Network Security in 2022: A Definitive Guide

network security: a definitive guide

Network Security in 2022: A Definitive Guide

  Cyvatar | 06/13/2022

What is network security?

Network security is a broad concept encompassing a wide range of technologies, devices, and processes.

In layman’s terms, it is a set of rules and configurations created to protect the integrity, confidentiality, and accessibility of computer and data networks through software and hardware technologies.

Regardless of size, industry, or infrastructure, every organization requires network security solutions to protect it from the ever-changing landscape of cyber threats in the wild today.

How does network security work?

There are many sections to consider regarding network security within an organization. An attack or breach can occur in any section of an organization’s network. For this reason, your organization’s hardware, policies, and software need to be updated and designed to circumvent attacks.

A typical network security system consists of three types of network security:

  • Physical
  • Technical
  • Administrative
  1. Physical Network Security

The controls are put in place to prevent unauthorized personnel from accessing components physically in your company.

This entails physically protecting people trying to access your router, hard drives, systems, etc. This network security system relies on protective devices like biometrics and locks present within your organization.

  1. Technical Network Security

It mainly deals with data network security. Technical security protects data that is stored on the network. This data regularly moves in and out of your network.

The protection process here occurs twofold, as a data network security control from outside threats and hackers; and malicious attempts from employees within the organization.

  1. Administrative Network Security

The administrative network security system provides network security solutions via security policies and processes that control user behavior.

It controls how users are authenticated within the network, determines their level of access, and how the IT department or cybersecurity team adjusts to the network infrastructure.

What are the benefits of Network Security?

There are network security tools and devices available to assist your organization in protecting sensitive information and its overall performance, reputation, and even its ability to stay in business.

The ability to continue operating and maintain a good reputation are two essential advantages of adequate network security.

Businesses that are victims of cyberattacks are frequently ruined from within, unable to deliver services or effectively address customer needs. Similarly, networks play a significant role in internal company processes.

When they are attacked, those processes tend to grind to a halt, hampering an organization’s ability to conduct business or even resume normal operations.

However, rather more damaging is the negative impact a network breach can have on your company’s reputation.

It’s easy to see what’s at stake regarding network security:

  • The loss or corruption of valuable data.
  • Significant disruption to customer service and internal processes.
  • The reputational damage may last long after other damages have been repaired.

Per a study, 66 percent of SMBs would be forced to shut down (temporarily or permanently) following a data breach. Even more significantly, established companies may be unable to reclaim their former prominence.

On the other hand, trustworthy network security software and hardware, combined with the appropriate policies and strategies, can help ensure that their impact is minimized when cyberattacks occur.

Network security protection and tools

Your network regularly has to face threats of all shapes and sizes. Gone are the days when hackers and cybercriminals worked with minimal tools. Today, hackers and threats are usually well funded, allowing them to use expansive methods to breach and attack your network.

For this reason, you need to ensure secure networking with the latest network security tools. 

Below are 14 network security tools and techniques that every organization needs to implement to prevent attacks:

  1. Control of Access

If cybercriminals cannot gain access to your network, the amount of damage they can inflict will be severely limited.

However, in addition to preventing unauthorized access, keep in mind that even authorized users can pose a threat.

Access control allows you to improve network security by restricting user access and resources to only those parts of the network that are directly relevant to individual users’ responsibilities.

  1. Malware Protection Software

Malware, which can take the form of viruses, trojans, worms, keyloggers, spyware, and other malicious software, is designed to spread through computer networks and infect systems.

Anti-malware tools are network security software that detects and prevents the spread of malicious programs. Anti-malware and antivirus software are also able to assist in the resolution of malware infections, thereby minimizing damage and ensuring secure networking.

  1. Detection of Anomalies

It can be hard to identify anomalies in your network if you don’t have a more robust understanding of how it should work.

detection of anomalies in a network
Network anomaly detection

Network anomaly detection engines (ADE) help you to analyze your network so that you are alerted quickly enough to respond when breaches occur.

  1. Application Safety

Applications are a defensive vulnerability that many attackers can misuse. Application security aids in the placement of security parameters for any applications that may be relevant to the security of your network.

  1. Data Loss Prevention (DLP)

The human element is usually the weakest link in network security. DLP technologies and policies prevent staff and other users from misusing and potentially compromising sensitive data or allowing sensitive data to leave the network.

  1. Email Safety

Email security, like DLP, focuses on mitigating human-related security flaws. Attackers use phishing strategies to persuade email recipients to share sensitive information via desktop or mobile devices or inadvertently download malware and trojans onto the targeted network.

Email security also aids in the identification of potentially dangerous and suspicious emails and can also be used to stop attacks and prevent the sharing of sensitive data.

  1. Endpoint Protection

Bring your own device (BYOD) is becoming increasingly popular in the business world, where the difference between personal and business computing devices is nonexistent.

Unfortunately, when users rely on personal devices to access business networks, they can become vulnerable targets. Endpoint security provides an added layer of protection between remote devices and business networks.

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Cyvatar’s Cybersecurity Prevention Plan.
  1. Firewall

It is similar to gates and barriers in that they can be used to secure the borders between your network and the internet. Firewalls manage network traffic by allowing authorized traffic through while blocking non-authorized traffic.

  1. Intrusion Detection and Prevention Systems

Intrusion prevention systems regularly scan and analyze network traffic to identify and respond to attacks as quickly as they can.

intrusion detection system vs intrusion prevention system
How intrusion detection and prevention systems work

These systems regularly maintain a database of known attack methods to detect threats as soon as they appear.

  1. Network Segmentation

There are various types of network traffic, each with its own set of security risks. Network segmentation enables you to grant the right traffic access while restricting traffic from suspicious sources.

There are different architectures and methods for setting up network segmentation for your network. A network segmentation strategy could be enabled based on the size of your organization.

  1. Security Information and Event Management (SIEM)

Getting the right information from so many different tools and resources can be difficult, especially when time is of the essence. SIEM tools and software provide first responders with the information to act quickly.

  1. Virtual Private Network (VPN)

VPN security tools ensure secure networking and allow endpoint devices to communicate with one another. Remote-access VPNs typically use IPsec or Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) for authentication, resulting in an encrypted line that prevents eavesdropping by third parties.

  1. Web Security

It is a catch-all term for businesses’ network security measures to ensure safe web use when connected to an internal network. It includes security tools, hardware, policies, and more. This prevents web-based threats from using browsers as entry points into the network.

  1. Wireless Security

Wireless networks are usually less secure than traditional networks. As a result, strict wireless security measures ensure that threat actors do not gain access.

Network security is a part of internet security

Internet security encompasses a large umbrella of different types of security. These include three distinct types of Internet security, namely:

  • Network Security
  • Cybersecurity
  • Information Security

Relation between cybersecurity, network and information security.

  1. Network Security

Network security is the process of safeguarding the functionality and integrity of your network and data. It comprises terms for both hardware and software.

Access to the network is managed by effective network security. It detects and prevents a wide range of threats from entering or propagating on your network. Risks to Network Security:

  • Viruses, worms, and trojans
  • Denial of Service (DOS) attack
  • Zero-day attack
  1. Cybersecurity

Cybersecurity is the process of protecting systems, networks, and programs from digital threats. Cybersecurity approaches include methods for assisting and securing various digital components.

Depending on the type of network you are linked to and the type of cyber-attacks you are vulnerable to, there are several approaches to implementing cyber security. Common cybersecurity threats are:

  • Social engineering
  • Brute force
  • Baiting
  • Ransomware
  1. Network Information Security (InfoSec)

Information security refers to the safeguards to keep documents safe from illegal access and usage. It guarantees confidentiality, integrity, and accessibility. Cyber security and network safety are subsets of information security. It is critical for every large-scale organization or firm. Data might be digital or tangible.

Network Security Principles

There are a number of network security principles that have been developed over the years in order to ensure complete protection of an organization’s network. These principles, when upheld, provide maximum protection to an organization and its data.

Let’s take a look at them below:

  • Confidentiality

The degree of confidentiality determines the information’s secret. According to the principle, only the sender and receiver will have access to the data transmitted between them.

Confidentiality is jeopardized if an unauthorized individual has access to a message.

Assume sender A wishes to convey some secret information to receiver B, with the information intercepted by attacker C. An intruder now has access to private information. 

Confidentiality is a very important aspect to consider when it comes to network protection.

  • Authentication

Authentication is the mechanism used to identify a user, system, or entity. It verifies the individual’s identity while attempting to gain access to the information. Most authentication is done with a username and password– the authorized person whose pre-registered identity can prove their identity and access sensitive information.

  • Integrity

It ensures that the information received is precise and accurate. The integrity of the communication is lost if the content of the message is modified after the sender sends it but before it reaches the intended receiver.

  • Non-Repudiation

Non-repudiation is a method that prevents message content from being denied over a network. In rare circumstances, the communication is sent and then rejected. However, non-repudiation does not allow the sender to refuse the receiver.

  • Access Control

Access control is established by the principles of role management and rule management. Role management shows who should have access to the data, whereas rule management determines how one can access the data. The information displayed is determined by who is accessing it.

  • Availability

The availability principle states that the resources will be available to the authorized person at all times. Systems should have enough information available to satisfy user requests. If information is not easily accessible, it is not valuable.

Network Security Technologies

In order to ensure complete protection of a given network or a business, it is paramount to couple your network security with the right network security technologies.

When it comes to said network security technologies, these are what are primarily used in the modern day:

  • Data Loss Prevention

Data Loss Prevention is the technology concerned with determining whether the data sent out by the organization is sensitive enough to impede commercial operations.

Typically, data is exchanged via email, and with this technology, the emails have been checked to verify that they are not transporting confidential material out of the firm.

Using this technology, all emails and attachments are closely checked to verify that all material transferred outside the firm is appropriate and not sensitive.

  • Intrusion Detection System

An intrusion detection system (IDS) is a technology that monitors every piece of traffic entering an organization to guarantee that it is not hostile.

This technology is primarily concerned with providing a careful look at the traffic to make sure that it is something that the organization should allow in.

It can also be considered a tool in charge of inspecting traffic and generating an alarm if it is discovered to be malicious or looks to have originated from an untrusted source.

  • Intrusion Prevention System

The Intrusion Prevention System (IPS) is a system or program that takes action against malicious traffic identified by the IDS. When a packet enters the system that is deemed untrustworthy, the IPS typically drops it.

It is the primary safeguard that ensures harmful traffic does not access the organization’s network. It is IPS that ensures that all traffic entering the system complies with the policies specified by the organizations and does not interfere with the operation of the systems in any way.

  • Security Incident and Event Management

SIEM is another name for it. It is primarily concerned with triggering the alert whenever anything odd is discovered on the organization’s network.

It also keeps track of logs that are generated when guaranteeing network security. Several tools can be linked to SIEM to ensure that anything dangerous generates an alert so that the security team can take action and maintain the internal environment safe.

It can also be seen as the central system to which other tools are linked. All of the technologies function as peers, each protecting the network in its own way.

  • Next-Generation Firewall

The firewall serves as the initial line of defense for any system or network. Firewalls are classified according to their function. Network firewalls are used to safeguard the Internet, whereas web application firewalls are intended to protect the online application.

This technique was created to defend the internal network from anomalous activity and to ensure that nothing dangerous enters the network. The technology assures that the ports are only available for appropriate communication and that untrusted data does not enter the system in any case.

The firewall could either allow traffic to enter or implement port filtration to ensure that any traffic passing through it is relevant to the service running on any given port.

  • Antivirus

Another tool utilized in cybersecurity is antivirus software. Its name implies that it safeguards the system from viruses. A virus is simply malicious code that causes the host or network to perform unexpected actions.

It is installed on the network and can also be used as end-point security. To protect oneself from virus attacks, any network-connected device can have antivirus software installed.

The antivirus analyzes the signatures in its collection to determine whether a particular file was infected with a virus. The most recent antivirus software can use anomalies to detect viruses and take action against them.

Network security services and solutions

Cyvatar provides complete security solutions for your organization, be it your network security or cybersecurity. Connect with our seasoned cybersecurity experts to learn how you can use effortless security services for your business.

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