An API gateway is a single-entry point for all application programming interface (API) calls made by client devices to a particular set of backend services, such as containerized web applications within a Kubernetes cluster. The API gateway sits directly between desktop and mobile clients and the different services they are trying to connect to.
The API gateway functions as a reverse proxy that fetches and aggregates appropriate resources before delivering a response to each API request. At the same time, it can perform multiple actions including IP filtering, token-based API authentication, rate limiting, and integration of web application firewall (WAF) functionality—all to support secure and reliable access to APIs as well as to microservices.
Adaptive security is a security approach that’s used to respond to potential cyber threats in real-time by continually monitoring user sessions. It can be both more user-friendly and more secure than legacy security solutions that focus on perimeter defense and is part of a zero-trust framework.
Adaptive authentication is a method for verifying user identity and authorization levels based on factors such as location, device status, and end user behavior. Using these contextual factors, adaptive authentication intelligently chooses how a user must authenticate. Because the factors are continually assessed throughout the user session, rather than just once, this authentication method delivers zero trust and improves security.
Application intelligence applies the understanding of the normal traffic flow during usual web application use and detects deviations from this that are recorded as actual or suspected security threats to backend application servers or network infrastructure.
For a website to apply SSL/TLS encryption it must have an SSL certificate. The certificate, which is stored on the webserver, acts as an ID card to prove that the website is genuine and not fake.
SSL/TLS certificates store the website’s unique ID referred to as a public key. The public key is used by a website visitor’s device to establish a secure connection with the webserver.
The SSL Labs project was created in 2009 and their goal was to provide diagnostics for identifying security concerns in computer configurations. SSL Labs created an alphabetical grading system for SSL / TLS certificates. The grades rate secure configuration out of 100. These are alphabetical grades, which range from F to A+, and are a way of measuring security configuration quality.
An A+ SSL grade is given when the server configuration is determined to be exceptional.
Asymmetric deployment refers to a configuration where a device is placed in a single location, usually the data center. With a symmetric configuration, devices are placed at both ends of the WAN, for example at the data center (the central location) and at one or more remote locations. Asymmetric deployment offers the best return on investment and should be the first course of action. Symmetric offers maximum performance for organizations with remote offices.
Traditionally, application acceleration technologies are symmetric or asymmetric, not both. This limited flexibility makes it difficult for organization to realize maximum end-user benefits without increasing the cost and complexity of deploying a given solution.
The F5 BIG-IP® WebAcceleratorTM can support simultaneous asymmetric and symmetric acceleration, providing accelerated performance for all users regardless of location.
F5 products related to Asymmetric and Symmetric Deployments: BIG-IP Local Traffic Manager
Application traffic management refers to the methodology that F5 pioneered for intercepting, inspecting, translating, and directing Web traffic to the optimum resource based on specific business policies. It allows network administrators to apply availability, scalability, security, and performance standards to any IP-based application, significantly increasing overall network application performance.
The F5 BIG-IP® product family optimizes the filtering and routing of any IP traffic to the best application or Web service, based upon content encapsulated in a packet’s header or payload. The result is a dramatic gain in operational efficiency as well as cost savings.
F5 products that support Application Traffic Management: BIG-IP product family
Application services are software solutions that improve the speed, security, and operability of applications.
Application layer security refers to ways of protecting web applications at the application layer (layer 7 of the OSI model) from malicious attacks.
Since the application layer is the closest layer to the end-user, it provides hackers with the largest threat surface. Poor app layer security can lead to performance and stability issues, data theft, and in some cases the network being taken down.
Examples of application-layer attacks include distributed denial-of-service attacks (DDoS) attacks, HTTP floods, SQL injections, cross-site scripting, parameter tampering, and Slowloris attacks. To combat these and more, most organizations have an arsenal of application layer security protection, such as web application firewalls (WAFs), secure web gateway services, and others.
An application layer gateway (ALG) is a type of security software or device that acts on behalf of the application servers on a network, protecting the servers and applications from traffic that might be malicious.