Web Security

The Top 10 Web Security Solutions

Discover the ten best web security solutions to protect your organization against web-based cyberthreats. Explore the benefits of Secure Web Gateways, DNS filters and browser isolation.

The Top 10 Web Security Solutions include:
  • 1. Twingate
  • 2. NordLayer Secure Internet Access
  • 3. Cisco Umbrella
  • 4. Forcepoint Secure Web Gateway
  • 5. iboss
  • 6. Palo Alto Networks URL Filtering for Web Security
  • 7. Skyhigh Secure Web Gateway
  • 8. Trend Micro InterScan Web Security
  • 9. WebTitan DNS Filter
  • 10. ZScaler Internet Access

In today’s digital workplace, web security should be a priority—particularly for organizations with remote or hybrid employees that communicate with the company network over an internet connection. Infiltrating an unsecure home Wi-Fi network isn’t the only way a cybercriminal can gain access to your corporate network; they can also trick users into installing malware from malicious websites or entering their credentials into phishing pages. To prevent these types of attack, all businesses that require their users to access the internet should consider implementing a web security solution. 

There are two parts to web security: securing your users’ internet activity, which we’ll focus on in this guide, and securing your users’ connection to the corporate network, which you can read more about in our guides to the top enterprise VPN solutions and the top zero trust network access (ZTNA) solutions

To ensure your employees can browse securely, you should consider implementing a web filter or a remote browser isolation platform. Web filters, including DNS filters and Secure Web Gateways, block users from accessing known malicious websites—including phishing pages—and prevent users from downloading web-based viruses and malware onto their machines. Remote browser isolation platforms isolate users’ internet activities within a remote sandbox environment that’s detached from your local network. This enables users to experience normal, unhindered browsing, while ensuring that any malicious pages or downloads are contained within the remote server, so they never reach the user’s system. 

In this article, we’ll explore the top ten web security solutions designed to protect your users’ internet activity. These include cloud-based Secure Web Gateways, DNS filtering solutions, and browser isolation platforms. We’ll give you some background information on the provider and the key features of each solution, as well as the type of customer that they are most suitable for.

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Twingate Logo

Twingate is a security platform founded in 2019 that offers enterprise-grade services without sacrificing usability. Its flagship zero trust network access (ZTNA) solution aims to simplify the process of enabling, monitoring, and securing user access to corporate resources through a single, easy-to-deploy platform. Twingate takes a thoughtful approach to security, with authorization always confirmed by a second or third component, depending on data sensitivity.

Twingate establishes direct peer-to-peer connections to reduce attack surfaces and prevent lateral traffic. Admins can monitor user access and adapt granular access policies for improved security and more efficient network access. The platform supports one-time passcodes, biometrics, and security key-based MFA across all resource types. It also offers a broad range of out-of-the-box integrations, reducing friction and improving visibility.

Finally, Twingate’s reporting and analytics tools can help meet compliance requirements for HIPAA, SOC 2, GDPR, and more. As a central zero trust orchestration layer, Twingate allows for the creation of best-in-class security ecosystems without needing to restructure the network. This solution is ideal for organizations in heavily regulated industries, such as government, healthcare, finance, and legal sectors, due to its highly granular access policy configurations and detailed activity logging.

NordLayer logo

NordLayer Secure Internet Access provides a comprehensive suite of web security features designed for office-based, remote, and hybrid workforces. It implements robust encryption to ensure data privacy, blocks access to harmful sites, and enables admins to manage access to specified content categories.

NordLayer Secure Internet Access provides a secure web gateway and DNS Filtering, with a business VPN offering encrypted end-to-end security that guarantees access to company resources on the network through VPN servers. The platform also includes network segmentation with Zero Trust Network Access (ZTNA). By combining these features, NordLayer delivers safe, fast internet browsing for teams, protecting users against phishing, malware, ransomware, and malicious links, and blocking access to any websites that have been restricted by admins. The platform also provides comprehensive protection for business information and sensitive data in transit for remote workers through AES 256-bit encryption.

Operating within Nord Security’s Security Service Edge (SSE) framework, NordLayer protects end users when accessing the internet and cloud applications. The platform filters harmful content from internet traffic, ensuring compliance with data protection and privacy standards and preventing unauthorized user activities. Overall, we recommend NordLayer Secure Internet Access as a strong option for organizations looking to ensure consistently secure and efficient internet access.

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Cisco logo

Cisco are a global network, infrastructure and security vendor that offer a variety of security solutions to protect digital communications across the world. Their Umbrella solution, launched in 2019, offers flexible, cloud-based security via a Secure Web Gateway. The solution combines multiple functions that admins can monitor from one user-friendly console, making it easy to add and protect devices remotely. Cisco Umbrella is available in three packages, which have been designed to protect any sized organization, from small businesses to multinational enterprises.

Cisco Umbrella offers DNS security, a Secure Web Gateway, firewall as a service (FWaaS) and cloud access security broker (CASB) functionality in a single console called the Umbrella Secure Internet Gateway (SIG). Admins can monitor threats and configure protection across all of these areas from one easy-to-use management portal. Additionally, Umbrella comes with integrated threat response so that security teams can investigate the root cause of security incidents to avoid repeat attacks.

The three Umbrella packages utilize sophisticated machine learning and extensive threat intelligence from Cisco Talos, one of the world’s largest commercial threat teams, to detect and protect against known and zero-day threats. This means that the solution can offer powerful web filtering protection against malware, phishing and DNS tunneling attacks.

Cisco Umbrella has been praised by customers for its quick and easy deployment and user-friendly management portal, that also monitors devices operating remotely from the office. Its quick deployment means that this solution offers almost immediate, reliable security coverage across all ports and protocols. This, combined with the scalable package options, makes Cisco Umbrella a good cloud option for most organizations looking for a solid web security solution.

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Forcepoint logo

Forcepoint, formerly Websense, offer a broad range of cybersecurity products, including Secure Email and Web Gateways, firewalls, and behavioral analytics. Their Secure Web Gateway solution is available as on-premise software, and as a cloud-based service. Users can also choose to create a hybrid service for protection both on-premise and away from the office. This makes it suitable for all organizations, no matter their state of cloud migration. Forcepoint’s management console supports reporting in each of these deployment environments.

Forcepoint’s SWG uses over 10,000 analyses to support their advanced threat detection, including real-time analysis of integrated data theft. Its comprehensive cloud application security allows organizations to monitor users’ cloud app behavior during work hours, as well as their online behavior, to uncover risks and remove security gaps.

The solution includes excellent logs and filters, with custom categories for activity monitoring. These granular controls allow organizations to fine-tune the level of protection to bring it in line with their company policies.

Forcepoint’s admin controls are a little complex, with customers reporting that there’s a learning curve for organizations that invest in this solution. However, the that the solution provides its customers. For this reason, we recommend Forcepoint’s Secure Web Gateway as a strong solution for mid- to enterprise-sized organizations looking for a cloud web filtering platform.

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iboss Logo

iboss’ cloud web security solution is founded on node-based technology, which the vendor calls “containerized gateways.” It delivers SaaS network security, with all firewall and proxy capabilities delivered in the cloud, meaning that customers’ networks aren’t drained of resources when running the solution. Organizations can adopt iboss’ public cloud service, implement containerized gateways in their own private cloud, or create a hybrid solution by integrating the two.

The iboss platform delivers all of its features, functions and security as a service in the cloud. This includes web filtering, malware defense and DNS protection. Delivering security in the cloud allows the solution to protect users’ internet access at all time, no matter their location. This makes the product particularly useful for organizations with a lot of remote employees. Security teams can customize filtering policies, as well as configure malware and data loss prevention rules, with these automatically applied to end users.

iboss’ solution deploys easily with 100% API-based integration, and is compatible with Office 365, MS Cloud App Security CASB and Azure. It’s easy set-up and powerful cloud-based protection make this solution ideal for enterprise organizations, who have a high number of remote employees.

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Palo Alto logo

Palo Alto Networks are a global cybersecurity leader offering enterprise-level security through AI, analytics, automation and orchestration. URL Filtering for Web Security is Palo Alto’s internet security solution, providing users with secure web access through a powerful URL filter with PAN-DB. The solution offers protection against phishing sites, HTTP-based command and control, malicious sites and pages that carry exploit kits.

Palo Alto’s URL Filtering uses a combination of static analysis and machine learning through PAN-DB to identify threats and protect users from them. PAN-DB is Palo Alto’s cloud-based URL database. This global threat intelligence allows for automated, real-time protection that blocks newly discovered malware and exploit sites.

Palo Alto’s solution offers multiple URL categories as well as a risk rating for each site, which allows admins to create more insightful policies at a granular level. The solution also features credential phishing protection that analyzes suspicious URLs for malicious content. Finally, Palo Alto’s URL Filtering includes firewall integration, which helps to simplify policy configuration and administration without affecting the speed of any web-based applications.

Customers praise Palo Alto’s URL Filtering for Web Security solution for its effective protection and clear visibility into their networks’ URL traffic. All of Palo Alto’s solutions are delivered via their integrated platform, which enable the protection of mobile devices as well as clouds and networks. We recommend this solution for any large enterprises looking for a powerful URL filtering tool, and particularly those with a number of remote employees working from different locations around the world.

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Skyhigh Security logo

Skyhigh Security is a cybersecurity provider that offers a range of data-aware, cloud-based security solutions, including a secure service edge, a cloud access security broker, network access security, app security, and web security. The Skyhigh Secure Web Gateway (formerly part of the McAfee Enterprise suite) offers intelligent, real-time protection against known and unknown web-based threats without compromising the end user’s browsing experience.

To block known threats, the Skyhigh Secure Web Gateway (SWG) uses embedded browser code emulation and an anti-malware engine that blocks malicious URLs and corrupted files. The solution’s policy engine is rule-based, which enables organizations to configure granular policies for enhanced protection and reporting. The platform also uses global threat intelligence to carry filter sites based on a profile of secure web pages and keywords.

To block unknown and zero-day threats, the platform offers remote browser isolation and a machine learning-powered and emulation-based sandbox, which ensure that any malicious activity is executed in an environment isolated from the user’s endpoint.

The Skyhigh Secure Web Gateway is a strong web filtering solution for mid-sized to large enterprises, particularly those that are looking for a web security solution as part of a wider secure service edge (SSE), as this product integrates seamlessly with Skyhigh’s SSE offering. Its keyword filtering capabilities also make it a strong solution for those in educational settings, where restrictive access controls can help protect vulnerable users.

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Trend Micro logo

Trend Micro have over 30 years of experience in producing simple, safe and trustworthy cybersecurity solutions. InterScan Web Security (IWS) is their software-only Secure Web Gateway that customers can deploy on-premise, in the cloud, or as a hybrid combination of the two. This is supported by the synchronization of policies for cloud and on-premise users.

The InterScan Web Security solution uses anti-malware, URL filtering, sandboxing and botnet detection to protect users against advanced threats such as malware and zero day exploits, as well as to protect cloud-based applications. Users that choose to deploy the cloud-based service also benefit from machine learning technology, leveraging the real-time protection of Trend Micro’s Smart Protection Network to defend the system against new and emerging threats. Admins can configure protection settings for over 1,000 applications at a granular level, which makes it easy to enforce company acceptable use policies. The management console also enables admins to view reports that allow complete visibility into web usage. These reports include real-time monitoring so that you can see web use as it happens, allowing for on-the-spot remediation.

Trend Micro’s InterScan Web Security is a powerful solution for SMBs looking for a SWG that’s particularly good at protecting mobile endpoints. Customers have reported that it’s easy to deploy and manage and are generally satisfied with Trend Micro’s support services. However, it’s usually sold as a part the vendor’s Smart Protection Complete Suite. For this reason, we recommend it particularly for those who want a SWG to fit into a broader security suite, or those who already have a strategic relationship with Trend Micro. Trend Micro also have a mature channel partner platform, with a number of partnership opportunities on offer, so this solution is also available for MSPs to leverage.

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WebTitan Logo

WebTitan DNS Filter is Titan HQ’s web filtering solution that leverages advanced domain name system filtering controls to provide strong threat protection. The WebTitan platform filters over 500 million URLs to secure users against malicious webpages (including phishing pages), viruses, and web-based malware. The solution is easy to use and features a comprehensive policy engine with granular rules and categories for content filtering to match any business need.

WebTitan DNS Filter stops users from access malicious web content with a URL database that covers over 650 million end users. The solution provides protection against malware and viruses by blocking dangerous downloads, and the AI-powered engines detect zero-day phishing domains and malicious URLs to help prevent users falling victim to phishing attacks. Admins can manage and monitor their web security remotely via API with no latency. Through the remote management console, admins can configure granular policies per user, IP agent and group. Admins can also generate a wealth of reports to ensure that WebTitan is catching the threats facing their organization. These reports can also be used to ensure and prove compliance with legal standards.

Customers praise the WebTitan platform for it’s ease of use, cost-effectiveness and granular content filtering policies. The solution is fast and highly scalable, which makes it easy to add new devices to the platform as an organization grows. This flexibility makes it suitable for SMBs and larger enterprises alike. Its margin friendly pricing and fully multitenant environment also make WebTitan a popular choice amongst the MSP community. Finally, WebTitan is a particularly strong solution for education environments, allowing admins to configure policies to protect students and ensure that educational compliance standards are met.

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Zscaler logo

ZScaler are market leaders in providing powerful cloud-based web security that grows with the customer’s organization. Their Internet Access (ZIA) solution is a Secure Web Gateway that proxies and filters web traffic from head offices, branch locations and mobile devices. Customers can also purchase optional features, such as a firewall and cloud-based sandboxing, to further enhance their web protection. The lack of hardware means that ZIA is quick and easy to deploy, so that customers are protected within minutes of investing in the solution.

The ZScaler Internet Access SWG offers advanced malware detection across all web content, including SSL and TLS traffic, regardless of the website’s reputation. Because it’s a cloud-based application, ZIA is able to utilize powerful machine learning technology to protect against emerging zero-day exploits. The solution also includes a basic firewall, DNS filtering and CASB functionality, which protect cloud-based applications as well as actual web browsing. Customers have the option to add and upgrade features for an additional cost. The solution features an easy-to-use management platform, where admins can access real-time reporting and analytics, with per-user views to enable enhanced protection for each user.

Quick to deploy and with instant Office 365 integration, ZScaler’s solution is ideal for mid- to large-sized enterprises looking for a purely cloud-based Secure Web Gateway. ZScaler hold a large market share in the US, but their large cloud footprint means that they’re also able to offer this solution in locations that competitors tend to be unable to serve, such as the Middle East, Russia and Africa. This makes ZIA a particularly strong solution for global organizations with offices in these areas.

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The Top Web Security Solutions - Expert Insights