ForeScout CounterACT Review

For larger scale projects which includes multiple sites, CounterACT can be easily deployed in a centralized or decentralized manner. Its graphical user interface could use a revamp.


Valuable Features

CounterACT is a very flexible product in terms of deployment where the users will have a Layer 2 or Layer 3 deployment depending on their network infrastructure while maintaining the product's features regardless of which deployment. For larger scale projects which includes multiple sites, CounterACT can be easily deployed in a centralized or decentralized manner. Besides that, deploying CounterACT introduces almost little-to-no network infrastructure changes.

Integration with third-party products is also an important feature of CounterACT. While many of their competitors' products can only be integrated within their own portfolio, CounterACT manages to integrate with today's top security products to cover the security gaps that many solutions may introduce. CounterACT also provides a ControlFabric platform which may allow the users to integrate all of their security and network solutions into CounterACT.

Improvements to My Organization

As a distributor's engineer working on CounterACT, there are a few vast changes that I have seen after deploying CounterACT for our customers. A few of our customers reportedly had an easier time with their auditors on endpoint compliance, where they would only need to generate and turn in CounterACT's report. This saves both the customer's and the auditor's time.

Another improvement that we can see is automated security, where the customers would not need to manually turn on and off the switch ports for their guests. CounterACT automatically recognizes these guest and provides a self-registration feature to their guest while still maintaining the customer's network security posture.

Room for Improvement

There are few areas which will need vast improvements. The CounterACT graphical user interface could use a revamp as it may not look appealing enough to the end users.

Another area which the CounterACT should improve is their ability to deliver a more precise error messages to their users. At times, the error messages are not clear enough and are too technical to understand. Some of their error messages are not generic, as they are only understandable by the ForeScout engineers.

Use of Solution

I've used it for three years.

Deployment Issues

There were no issues with deployment.

Stability Issues

There are few issues with CounterACT that need more attention, mainly it's ability to process and perform discovery faster. At times, CounterACT takes too long to determine the endpoints, which may cause delays to the end users.

CounterACT could also use a more stable management console interface. This is because there will be times where CounterACT takes too long to login to its management console.

Another issue with CounterACT is that it does not provide very meaningful error messages when some error occurs. The error messages are hidden and it does not show unless the users click on a specific button or mouse over to the problematic elements.

Scalability Issues

There have been no issues scaling it.

Customer Service and Technical Support

Customer Service:

The Customer Service is very responsive and helpful. They managed to resolve most of our issues with the products without much hassle.

Technical Support:

The Technical Support is very responsive and helpful. They managed to resolve most of our issues with the products without much hassle.

Initial Setup

Initial setup is very straightforward because there are only a few network configurations needed to be done. It does not require any downtime and could be deployed at any time during production hour. There are a few endpoint configurations that need to be done, which users can do so through their Microsoft ActiveDirectory or desktop management tools or software.

Implementation Team

We implemented the solutions with our S.I. To ensure a smooth implementation, it is crucial to have all the endpoints and network requirements ready and configured before CounterACT is installed. It is recommended to start with the default policies and work on these policies to meet customers' requirements.

ROI

As we are an implementer, we do have an ROI for all our products.

Pricing, Setup Cost and Licensing

For pricing and licensing, CounterACT is not an overly expensive product. They can fit most of our customers' budgets.

Other Solutions Considered

We managed to evaluate Cisco ISE. Cisco ISE is a complex solutions to deploy where it only supports users who use Cisco switches.

ForeScout CounterACT is a much more appealing product because of the market here in Malaysia, where the users uses multiple brands of switches with complex network infrastructure. CounterACT could easily adapt to these environments without any changes made to the customer's network infrastructure.

Other Advice

ForeScout CounterACT is like a Pandora's box, which contains a lot of functionalities that can be used to improve the customer's daily operation tasks and reduces manual workforce. It is recommended that the implementer understand what CounterACT can be used to do as different customers' business functions could use different functions of CounterACT.

Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
1 visitor found this review helpful
2 Comments
Michael VargaReal UserTOP 5LEADERBOARD

Why are you still using version 5.x? Upgrade to 7, many improvements have been made both functionally and Security.

15 February 16
Pre-Sales Engineer at a tech services company with 51-200 employeesReal UserTOP 10LEADERBOARD

Hi Michael, I think there was a typo on the report. I was using version 7.

16 February 16
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