Palo Alto Networks, Inc. is a network and enterprise security company based in Santa Clara, California. The company’s core products are a platform that includes advanced firewalls designed to provide network security, visibility and granular control of network activity based on application, user, and content identification and cloud-based offerings that extend those firewalls to cover other aspects of security. Palo Alto Networks competes against traditional firewall, IPS and IDS, and UTM vendors including Cisco,Fortinet, Cyberoam, Check Point, Juniper Networks, Allot and others
Palo Alto Networks was founded in 2005 by Nir Zuk, a former engineer from Check Point and NetScreen Technologies. Zuk was the principal developer of the first stateful inspection firewall and the first intrusion prevention system. When asked why he started Palo Alto Networks, Zuk cited his objective of solving a problem enterprises were facing with existing network security solutions: the inability to safely enable employees to use modern applications, which entailed developing a firewall that could identify and provide fine-grained control of applications.
The company produced and shipped its first firewall in 2007and debuted on the NYSE with its July 20, 2012 initial public offering
In 2009 Gartner, Inc. released a publication defining the “next-generation firewall”. In its definition, Palo Alto Networks firewalls contain application awareness, full stack visibility, extra-firewall intelligence, and upgrade paths in addition to the full capabilities of both traditional firewalls and intrusion prevention systems. Additionally, the company defines its firewall technology by the following abilities:
Since 2013 Gartner, Inc. produces an annual Magic Quadrant for Enterprise firewalls in which Palo Alto Networks is one of the companies listed in the “leaders quadrant” for this category.
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