Service Providers: The Network IS the Business

Providing a Vital Service

Today's service providers face an operating environment that has changed drastically, even from just a few years ago. For example, increased customer and partner access to business infrastructure means service providers are challenged by an overwhelming responsibility to provide their customers with always-on connectivity.

These services are vital to the lives of consumers and corporations.  The highly complex and dynamic environment of today's services include offerings that range from contracted bandwidth to fully managed networks; from voice, video, data, Internet, and wireless to web services to fully hosted solutions.

The Demands of Security

The nature and interdependence of diverse technologies in service provider networks necessitates that the administration of delivery infrastructure be two-fold. It is essential to be aware of incidents that impact performance and service level guarantees. When they occur, appropriate corrective measures must be initiated immediately. It is equally important to maintain an historic and contextual perspective of the global converged network in order to understand strategic trends, plan for long-term optimization, and implement corrective change.

This dual approach to overseeing and administering provider networks is critical to define, deploy and maintain a cost effective balance of the network resources needed to support networks, while ensuring performance, reliability and availability of mission critical infrastructure.

When the service provider becomes the content and managed services provides, the security and protection of customers information is a key responsibility. It is imperative providers monitor their networks in order to detect and fend off malicious attacks, while ensuring the network retains intercept and forensic capabilities that can aid law enforcement agencies in the capture of bad actors, both internal and external.

A Growing Market

Over the past ten years, demand for bandwidth has grown explosively. And record growth is predicted to continue through 2015. With these burgeoning network traffic loads and rapidly increasing network speeds, telecommunications (fixed line, mobile, ISP, cable) and Managed Service Providers' customers are dealing with unprecedented challenges.

When the network is the business and the consequences of downtime are absolute, it's imperative that organizations have the tools at hand that help them ensure that the network stays up and that users continue to have the best possible experience.

What Customers Want

In general, the customers of telecommunications, Internet Service and Managed Service Providers want to:

• Proactively monitor their networks in order to immediately identify threats or issues that may impact customer service

• Ensure their networks are robust, scalable and able to meet and exceed customer expectations and service level agreements (SLAs)

• Support a wide range of often highly specialized network monitoring applications including lawful intercept requirements

• Reduce the time it takes to resolve issues affecting customers and drive up customer satisfaction

• Monitor complex, distributed networks that use a wide range of network types - including Ethernet, Sonet/SDH, PDH/TDM

• Protect their own and their customers' data from security threats

• Remain compliant with license obligations and other mandated standards

To combat threats posed by undesired access, malicious content, and complex hybrid attacks that utilize a multi-vector approach to circumvent static, one-dimensional security tools, security tools for enterprises require a comprehensive, context aware threat detection and prevention system.

The Solution to Security is Coming

Traditional security solutions like IDS/IPS do not scale well enough to fully protect service providers and large telecom networks.

But soon, ISC8 will be offering ISP/MSP and telecom providers a next-generation solution for their large, high profile infrastructures.  A high-speed line rate threat management tool providing real time visibility that keeps pace with the growing demand for performance; delivering real time response, for real threat protection.