Τhe SHIELD project proposes a universal solution for dynamically establishing and deploying virtual security infrastructures into ISP and corporate networks. SHIELD builds on the huge momentum of Network Functions Virtualisation (NFV), as currently standardised by ETSI, in order to virtualise security appliances into virtual Network Security Functions (vNSFs), to be instantiated within the network infrastructure using NFV technologies and concepts, effectively monitoring and filtering network traffic in a distributed manner. Logs and metrics from vNSFs are aggregated into an information-driven Data Analysis and Remediation Engine (DARE), which leverages state-of-the-art big data storage and analytics in order to predict specific vulnerabilities and attacks by analysing the network and understanding the adversary possibilities, behaviour and intent.
The SHIELD virtual security infrastructure can either used by the ISP internally for network monitoring and protection, but it can also be offered as-a-service to ISP customers; for this purpose, SHIELD establishes a “vNSF Store”, i.e. a repository of available virtual security functions (firewalls, DPIs, content filters etc.) from which the ISP customers can select the ones which best match their needs and deploy them to protect their infrastructure. This approach promotes openness and interoperability of security functions and offers an affordable, zero-CAPEX security solution for citizens and SMEs. Moreover, SHIELD services can be easily scaled up or down, configured and upgraded according to customers’ needs, as opposed to security solutions based on monolithic hardware.