Cisco Launches New 'Intent-Based' Networking To Stop Cyberattacks
Networking giant Cisco said recently that it has a new network solution that will be able to identify malware even when it is encrypted by applying machine learning and artificial intelligence technology. The new approach is based on an "intent-based" software tool, called Encrypted Traffic Analytics (ETA), which independently identifies abnormalities in data traffic.
Cisco said ETA helps networks operate more intuitively, thanks to the intent-based approach that allows it to anticipate attacks, evolve, and learn. The new technology has already been deployed to 75 different client systems, including NASA, Royal Caribbean Cruises, and Wipro.
A Software-Based Approach
The company described its new technology as a fundamental shift in its approach toward how networks are built, moving from a hardware-centric perspective to one that is driven primarily by software. Cisco said the new approach helps makes networks more agile and productive while also helping them perform better.
Because ETA focuses on the perceived intent of a piece of software, it can automate many more processes, making it possible to manage millions of devices in just minutes. Cisco said being able to manage networks at that scale will be increasingly crucial as their level of complexity continues to expand exponentially.
ETA also gleans information about the data traffic based on its context, something Cisco said previous system technologies have not been able to do. The ability of the network to use contextual information to evaluate a potential threat allows it to operate more securely and more quickly, the company said.
A DNA Suite
But the introduction of ETA was only one of many new products and upgrades the company launched for enterprise clients today. Cisco also unveiled a suite of Digital Network Architecture (DNA) services that are designed to work together.
That includes DNA Center, a management dashboard for IT teams that offers an intent-based approach to design, provisioning, policy, and assurance. The dashboard will allow IT departments to better centralize the management of all of their network functions, according to Cisco.
The suite also includes Cisco's Software-Defined Access solution, which uses automated policy enforcement and network segmentation to simplify access to the network by automating common tasks such as configuration, provisioning, and troubleshooting. The company said the solution can help to dramatically reduce the impact of a security breach.
Based on a preliminary analysis of the customers trialing the new technology, network provisioning time can be reduced by 67 percent, issue resolution time can be improved by 80 percent, and savings on operating expenditures can be increased 61 percent, Cisco said.
In addition to the new software, the company said it will also be introducing a new line of switches designed to meet the demands of mobility, cloud, IoT, and security. The new family, called the Catalyst 9000 line, will start delivering its first models this month.