Network security is an essential part of any comprehensive IT strategy. Your network can be thought of as your company’s online “lair.” It’s the fortress that protects all your corporate data, files and information, and so it needs to be defended as such. As far as security approaches go, one of the most popular methods is to incorporate “defense layers,” or layered security, in your network to protect against the widest range of possible threats.
The central idea behind defense layers is that we incorporate more than one strategy into network security. This is done so that we can defend against threats from various sources looking to exploit different weaknesses. Layered security might, for example, involve the use of firewalls, email security, antivirus and network monitoring tools.
The use of defense layers can address multiple problems including hacking and phishing attacks, denial of service attacks, malware and viruses, and even insider attacks carried out by malicious employees.
Email has long been one of the favorite methods of attack for hackers. That’s because it’s easy to “spoof” an email address so it appears to have come from a trusted source. These kinds of emails often come with an attachment and ask the recipient to download it, or else they might include a link and ask you to go to that website (it’s fake) and enter confidential information. In either case, you’ll likely end up getting infected by malware or having your login credentials stolen.
A decent email security system is important and should offer strict delivery rules (for example, not allowing executable files as attachments) and spam filtering to ensure spoof emails are dumped in the trash where they belong.
If your computer network is your company’s lair, then the firewall can be thought of as its defensive perimeter wall. The firewall is the only thing that stands between your network and the outside world, and that means it needs to be as bulletproof as possible. One of the main benefits of your firewall defense layer is that it’s continually updated with new virus and malware definitions, and other intrusion prevention data, to ward off the latest new threats. Be sure your firewall is kept up to date at all times as the threat landscape evolves every single day.
Besides a firewall, you’ll also want a robust antivirus program to scan your system regularly. The best antivirus programs will update themselves every day so they’re current with the most prevalent threats. This type of software is proactive, scanning all types of incoming files and traffic to ensure it’s not hiding something sinister.
The last piece of your defense layers puzzle is a network monitoring tool. This is a relatively new concept in the cyber defense world. Network monitoring programs rely on modern Big Data and machine-learning technologies, and work by monitoring the network and learning about its “normal” traffic. This allows the program to immediately identify something that isn’t normal – such as a hacker – accessing your network, allowing you to investigate and promptly shut them out if need be.
By focusing on multiple layers of network security and ensuring you have an industry leading solution in place for each layer, you can rest assured your lair’s security is up to strength.
Here at AnchorSix, we take network security extremely seriously. To learn more about how we can boost your network defenses and identify possible vulnerabilities, contact us today.