Coming October 25: PeerSpot Awards will be announced! Learn more

Top 8 Secure Web Gateways (SWG)

Cisco UmbrellaZscaler Internet AccessTitanHQ WebTitanPerimeter 81Skyhigh SecurityFortinet FortiGate SWGForcepoint Secure Web GatewayCisco Web Security Appliance
  1. leader badge
    The single-pane-of-glass management is really important. In today's era, administration costs and operational expenses will cost you a lot, and it reduces that as well. You don't need extra resources to manage all your parameter firewalls, looking at every single device to allow resources internal access. By just introducing the single-pane-of-glass management, it has lifted the burden off of management, especially the network management.
  2. leader badge
    The URL filtering has been the most valuable feature. The cloud proxy and integration are some of the key features. Since there is cloud waste, we can quickly provision it and start working on the configuration. On top of that, they have added a few more features. They have integrated CASB, and file sandboxing is part of it.
  3. Buyer's Guide
    Secure Web Gateways (SWG)
    September 2022
    Find out what your peers are saying about Cisco, Zscaler, TitanHQ and others in Secure Web Gateways (SWG). Updated: September 2022.
    635,513 professionals have used our research since 2012.
  4. It doesn't require installing an agent or software on individual workstations, which is very important for us. I don't have to go around every single machine and/or push updates out because of this product. The product improves on its own without having to go to workstations, which is an ideal thing because it doesn't tie up staff's time to upgrade the machines. I don't need to upgrade the software to make WebTitan work. I wish all products were that way.
  5. The feature that I have found to be most valuable is the reputation that the company has regarding privacy. Nowadays, this is critical, especially when you do all of your work online.
  6. What I found most valuable in Skyhigh Security is its stability. The solution also has good KB articles that make it simple for users to do the deployment of Skyhigh Security themselves, without the need for integrators.
  7. FortiGate is easy to configure. We configured one of the units and sent it to Indiana to be installed. We asked them to give us a call when they got it, so we could help them through the process, but they called us back to tell us it works great.
  8. report
    Use our free recommendation engine to learn which Secure Web Gateways (SWG) solutions are best for your needs.
    635,513 professionals have used our research since 2012.
  9. The policies are category-based, so knowledge of another content URL is not compulsory.The most valuable feature for me in Forcepoint Secure Web Gateway is URL filtering, though all other features of the product are okay as well.
  10. The solution provides good web reputation and anti-malware protection. The best feature of Cisco Web Security Appliance is its policy framing. It also has a good UI and it can handle traffic well. Cisco Web Security Appliance is a good product.

Advice From The Community

Read answers to top Secure Web Gateways (SWG) questions. 635,513 professionals have gotten help from our community of experts.
Netanya Carmi - PeerSpot reviewer
Netanya Carmi
Content Manager
PeerSpot (formerly IT Central Station)

Secure Web Gateways (SWG) Articles

Netanya Carmi - PeerSpot reviewer
Netanya Carmi
Content Manager
PeerSpot (formerly IT Central Station)
May 19 2022
PeerSpot’s popular crowdsourced user review platform helps technology decision-makers worldwide to better collaborate with peers and other independent technical experts to provide advice, share knowledge and expertise without vendor bias.Our users have ranked numerous popular solutions according ...
Read More »
Shibu Babuchandran - PeerSpot reviewer
Shibu Babuchandran
Regional Manager/ Service Delivery Manager at ASPL INFO Services
What Is SASE? Secure Access Service Edge, or SASE (pronounced “sassy”), is an emerging cybersecurity concept that Gartner first described in the August 2019 report. SASE is the convergence of wide-area networking or WAN, and network security services like CASB, FWaaS and Zero Trust, into a si...
Read More »

Secure Web Gateways (SWG) Topics

Why is a secure web gateway important?

Most security teams will employ a layered security strategy to protect a network. The increase in cybersecurity attacks and distributed workforces combine to form a high-risk security landscape for any organization. Workers using unsecured devices with unsecured connections expand the attack surface. On the other hand, “Crimeware-as-a-Service” makes cyberattacks available to almost anyone, thus increasing the number of attacks exponentially.

Secure web gateways (SWGs) act like filters, blocking malicious traffic, malware, and viruses from entering the organization’s network. These solutions control inbound and outbound traffic by sitting at the network perimeter and enforcing security policies. A secure web gateway (also known as web security gateway) can protect the organization’s network and users from data breaches regardless of location, operating system, or application.

One of the key benefits of a secure gateway is that it protects users from fake websites. Criminals are more sophisticated than ever when it comes to embedding threat vectors into seemingly legitimate websites. By blocking access to suspicious sites, SWGs protect the users.

How does a secure web gateway work?

A secure web gateway (SWG) consists of a software or a hardware device installed at the edge of the network. The solution can also sit at user endpoints. The gateway monitors and filters all traffic coming or going from users to the network. It checks for viruses, malicious injection, and malware, and monitors all attempts to connect.

Secure gateways filter malicious traffic by checking website addresses against a whitelist of approved sites. If a user wants to access a site that is not on the list, access is blocked. The secure gateway keeps a database of approved websites and rules for filtering.

At the same time, a secure gateway checks the data coming out from the network, and will block data coming from restricted sources. This means that sensitive data cannot leave the network.

Most secure gateways also work at the application level, restricting uploads to SaaS (software-as-a-service) applications.

Is a firewall a secure web gateway?

A secure web gateway (SWG) is any hardware or software that monitors and controls network traffic to protect against security threats. Secure gateways and firewalls, especially next-generation firewalls, both monitor and protect networks, detecting malicious activity.

Secure web gateways differ from firewalls in that firewalls look at the traffic packet by packet, allowing or blocking each one. Most firewalls don’t look at the entire file. Gateways, on the contrary, get the complete request from the client before deciding whether or not to allow access. Secure web gateways are a step beyond firewalls, extending the protection from the network level to the application level.

Features of Secure Web Gateways

There are many kinds of secure web gateways (SWGs) - some in the form of hardware devices and others offered as software solutions. Each solution provides distinct features. Still, there are controls and functions that are common to all:

  • Traffic analysis and encryption: The gateway checks all traffic - incoming or outgoing - including encrypted traffic. It compares all traffic against threat lists and reputation sources, and analyzes it to check whether it represents any threat to the network.
  • Social media protection: A secure gateway scans and filters all information coming from and going to social media.
  • Multi-protocol support: To be effective, a web secure gateway must support the most common internet protocols, like HTTPS, and including legacy options like HTTP and FTP.
  • Data-loss prevention: Filtering the access point is not enough. Web gateways also help prevent data loss by scanning documents and data packets to identify sensitive data.
  • Integration with security monitoring and zero-day anti-malware solutions: A secure web gateway alone is not enough protection against advanced threats. Integration with security monitoring systems such as security information and event management (SIEM) enhances the coverage of a web gateway. Additionally, since gateways work with known threat lists, it is important to integrate the gateway with anti-malware solutions that can detect unknown (zero-day) threats.

According to IT Central Station (soon to be Peerspot) users, the most prominent feature of web security gateway software is obviously the degree of security offered. This means that a good option will include solid malware and other threat detection to catch harmful entities masked in http format, without flagging normal applications as harmful. Solid web security gateway software will also feature rigorous data loss prevention for leak-proof data-sharing channels, as well as protection against other external threats. Additionally, deployment needs should be addressed properly by the software. Users also agree that web security gateways should include update support provided by the manufacturer.

3 Key Benefits of Secure Web Gateways

Secure web gateways (SWGs) act like a first line of defense in a layered defense security approach by filtering all traffic incoming and outgoing through the network.

Why install a secure web gateway?

1. Detects and prevents cyberattacks.

    A secure web gateway prevents users within the organization from accessing malicious or risky websites and applications, therefore preventing them from providing credentials on fake or criminal websites.

    In addition, by only approving whitelisted sites, the SWG enforces company security policies. This enables organizations with remote workers to stay protected while connecting from anywhere.

    Gateways also eliminate the SSL blind spot. Unlike other solutions, a secure gateway checks encrypted traffic. Even next-generation firewalls only cover 81% of SSL traffic. With half of the web encrypted, failing to check SSL traffic can leave a lot of traffic open to attacks or policy violations.

    2. Gives the organization visibility over network traffic.

    The gateway monitors and logs all incoming and outgoing traffic. By keeping track of what is happening on premises or in the cloud, a gateway can give you the visibility you need to understand how your network is used. Secure web gateways support compliance efforts by offering granular control over application usage. The web gateway not only controls traffic but categorizes it, enhancing policy enforcement.

    3. Optimizes cost of ownership.

    Many secure web gateway solutions are easy to implement and maintain. The integration of existing infrastructure and other solutions in the ecosystem reduces the tech-sprawl, reducing costs. When the solution is easy to manage, it extends consistent protection while minimizing management costs and time.

    Buyer's Guide
    Secure Web Gateways (SWG)
    September 2022
    Find out what your peers are saying about Cisco, Zscaler, TitanHQ and others in Secure Web Gateways (SWG). Updated: September 2022.
    635,513 professionals have used our research since 2012.