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Cisco Stealthwatch vs Palo Alto Networks Threat Prevention comparison

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Featured Review
Find out what your peers are saying about Cisco Stealthwatch vs. Palo Alto Networks Threat Prevention and other solutions. Updated: January 2020.
565,304 professionals have used our research since 2012.
Quotes From Members
We asked business professionals to review the solutions they use.
Here are some excerpts of what they said:
Pros
"Cognito Streams gives you a detailed view of what happens in the network in the form of rich metadata. It is just a super easy way to capture network traffic for important protocols, giving us an advantage. This is very helpful on a day-to-day basis.""The solution's ability to reduce alerts, by rolling up numerous alerts to create a single incident or campaign, helps in that it collapses all the events to a particular host, or a particular detection to a set of hosts. So it doesn't generate too many alerts. By and large, whatever alerts it generates are actionable, and actionable within the day.""It does a reliable job of parsing out the logs of all the network traffic so that we can ingest them into our SIEM and utilize them for threat hunting and case investigations. It is pretty robust and reliable. The administration time that we spend maintaining it or troubleshooting it is very low. So, the labor hour overhead is probably our largest benefit from it. We spend 99% of our time in Vectra investigating cases, responding to incidents, or hunting, and only around 1% of our time is spent patching, troubleshooting, or doing anything else. That's our largest benefit from Vectra.""The most valuable feature for Cognito Detect, the main solution, is that external IDS's create a lot of alerts. When I say a lot of alerts I really mean a lot of alerts. Vectra, on the other hand, contextualizes everything, reducing the number of alerts and pinpointing only the things of interest. This is a key feature for me. Because of this, a non-trained analyst can use it almost right away.""One of the most valuable features is all the correlation that it does using AI and machine learning. An example would be alerting on a host and then alerting on other things, like abnormal behavior, that it has noticed coming from the same host. It's valuable because we're a very lean team.""It gives you access, with Recall, to instant visibility into your network through something like a SIEM solution. For us, being able to correlate all of this network data without having to manage it, has provided immediate value. It gives us the ability to really work on the stuff where I and my team have expertise, instead of having to manage a SIEM solution...""It has helped us to organize our security. We get a better overview on what is happening on the network, which has helped us get quicker responses to users. If we see malicious activity, then we can quickly take action on it. Previously, we weren't getting an overview as fast as we are now, so we can now provide a quicker response.""Vectra produces actionable data using automation. That has helped us. It's less manpower now to look at incidents, which has definitely increased efficiency. Right now, in a lot of cases, our mean time to detection is within zero days. This tells me by the time something happened, and we were able to detect it, it was within the same day."

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"We find that Stealthwatch can detect the unseen.""It's easy to set up. The deployment takes one or two days. You need to collect the data from a device and then direct it to the portal.""Great network monitoring, looking at anomaly detection and evaluation.""From what I understand, you can encrypt and unencrypt traffic moving in transit. This is one of the features that we liked about it.""Overall, the implementation is very good.""It has definitely helped us improve our mean time to resolution on network issues."

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"The most valuable features are that it's user-friendly, has interesting features, URL filtering, and threat prevention.""For those who want a next-gen firewall that's easy to configure and easy to operate, I think you should go for Palo Alto.""Everything has been okay with the solution. We are using all of the features.""I like the solution's interface.""Edge protection is a valuable feature."

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Cons
"One thing which I have found where there could be improvement is with regard to the architecture, a little bit: how the brains and sensors function. It needs more flexibility with regard to the brain. If there were some flexibility in that regard, that would be helpful, because changing the mode of the brain is complex. In some cases, the change is permanent. You cannot revert it.""Integration with other security components needs improvement. It should have true integration as opposed to just being a separate pane of glass.""Vectra is still limited to packet management. It's only monitoring packet exchanges. While it can see a lot of things, it can't see everything, depending on where it's deployed. It has its limits and that's why I still have my SIEM.""I would like more integrations with IOCs and threats currently on the Internet. I would also like to know which threats are based on zero-day attacks, current botnets, etc. Therefore, I would like more information on external threats.""They use a proprietary logging format that is probably 90% similar to Bro Logs. Their biggest area of improvement is finishing out the remaining 10%. That 10% might not be beneficial to their ML engine, but that's fine. The industry standard is Zeek Logs or Bro Logs, or Bro or Zeek, depending on how old you are. While they have 90% of those fields, they're still missing some fields. In very rare instances, some community rules do not have the fields that they need, and we had to modify community rules for our logs. So, their biggest area of improvement would be to just finish their matching of the Zeek standard.""The main improvement I can see would be to integrate with more external solutions.""Some of their integrations with other sources of data, like external threat feeds, took a bit more work than I had hoped to get integrated.""If you hit a certain number of rules, triage filters, or groups, the UX responds more slowly. However, we have a complex network and a lot of rules. So, our setup might not be a typical implementation example. We even had UX engineers onsite, and they looked at issues, improvements, and user feedback. Since then, it has gotten a lot better, they even built in features that we specifically requested for our company."

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"Cisco could improve the administration for the customers.""Many of these tools require extensive on-premises hardware to run.""We would like the solution to make more advances in the way that Extreme Networks has been doing.""We determined that Stealthwatch wouldn't provide the machine learning model that we required.""The visualization could be improved, the GUI is not the best.""It's a good solid solution but integration with Network Access Control products with Cisco ISE would be good."

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"In terms of what needs improvement, the only thing I don't like is the support.""The technology firewall anomaly network could stand improvement.""The pricing has improved with the newer generation of their Firewalls, but the price could always be lower. In comparison with other solutions, I believe they're quite competitive.""Palo Alto's maintenance needs to be improved.""The documentation needs to be improved. I need better information about how to configure it and what the best practices are."

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Pricing and Cost Advice
  • "We have a desire to increase our use. However, it all comes down to budget. It's a very expensive tool that is very difficult to prove business support for. We would like to have two separate networks. We have our corporate network and PCI network, which is segregated due to payment processing. We don't have it for deployed in the PCI network. It would be good to have it fully deployed there to provide us with additional monitoring and control, but the cost associated with their licensing model makes it prohibitively expensive to deploy."
  • "At the time of purchase, we found the pricing acceptable. We had an urgency to get something in place because we had a minor breach that occurred at the tail end of 2016 to the beginning of 2017. This indicated we had a lack of ability to detect things on the network. Hence, why we moved quickly to get into the tool in place. We found things like Bitcoin mining and botnets which we closed quickly. In that regard, it was worth the money."
  • "The pricing is very good. It's less expensive than many of the tools out there."
  • "The pricing is high."
  • "Their licensing model is antiquated. I'm not a fan of their licensing model. We have to pay for licensing based on four different things. You have to pay based on the number of unique IPs, the number of logs that we send through Recall and Stream, and the size of our environment. They need to simplify their licensing down to just one thing. It should be based on the amount of data, the number of devices, or something else, but there should be just one thing for everything. That's what they need to base their licensing on. Cost-wise, they're not cheap. They were definitely the most expensive option, but you get what you pay for. They're not the cheapest option."
  • "From a pricing perspective, they are very commercially competitive. From a licensing perspective, just be conscious that some of their future cloud solutions come with additional subscriptions. Also, if you're outside of the US, you will get charged freight for the device back to your country."
  • "Cost is a big factor, as always. However, I think we have a very good price–performance ratio."
  • "Vectra's licensing model could scale to our research network, which has multiple, 100-gigabit links."
  • More Vectra AI Pricing and Cost Advice →

  • "This is an expensive product. We have quit paying for support because we don't want to have to upgrade it and keep paying for it."
  • More Cisco Stealthwatch Pricing and Cost Advice →

  • "The pricing has improved with the newer generation of their Firewalls, but the price could always be lower."
  • "The pricing could be lower."
  • More Palo Alto Networks Threat Prevention Pricing and Cost Advice →

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    Questions from the Community
    Top Answer: 
    Cognito Streams gives you a detailed view of what happens in the network in the form of rich metadata. It is just a… more »
    Top Answer: 
    Cost is a big factor, as always. However, I think we have a very good price–performance ratio.
    Top Answer: 
    If you hit a certain number of rules, triage filters, or groups, the UX responds more slowly. However, we have a complex… more »
    Top Answer: 
    Great network monitoring, looking at anomaly detection and evaluation.
    Top Answer: 
    This is an expensive solution and the license is expensive. The cost is an area where a lot of clients are a little… more »
    Top Answer: 
    The visualization could be improved, the GUI is not the best. Stealthwatch was purchased from a company called Lancope… more »
    Top Answer: 
    The resource consumption should be addressed. The technology firewall anomaly network could stand improvement. The… more »
    Comparisons
    Also Known As
    Vectra Networks, Vectra AI NDR
    Cisco Stealthwatch Enterprise, Lancope StealthWatch
    Learn More
    Overview

    Vectra threat detection and response is a complete cybersecurity platform that collects, detects, and prioritizes security alerts. The Cognito platform for Network Detection and Response (NDR) detects and responds to attacks inside cloud, data center, Internet of Things, and enterprise networks. The platform also provides automated response capabilities for low-level threats and escalates more severe anomalies to security personnel.

    Cognito captures data for multiple relevant sources and enriches it with context and security insights. It starts by deploying sensors across different networks in datacenters, IoT, or enterprise networks. The algorithm extracts relevant metadata from network and cloud traffic. The information can also be non-security information that can help investigation. 

    The data is enriched with security context to support critical use cases, such as threat detection, investigation, hunting and compliance. The platform is machine learning-based, which enables it to adapt to any new and current threat scenario. It detects, clusters, prioritizes, and anticipates attacks by using identity and host-level enforcement. 

    With the Vectra platform, a person can investigate 50 threats in just two hours. By prioritizing alerts and leveraging threat intelligence, it provides faster results.Vectra solves today’s security challenges for network detection and response. 

    One of Vectra’s best features is the emphasis they put in pairing research and data science for security insights. It offers behavior codification with unsupervised, supervised, and deep learning models. 

    The pricing is according to a subscription model with a free trial available.Vectra is available for Office 365, Azure AD and AWS Brain.

    Features of Vectra AI

    • AI-based threat detection and response. 
    • Detects attacks in real time with behavior-based threat detection. 
    • Consolidates and correlates thousands of events, detecting threats. 
    • Enriches threat investigation with a chain of evidence and data science security insights. 
    • Machine learning techniques, including deep learning and neural networks. 
    • Gives visibility into cyberattackers and analyzes all network traffic. 
    • Continuous updates with new threat detection algorithms. 
    • Provides encryption at rest and in transit. For the AWS version, it offers AES-256 encryption via AWS Key Management Service. 
    • Guaranteed availability according to the SLA of the service selected. 
    • Does not connect to public sector networks. 

    Benefits of Vectra AI

    • Behavioral models use AI to find unknown attackers. 
    • Context increases the accuracy of threat hunting. 
    • Allows for proactive action by prioritizing the most relevant information. 
    • Provides a clear picture and extensive context for investigations. 
    • Aids decision-making in the incident response process. 
    • Helps working with large datasets by capturing metadata at scale. 
    • Automates time-consuming analysis. 
    • Reduces the security analysts’ workloads on threat investigations. 

    Other advantages of Vectra services include that they can be deployed in the public, private, or hybrid cloud. Support is available via email or online ticketing with an average of 4 hours of response. Phone support is available 24/7. 

    Vectra provides full on-site and online training and documentation. Regarding the user interface, it supports several types of web browsers, such as Internet Explorer, Microsoft Edge, Firefox, Chrome, Safari and Opera. However, it is not available for mobile devices.

    Reviews from Real Users

    Here’s what PeerSpot users of Vectra AI have to say about it:

    "One of the core features is that Vectra AI triages threats and correlates them with compromised host devices. From a visibility perspective, we can better track the threat across the network. Instead of us potentially finding one device that has been impacted without Vectra AI, it will give us the visibility of everywhere that threat went. Therefore, visibility has increased for us." - Dave W., Operations Manager at a healthcare company

    "It does a reliable job of parsing out the logs of all the network traffic so that we can ingest them into our SIEM and utilize them for threat hunting and case investigations. It is pretty robust and reliable. The administration time that we spend maintaining it or troubleshooting it is very low.” - T.S., Senior Security Engineer at a manufacturing company

    Cisco Stealthwatch uses NetFlow to provide visibility across the network, data center, branch offices, and cloud. Its advanced security analytics uncover stealthy attacks on the extended network. Stealthwatch helps you use your existing network as a security sensor and enforcer to dramatically improve your threat defense.

    Threats do not discriminate between application delivery vectors, requiring an approach that has full visibility into all application traffic, including SSL encrypted content, with full user context. Threat Prevention leverages the visibility of our next-generation firewall to inspect all traffic, automatically preventing known threats, regardless of port, protocol or SSL encryption.

    Offer
    Learn more about Vectra AI
    Learn more about Cisco Stealthwatch
    Learn more about Palo Alto Networks Threat Prevention
    Sample Customers
    Tribune Media Group, Barry University, Aruba Networks, Good Technology, Riverbed, Santa Clara University, Securities Exchange, Tri-State Generation and Transmission Association
    Edge Web Hosting, Telenor Norway, Ivy Tech Community College of Indiana, Webster Financial Corporation, Westinghouse Electric, VMware, TIAA-CREF
    University of Arkansas, JBG SMITH, SkiStar AB, TRI-AD, Temple University, Telkom Indonesia
    Top Industries
    REVIEWERS
    Financial Services Firm19%
    Retailer19%
    Manufacturing Company13%
    Mining And Metals Company13%
    VISITORS READING REVIEWS
    Comms Service Provider26%
    Computer Software Company24%
    Government6%
    Financial Services Firm6%
    REVIEWERS
    Healthcare Company23%
    Financial Services Firm15%
    Manufacturing Company8%
    Logistics Company5%
    VISITORS READING REVIEWS
    Comms Service Provider36%
    Computer Software Company19%
    Government6%
    Financial Services Firm5%
    REVIEWERS
    Financial Services Firm33%
    Comms Service Provider33%
    Aerospace/Defense Firm11%
    Healthcare Company11%
    VISITORS READING REVIEWS
    Computer Software Company24%
    Comms Service Provider22%
    Government6%
    Financial Services Firm6%
    Company Size
    REVIEWERS
    Small Business18%
    Midsize Enterprise6%
    Large Enterprise76%
    VISITORS READING REVIEWS
    Small Business25%
    Midsize Enterprise23%
    Large Enterprise52%
    REVIEWERS
    Small Business14%
    Midsize Enterprise7%
    Large Enterprise79%
    VISITORS READING REVIEWS
    Small Business17%
    Midsize Enterprise13%
    Large Enterprise70%
    REVIEWERS
    Small Business29%
    Midsize Enterprise29%
    Large Enterprise43%
    Find out what your peers are saying about Cisco Stealthwatch vs. Palo Alto Networks Threat Prevention and other solutions. Updated: January 2020.
    565,304 professionals have used our research since 2012.

    Cisco Stealthwatch is ranked 4th in Network Traffic Analysis (NTA) with 6 reviews while Palo Alto Networks Threat Prevention is ranked 12th in Intrusion Detection and Prevention Software (IDPS) with 5 reviews. Cisco Stealthwatch is rated 8.4, while Palo Alto Networks Threat Prevention is rated 8.8. The top reviewer of Cisco Stealthwatch writes "Provides valuable security knowledge and helps us improve network performance". On the other hand, the top reviewer of Palo Alto Networks Threat Prevention writes "Easy to configure and easy to operate with great stability". Cisco Stealthwatch is most compared with Darktrace, SolarWinds NetFlow Traffic Analyzer, ThousandEyes, Cisco Stealthwatch Cloud and Splunk User Behavior Analytics, whereas Palo Alto Networks Threat Prevention is most compared with Darktrace, Forcepoint Next Generation Firewall, Check Point IPS, Fortinet FortiGate IPS and Cisco Sourcefire SNORT. See our Cisco Stealthwatch vs. Palo Alto Networks Threat Prevention report.

    We monitor all Network Traffic Analysis (NTA) reviews to prevent fraudulent reviews and keep review quality high. We do not post reviews by company employees or direct competitors. We validate each review for authenticity via cross-reference with LinkedIn, and personal follow-up with the reviewer when necessary.