Why Migrate From Cisco NAC Appliance To ISE?

why1I have received the question why should I migrate from NAC appliance to Identity Services Engine (ISE)?” a handful of times. This post will provide some reasons why you should consider migrating over. Regarding how to migrate and what discounts you could receive by migrating, see this post that covers these questions HERE.

Lets start off by looking at Cisco NAC and ISE.  Continue reading

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Identity Services Engine ISE 1.3 Out Now – First Look

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Cisco just released the latest version of ISE aka Identity Services Engine version 1.3 on Oct 31st. ISE is Cisco’s flagship access control technology (more on ISE found HERE and how to build a Lab found HERE). In summary, ISE can tell you who and what is on the network, provision the proper access and even remediate devices that are out of expected security posture. You can find the formal release notes for ISE 1.3 HERE.

ISE 1.3’s main new features revolve around providing enhanced guest services such as simplifying the process to on-board new mobile devices. There are  other improvements I’ll cover in this post as well. Lets take a look at the new 1.3 version of ISE.  Continue reading

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Cisco ISE helps achieve at least half of SANS 20 Critical Security Controls

Aman Diwakar did a great post on how Cisco ISE aligns with the SANS 20 Critical Security Controls. The original post can be found here

Also, Lancope offers more ways to meet the SANS 20 Critical Security Controls. More on that can be found HERE

digital-globe Continue reading

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How to build a basic Cisco Identity Services Engine ISE home lab

I’ve posted about configuring Cisco Identity Services Engine ISE for a few use cases however have had requests to explain the steps to setup a basic lab. This post serves as a guide to get a basic ISE lab running to test LAN or Mobile devices. My lab uses an Apple Macmini as an ESXI 5.1 server hosting the ISE virtual machine (explained HERE).  See the configuration guides for details on configuring a lab.

Virtual Machine Setup: Download the latest ISE .ISO file from cisco.com. Access the ESXI GUI and select New Machine. The recommended specs for a custom New Machine:

  • Virtual Machine version 7
  • Linux 5 32 bit
  • 2 virtual CPU
  • 4 gig of memory
  • 60 gig of space – thin provisioning (I find thick isn’t necessary for a lab) Continue reading
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Post NAC: Cisco Identity Services Engine (ISE) and Lancope StealthWatch for Total Access Control

Controlling who and what access your network is a critical element to keep your resources safe from malicious threats. Network Admission Control (NAC) solutions like the Cisco Identity Services Engine (ISE) can police who and what is permitted network access as well as enforce policy for those devices. Examples would be permitting an administrator with a government furnished Windows 7 laptop access to VLAN 10, which holds internal servers, while provisioning a marketing professional’s iPad with VLAN 20 access, which is limited to Internet and email through the use of ACLs. Continue reading

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Installing Lancope StealthWatch on a Mac mini for Small Lab

Lancope enables visibility for security and network performance. Security capabilities focus on identifying insider threats such as botnets, malware and data loss using non-signature network wide correlation of all traffic. Pretty much anything touching the physical or virtual network leaves a footprint known as NetFlow that is investigated for malicious intent and performance statics.

Lancope offers a virtual and physical appliance option for the StealthWatch technology making it easy to build a lab. This post will explain how to build a simple Lancope lab integrated with Cisco ISE 1.2 beta using an Apple Mac mini server hosting vSphere ESXI 5.1 with ASA 5505 firewall. Continue reading

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Situational Awareness For Cyber Threat Defense

Aamir Lakhani did a great post on Situational Awareness. The original post ca be found HERE

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Illustration by Kekai Kotaki

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Cisco Systems in their Cyber Security Threat Defense white papers outlines how the network security threat landscape is evolving. They describe how modern attacks are stealthy and evade traditional security perimeter defenses. Continue reading

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Cisco’s Cyber Solutions – What Is Happening In Your Network

WatchingToday’s threat landscape is loaded with malicious websites, malware and other risks that attack users every nanosecond of the day.  There isn’t a single product available that can guarantee protection from cyber threats. Older solutions leveraging static technologies such as signatures are not good enough. The best approach for dealing with advanced threats is continuously monitoring the entire network through layering security technologies. Continue reading

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