What are unified threat management (UTM) firewalls?

Unified threat management (UTM) devices combine an intrusion prevention system (IPS), Web filtering and antivirus into a single hardware platform. They do have feature and functionality tradeoffs, however.

Unified threat management (UTM) devices are the latest buzz in the security market. UTM devices are multifunction devices that combine many security applications -- firewall, VPN, intrusion prevention system (IPS), Web filtering and antivirus -- into a single hardware platform.

UTM firewalls offer significant management and cost advantages over single-purpose security products, but often require feature and functionality tradeoffs. Products dedicated to a single security application are typically more feature-rich and deliver higher performance.

This was first published in November 2007

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