the context of the entire IT environment, how traffic traverses, and the numerous network objects (e.g. BGP, FWs, switches, routers, etc.) across the different routes. You’ll be able to automatically detect and troubleshoot broken connectivity or misconfigured rules using Tufin’s path analysis and display of blocking rules.

How to Secure Apps and Workloads in VMware NSX-T

In addition, Tufin immediately starts documenting any changes made to rules. So not only do you have an accurate, full view of the environment, you can monitor rules revisions in real time for continuous compliance and audit purposes (e.g. if a rule was deleted from the policy).

How can I avoid NSX-T rule proliferation? Does the policy include only the necessary rules to allow secure traffic?

As a security best practice, it’s recommended to avoid rule cluttering which can impact manageability and performance and create security risks.

Tufin can help eliminate redundant rules and recommend modifications to over-permissive rules in your NSX-v and NSX-T environments (a useful step to consider before migrating to NSX-T).

You can also search through NSX for shadowed, redundant, outdated, and permissive rules to prevent unnecessary access to resources, which can easily be used intentionally or unintendedly, and create a security threat.

Tufin provides meta-data for each rule, for example, the last time a rule was modified, if it’s fully/partially shadowed, rule owners, etc., to help you make an educated decision when the time comes to re-certify or decommission the rule. If needed, you can open a ticket and assign it to the rule’s owners, asking to re-certify the rule.

How to Secure Apps and Workloads in VMware NSX-T

How can I create effective micro-segmentation for NSX-T and across the entire environment?

Network segmentation policy should be applied and enforced consistently, irrespective of the underlying platform or network objects used. This ensures that the policy is enforced for apps/workloads, regardless of where they run.

With Tufin, the same zone-to-zone matrix defining a unified segmentation policy that was applied to NSX-v, will also be applied to the NSX-T environment. In addition, you’ll gain visibility into both environments in order to ensure they are aligned on policy compliance and maintain business continuity. 

If you’re new to Tufin, once your NSX-T environment is mapped, you can divide the topology map of the monitored network objects and apps into zones and define the relationships (rules) between the zones. The end result is a Unified Security Policy (USP) matrix that can be enforced across vendors and platforms as well as proactively analyze risks of potential network changes. Tufin continuously syncs the zones, so that the matrix always represents the latest status of your network.

violations

Once the USP is defined, Tufin automatically alerts which rules violate the policy and where (e.g. NSX-EDG), as well as prioritizing violation criticality. We’ve invested efforts and resources to become the most accurate and reliable solution on the market today, and cut back, if not fully eliminate false-positive alerts. We also provide exceptionally granular information, so that you can view your current defined policy vs. the violations. What’s more, you can generate a violation report as needed.

violations NSX

 

violations NSX

 

How can I accelerate network access requests?

The process of optimizing policies and managing changes can be time-consuming and involve multiple teams. We often hear it takes days, if not weeks or more, and can result in app downtime, delays in SLAs and deployment of new services.

Tufin automates the change process, reducing implementation time to minutes using customized workflows, which can also be integrated with your ITSM system. Once a change request is submitted, Tufin automatically calculates risk analysis and an access path throughout the network, simulates the path and highlights which FWs and other network objects cross the selected route, and what needs to be changed to allow the requested access. You can validate the change before enforcing it. Finally, Tufin verifies that the change was successfully implemented.

SecureTrack NSX Topology

Comprehensive support for VMware NSX-T is part of Tufin’s commitment to being the leading vendor managing security policies across the SDN and the rest of the hybrid network. Organizations migrating to VMware NSX-T, or adopting NSX-T, will need a central console to consistently manage security, compliance and connectivity across NSX-T and the rest of the hybrid environment. If you want to learn more about how Tufin enhances SDN support, contact us.