What’s New and What’s Next for Central Firewall Management

ProductsSophos CentralSophos Firewall

There are a few recent enhancements for Sophos Central Firewall Management we want you to be aware of, and some exciting new features coming soon that will make managing customer firewalls via Sophos Central more flexible and easier than ever.

Early Access to New Regions:

Regional support can be important for local data sovereignty which is why we continue to add new region support for Sophos Central.  Sophos Central has now launched in Canada and Japan, with firewall management being available for partners and customers in both new regions.

These new regions are not yet available for customers to choose themselves, and there is another important limitation:  For partners, firewall management templates in the Central Partner Dashboard (CPD) will not yet work with customers in Canada or Japan. If you do not use firewall templates today, this may not be an issue, but if you do, be aware that templates will not apply to customer firewalls in the new regions, initially, with support expected later this year.

We will also be adding support for Firewall Central Management to the other new regions that we’ve recently announced, with Australia coming later this month, India next, and Brazil in August.

We encourage you to use these new regions with the caveats noted above and will let you know when these new regions are fully supported.  More info on getting started with new regions.

What’s New and What’s Next for Firewall Central Management:

The Central Partner Dashboard is receiving several new enhancements this year:

Recent Enhancements:

  • Provide full inventory and status of partner managed firewalls in CPD
    • Can view if firewall is directly managed by partner template or by nested customer template
    • Quicker access to customer dashboard from CPD
  • Improve flex billing process
    • Remove CFM approval process
    • Unlocked Assigned To field, can be set for any firewall
    • Improved workflow and behavior of billing page
    • Removed redundant, outdated pages

Coming Later this Month:

  • Role-Based Access Control (RBAC)
    • Enforce Central RBAC for CPD admins
    • Firewalls and groups shown in CPD will honor CPD RBAC rights set for logins, and which customer accounts they can interact with.
  • Central APIs
    • For onboarding, grouping, and retrieving status of customer firewalls
    • Scheduling firmware updates
  • Zero Touch
    • Improvements to Zero Touch process from customer dashboard
    • Zero touch deployment of hardware firewalls without needing a USB stick
    • Will work similarly to SD-RED zero-touch deployments
    • Will need to be enabled per customer account where required – contact your Sophos Channel Account Manager

Coming in August/September:

  • Full Firewall Inventory in CPD
    • All firewalls, regardless of grouping in customer account will be visible in CPD (info will already be accessible to partners via API later this month)
  • Firmware Update Scheduling
    • Partners can schedule firmware tasks directly from CPD across multiple customer accounts
  • License Status in CPD
    • Enhanced licensing status, particularly Pending field, which is sometimes inaccurate

What’s Coming Next: (No firm dates yet)

  • Backup management from CPD
  • SSO from CPD directly to customer firewalls
  • Integrate firewall licensing into customer and partner dashboards (planned for first half next year)
  • Improve layout and performance of firewall lists in CPD
  • Onboard new customer firewalls to customer accounts directly from CPD
  • True Zero touch deployment, automatically available for all accounts

Sophos Central Firewall management is getting better literally every month.  Thanks for your continued support and feedback as we continue to evolve and develop this platform to make your job easier and easier.