Sophos UTM Review

Allows our client to use cross-region AWS VPCs to connect remote dev offices


What is our primary use case?

A client wanted to trial Sophos UTM 9 before deploying it into a production environment because, historically, Sophos has not had the best of reputations in AWS. The client had used Sophos in other environments, hence they wanted to stick to what they know.

How has it helped my organization?

The solution allows the client to use cross-region AWS VPCs to connect remote dev offices.

What is most valuable?

Classic defence in depth, with layered features. 

  • SPI (stateful packet inspection)
  • IPS
  • WAF 
  • VPN capability with built-in load balancer

Nothing out of the ordinary these days, but the fact Sophos has such a big name and good support was a big plus for the client who already had a relationship with Sophos support. Also, auto-scaling of UTM workers using EC2 is a nice and handy feature.

UTM 9 brings along IPSec as well as iPhone and iPad support. This seems small but it’s useful. 
Finally, Cold Standby CloudFormation script to one node, with persistent info in S3, is a convenient feature.

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

We procured this solution via the AWS Marketplace because of BYOL (bring your own licence). That was the driving force behind the choice. In addition, they had test and production environments in AWS already so it was easy to get a sign-off.

What other advice do I have?

We didn’t find any issues but I know there have been some in the last few years. I can’t comment about Sophos on AWS previously but they seem fine now. There were no problems for our client so all I can comment on is the experience they had. I think it’s taken a little while for Sophos to get experience in solving problems with their product in the AWS environment, but they do seem to go the extra mile.

This solution rates an eight out of ten, based on our experience. Support was good. You will always find problems with installations so it does hinge on support.

Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
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