Our Firewall Analytics tool enables customers to quickly identify and investigate security threats using an intuitive interface. Until now, this tool had only been available to our Enterprise customers, who have been using it to get detailed insights into their traffic and better tailor their security configurations. Today, we are excited to make Firewall Analytics available to all paid plans and share details on several recent improvements we have made.
All paid plans are now able to take advantage of these capabilities, along with several important enhancements we’ve made to improve our customers’ workflow and productivity.
Increased Data Retention and Adaptive Sampling
Previously, Enterprise customers could view 14 days of Firewall Analytics for their domains. Today we’re increasing that retention to 30 days, and again to 90 days in the coming months. Business and Professional plan zones will get 30 and 3 days of retention, respectively.
In addition to the extended retention, we are introducing adaptive sampling to guarantee that Firewall Analytics results are displayed in the Cloudflare Dashboard quickly and reliably, even when you are under a massive attack or otherwise receiving a large volume of requests.
Adaptive sampling works similar to Netflix: when your internet connection runs low on bandwidth, you receive a slightly downscaled version of the video stream you are watching. When your bandwidth recovers, Netflix then upscales back to the highest quality available.
Firewall Analytics does this sampling on each query, ensuring that customers see the best precision available in the UI given current load on the zone. When results are sampled, the sampling rate will be displayed as shown below:
As adoption of our expressive Firewall Rules engine has grown, one consistent ask we’ve heard from customers is for a more streamlined way to see all Firewall Events generated by a specific rule. Until today, if a malicious request matched multiple rules, only the last one to execute was shown in the Activity Log, requiring customers to click into the request to see if the rule they’re investigating was listed as an “Additional match”.
To streamline this process, we’ve changed how the Firewall Analytics UI interacts with the Activity Log. Customers can now filter by a specific rule (or any other criteria) and see a row for each event generated by that rule. This change also makes it easier to review all requests that would have been blocked by a rule by creating it in Log mode first before changing it to Block.
Challenge Solve Rates to help reduce False Positives
When our customers write rules to block undesired, automated traffic they want to make sure they’re not blocking or challenging desired traffic, e.g., humans wanting to make a purchase should be allowed but not bots scraping pricing.
To help customers determine what percent of CAPTCHA challenges returned to users may have been unnecessary, i.e., false positives, we are now showing the Challenge Solve Rate (CSR) for each rule. If you’re seeing rates higher than expected, e.g., for your Bot Management rules, you may want to relax the rule criteria. If the rate you see is 0% indicating that no CAPTCHAs are being solved, you may want to change the rule to Block outright rather than challenge.
Hovering over the CSR rate will reveal the number of CAPTCHAs issued vs. solved:
Exporting Firewall Events
Business and Enterprise customers can now export a set of 500 events from the Activity Log. The data exported are those events that remain after any selected filters have been applied.
Sometimes the columns shown in the Activity Log do not contain the details you want to see to analyze the threat. When this happens, you can now click “Edit Columns” to select the fields you want to see. For example, a customer diagnosing a Bot related issue may want to also view the User-Agent and the source country whereas a customer investigating a DDoS attack may want to see IP addresses, ASNs, Path, and other attributes. You can now customize what you’d like to see as shown below.
We would love to hear your feedback and suggestions, so feel free to reach out to us via our Community forums or through your Customer Success team.
If you’d like to receive more updates like this one directly to your inbox, please subscribe to our Blog!