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Palo Alto launches an enterprise-grade security pack for remote workers

Palo Alto launches an enterprise-grade security pack for remote workers

Palo Alto’s Okyo Garde package includes a Wi-Fi-6-based hardware device and mobile application software to deliver malware, ransomware and phishing protection.

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Palo Alto Networks has rolled out a Wi-Fi based package that the company says provides remote workers with enterprise-class security features.

Called Okyo Garde, the bundle incuds Wi-Fi-6-based hardware and mobile application-security software that includes threat-intelligence updates, and sells the hardware and software to enterprises as a customisable subscription. The package also offers malware and ransomware prevention, phishing protection, infected device detection, and suspicious-activity monitoring and control, the company said.

Workers’ homes are becoming enterprise “branches of one” with multiple devices without IT teams or a deep set of cybersecurity protections, yet they face the same threat landscape as any enterprise, said Mario Queiroz, executive vice president of Palo Alto Networks. Threat actors may even see them as more vulnerable and therefore attractive entry points into the corporate network, Queiroz said.

“To design for the next decade of work, we need to ensure that all offices are just as secure—whether it’s an office at headquarters, just a spare bedroom or the kitchen table,” Queiroz wrote in a blog about the announcement.

The Okyo Garde device is controlled via a mobile-phone app and discovers any other devices connected to the home network—smart speakers, smart TVs or other computers. The app identifies devices that are unprotected and can isolate that device. The application ties back into Palo Alto’s threat-detection database to asses whether other devices are vulnerable and should be blocked. The app can segment the work environment from the household network to reduce security exposure.

“Okyo offers home and small- to medium-business users the kind of cybersecurity support that is traditionally done in campus environments by IT staff,” Queiroz said. 

For those users who are tied to a larger corporate network, Okyo will be integrated with Palo Alto’s core Prisma cloud-based security package that includes access control, advanced threat protection, user behavior monitoring, and other services to protect enterprise applications and resources.

Managed through a single console, Prisma includes firewall as a service, zero-trust network access, a cloud-access security broker and a secure web gateway. Prisma Access is also a key piece of Palo Alto Networks’ secure access service edge (SASE) offering, which is largely comprised of SD-WAN technology Palo Alto bought with CloudGenix last year.

The Okyo Garde Enterprise Edition, with Prisma Access integration, is expected to be available in 2022. 

Okyo Garde can also be ordered with the Okyo Concierge Service to provide small businesses or individuals with 24/7 support and troubleshooting.

Okyo Garde subscriptions start at US$349/year and include a mesh-enabled Wi-Fi 6 system. In the U.S., Okyo Garde can be pre-ordered from okyo.com, with availability expected this fall the company said. 

Palo Alto is the latest vendor to target enterprise hybrid or remote workforces.  VMware, Cisco, Juniper, and other security competitors have crafted security options for home offices or even individuals working from the nearest Starbucks.

For example, VMware’s Anywhere Workspace brings together the company’s core enterprise software products, including its Workspace ONE unified endpoint management, Carbon Black Cloud cloud-native endpoint security, and secure access service edge (SASE) components, into a single system to support a widely distributed workforce.

Cisco has a variety of packages to support hybrid workers including home SD-WAN routers that include a wireless connection for back up, and Cisco’s Umbrella security support to let users access applications remotely and securely. Other possible options include a Wi-Fi router that is an extension of the corporate network that can be managed remotely from Cisco’s DNA Spaces package. 


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