In this article, we will explore the intricacies of Astra Cloud Security as well as the many benefits associated with utilizing its advanced security features. The Astra service is carefully designed to protect remote users regardless of their geographic location, extending the protective perimeter of the security infrastructure.
Note: On 10/25/23, the Astra Windows version can be downloaded from the Zyxel download library, while macOS users can directly download and use it from the Apple Store.
In the pursuit of comprehensive endpoint management, IT professionals need to ensure their devices work seamlessly across desktops, laptops, tablets, and mobile devices. Astra has addressed this challenge by extending its support to all major operating systems, including iOS, Android, Mac, and Windows*4 (Astra supports Windows 10 & Windows 11). This inclusive approach ensures that endpoints, regardless of platform, are protected by Astra's robust security.
Security, simplicity, and efficiency for your team
Astra enables your team to find the perfect balance between security, simplicity, and efficiency without having to understand the technical complexities.
What is the Astra app?
Astra is an application that provides security for VPN users, without having to be behind a firewall. Ensuring the same security controls are applied to HQ or branch networks, will extend the security to the home or remote worker. From fixed places to roaming users, providing security by tiers from VPN client, Endpoint, RAP, and Firewalls.
Why is the Astra App needed?
The Zyxel Astra is to secure your remote users, roaming everywhere outside the existing perimeter. As users are moving to home offices and working remotely on the road, the need for security is bigger than ever. With organizations today being de-centralized and IoT-driven, a growing number of connected devices including work-from-home environments can be seen. Therefore we need visibility, control, and being able to provide a response to that need.
Visibility -Providing the ability to identify people, devices, and applications without them being on-site
Control - This means that anyone attempting to access a resource must authenticate first with a strong authentication method
Being responsive - Meaning that having a timely reaction to what is being identified as malicious is key to success
How does the Astra portal and app work?
Admin: Company IT do security, member, and license management
Member: Company Employee’s endpoint protection and monitoring
What value is the Astra App providing?
The Astra App is cloud-based, and an engineless endpoint security feature which means that nothing needs to be hosted for the Astra service to work. It can predict if E-mails have been leaked where you as an administrator get a notification. It can also block unwanted traffic by monitoring what websites and content the users are looking at, where malicious and phishing websites can be blocked. Along with real-time web-browsing detection, the App also provides analyzing and visibility for the administrator with 7-day historical data.
Predicting: Predicting attacks with intelligence-led security, Security event log, Data visualizations on the dashboard
Prevent: Block access to specific web categories with Content Filtering, Allow/block websites using custom URL group, Compromised Email leak service
Detect: Threat Statistics, Show the latest security events in real-time
Response: Collecting historical records of what’s happening on your network, Security Indicator
Users today are informed, however, it only takes 1 single user to click on an image like above for anything disastrous to happen.
In our internal testing over 2 weeks and with 40 users, we found 37 UIDs hit threats and 125 URL/IP threats where 95% of the users were exposed to dangerous environments.
Registration process and installation - Admin side
*Note: One account can manage up to 2 mobile devices both iOS or Android version
Getting Started - Activate Trial
From there you can start to activate your trial.
- Navigate to https://console.astra.cloud.zyxel.com/ and log in with your MyZyxel account
- Go to the menu section "Member management"
- Fill in the required fields, namely username and e-mail address, and click "Invite"
Then you'll be able to monitor your users and the traffic from the Astra dashboard below:
Registering for your users -User side
Here you can see the service status (are you protected?) as well as the activity of processed traffic and scanned sessions as well as the websites and IPs that has been processed. As an admin you can also see what members (users) are in the risk group.
- Astra UI: Alert & Action Log
Here you'll see the alerts and information regarding the blocked websites and IPs. You'll see how many websites and IPs and number of attempts. This can be communicated throughout the organization to inform the risky users as well as prove the value that Astra App brings.
- Other settings and Licenses and members
Here you can view the members (users), and add and remove users.
- *4 Available in Q2 2023
- *5 The features are only available for admin role
Supported platforms: Windows 10 and Windows 11