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Security on the Wire

3 Network Security Concepts Every Organization Should Utilize in 2018

by Michael Clarke

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Network security concepts change almost as often as Kim Kardashian’s hair color. (Maybe even more so.)

That’s why it’s important, as infosec professionals, we keep abreast of the latest network security trends for 2018 that give us the best chance of keeping our organization safe and fully-operational.

Here are three network security concepts to consider for this year and beyond:

Network Security Concept #1: Break Down the Wall

There was a time when each IT department in a company would have its own separate “security team.” Those days are going the way of the cassette tape and the 8-track.

These days, as Andrew Froehlich mentions in his article on the Network Computing site, network security should no longer be the realm of an exclusive set of individuals within an IT department. The old model was to have a dedicated “security team” handle all aspects of security for the various parts of an IT system, leaving folks in “Applications” or “Servers” or “Network” to focus solely on their own tasks.

Unfortunately, the network isn’t some place in the corner of the map anymore. It is THE map.

Today, network security must be owned by all members of IT, with a network security manager at the top, ensuring communication and collaboration between all spokes of the wheel. And savvy organizations realize anything the network touches needs to be secured, by all members of the department working together.

Network Security Concept #2: Enter the Cloud (With Eyes Wide Open)

With all the great opportunities cloud-based computing offers – to both enterprise and consumers – also comes the specter of data compromise. (As any number of recent newspaper articles about data breaches confirms.)

That’s why, as Dan Gunderman recounted from this year’s RSA conference in his Cyber Security Hub column, with many companies making the shift toward cloud-computing, it’s important organizations have a game plan for how they will secure all aspects of their operation.,

This means understanding that different cloud-computing ecosystems – public, private, hybrid, multi – have their own set of unique challenges. And though new cloud-computing security tools come out every day – some good, some “meh” — it’s vital organizations understand exactly where their data is traveling and to whom it's traveling, before they open the floodgates.

Network Security Concept #3: Bring in the Heavy (Analytics) Guns

Organizations produce a lot of data. And that's just in the HR department.

On the security side alone, with many organizations using anti-virus software and (DLP) data-loss prevention tools, it can be tricky to sort through reams of data and find actionable intel that helps organizations avoid data breaches before they occur.

That’s why, as Sakshi Gaurav asserts in BotMetric, it’s vital organizations not rely on out-of-the-box analytics to get a snapshot of what’s going on in their IT environment. Instead, they need to invest in advanced analytics tools that help them “process data from multiple sources and flag threats to sensitive data.”

This may come in the form of a customized-security solution or a continuous-monitoring tool, or maybe just a more advanced analytics dashboard that the team can use quickly.

What’s important is a commitment to not just collect data but use it in a way that gives your team the upper-hand when dealing with security unknowns. And that's a network security concept that will never, unlike Kim Kardashian's hair, go out of style.

Which network security concepts do you think will be vital in 2018? Let us know in the comments below.

Topics: network security

Michael Clarke

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