There has been a significant rise in remote work and technology especially over the past few years. While this has, for the most part, helped businesses expand and reach a wider customer base, it has also simultaneously exposed their network to various nefarious elements. Since the beginning of the pandemic in 2020, there has been a sharp increase of almost 300% when it comes to the rate of cyberattacks. Hence, it is imperative for organizations to maintain the integrity of their network security, more than ever before.
What Is Network Security?
Network security is the application of cybersecurity to protect an organization’s network infrastructure from unauthorized access that causes data theft or manipulation. It safeguards critical data, ensures only authorized users can access a network and helps detect and prevent unprecedented data breaches. Network security is implemented using both software and hardware systems depending on the solutions that one wants to achieve. An example of network security would be the use of password protection and two-factor authentication systems to access a particular network. However, unlike other security strategies, network security covers a wide range of vulnerabilities spanning the digital environment including the users, devices, applications, data, and locations. It operates based on the principle of protecting huge amounts of data that can only be accessed by following specific security rules and regulations.
How Can You Implement Network Security?
An organization’s network security can be maintained in several ways depending on the area of concern when it comes to addressing cyber threats.
A firewall is a network security system that analyzes both incoming and outgoing traffic and filters them based on your organization’s security policy. A firewall essentially acts as a barrier between your company’s internal network and the unsafe public network.
- Cloud Security
Cloud security consists of technologies and policies that are designed to save sensitive data, applications, and services stored in the cloud. It guarantees security by defending data and users against cloud threats.
- Remote work security
A spike in the usage of remote devices in recent years has made it imperative to amp up the security of such devices to ensure data and system security. This can be carried out by controlling devices that can access a certain network while maintaining private network traffic by configuring the connections.
- Network access control (NAC)
Network access control helps authenticate and authorize users by deciding who is allowed within and what they can do inside a network. NAC solutions usually operate following role-based access control (RBAC) policies dependent on the designation of the user.
- Anti-malware and antivirus software
Anti-malware and antivirus software strengthen the security of your network by preventing attacks from viruses and malware such as Trojans, worms, ransomware, and spyware.
- Endpoint security
Endpoint security involves the process of protecting the entry points or endpoints of an organization’s digital environment such as mobile devices, desktops, and laptops from being attacked by bad actors and malware. Today’s endpoint security systems are equipped to defend your devices from all kinds of sophisticated threat campaigns and strategies.
- Application security
Application security consists of all the hardware, software, and processes used to detect and solve the vulnerabilities found in a software application. This allows for safeguarding the said application from various external threats.
- Email security
Email has been the most common mode of cyberattack for threat actors. Organizations are increasingly becoming a target of email attacks especially in the form of spam and phishing scams, making it essential to strengthen their email security. Email security is typically implemented using spam filters and data encryption tools.
- Intrusion detection and prevention systems
Intrusion detection and prevention systems (IDPSs) are network security tools deployed to analyze and deal with incoming traffic containing malicious activities. While IDPSs both detect and respond to security threats, intrusion detection systems (IDSs) simply catch a security threat and flag it for review.
- Virtual private networks (VPNs)
A virtual private network (VPN) provides security by hiding the identity of the user accessing the internet. This is achieved by encrypting the data and covering up the IP address and location of the user. VPNs protect your data as they do not connect the user directly to the Internet but to a server linked to the Internet.
Enterprise Network Security Solutions
While a sophisticated network security system covering various levels of safety controls ensures enhanced security, it also calls for efficient management of such policies. This is achieved through enterprise network security platforms that streamline an organization’s security by combining them and enabling their management through a single console. A few examples of such solutions include:
- Security information and event management (SIEM) gathers data from internal security tools, combines it in a single log, and identifies anomalies.
- Network detection and response (NDR) tools that exploit AI and machine learning technology to analyze network traffic and find odd activities.
- Security orchestration, automation, and response (SOAR) solutions gather and examine security data and let security teams create and carry out automated responses to cyber threats.
- Extended detection and response (XDR) is an open cybersecurity framework that combines security tools and streamlines them for users, endpoints, cloud, applications, and data across all security layers.
What Are the Benefits of Network Security?
- Safeguards data
Network security helps safeguard sensitive data that may belong to your customers, clients, or the organization itself. It ensures reliable access to such data all the while protecting them from unprecedented security breaches.
- Prevents financial loss
A data breach can cost an organization enormous financial loss that may be impossible to recover from. The practice of network security prevents such scenarios.
- Protects business reputation
Maintaining network security also establishes a strong sense of trust among your clients and customers, thereby preserving your company’s reputation as a reliable enterprise.
The rate of cybercrimes has only been increasing by the day, with one attack being recorded every 39 seconds. With such high numbers, the only way companies can ensure business safety and continuity is by investing in a reliable network security solution.