According to several studies, the damages that can cause due to cybercrime will amount to a total world cost of $6 trillion by 2021, which will outpace the annual cost of damages, caused due to natural disasters. From this, you can imagine the importance of network security company to prevent these disastrous damages. Currently, the average cost of a cyberattack is $1.67 million, which includes productivity and operational loss, and undesirable customers experience, which are the prime drawbacks of the damages that cause after an attack.
The data is the new oil in this digitalised economy that drives your business and helps you progress. Data carries vital information and is a big support system in keeping your organisation stays healthy. Similarly, the network is a pipeline that enables the data to function and move around with an aim to accomplish the task in hands. However, cyberattacks and threats are obstacles, that break into the network to sneak into the data, with an ill-motive of disturbing the functioning of your business.
So, with the purpose of protecting the network, systems, and data, and save them from all possible threats and data loss of millions of dollars, you will only need to take some precautions that effective and robust network security can provide.
In this blog, we will talk about 14 network security tools that can help you in protecting your network from cybercriminals. However, it is crucial to understand what is network security and what is essential to protect it?
What Is Network Security?
Network security is a term used for security tools, technique, and policies that are programmed to monitor prevent and respond to illegal intrusion on your network, and at the same time protecting the digital properties that also include network traffic. Both hardware and software technologies are part of network security, and they intend to respond to the wide array of possible threats, that target your network.
In simple words, network security is a defence mechanism used to protect your network and sensitive data from criminal minds with ill intentions. We often get to hear about the cyber scams, bank frauds, data thefts, hacking of government websites, and many similar kinds of crimes that take place over cyberspace, the impact of which is massive and damaging to people/business and many times to the national security. The reason is, the obstacles with malicious intentions try to break in, and network security tools and techniques work relentlessly to keep them away. Thus, to execute the national security strategy, the focus is on the three key areas that are – protection, detection, and response.
While protection involves tools and policies that are made to prevent network security intrusion, detection refers to detect network traffic and identify the problems with the use of available resources before they can do any damage to the system or network, and finally, respond when the threats are identified and resolve them at the earliest.
What is the Current Situation?
It is very unfortunate, that most organisation are not aware of the policies, tools, and techniques to protect themselves from cyber threats properly. Several observations have found that three out of four companies in the US and Europe, employ substandard level cybersecurity strategy. Knowing the rising cyberthreats and risks associated with it, one can easily understand, when breaches happen in networks, and malicious intents approach the system, then the risk is not just limited to the data, but the damage could have a permanently devastating effect.
What are the Advantages of Network Security?
The purpose of network security tools and techniques are not only to help enterprises protect their sensitive data but also, their overall performance, market reputation and alongside help them survive and succeed in their businesses. Uninterrupted business operations with an intact reputation is the two main advantages of effective network security. It is a well-known fact that companies that are victims of cyberattacks, often find themselves in a terrible situation and end up with failures and losses, leading to a bad reputation in the market that further affects their business negatively.
Likewise, networks also have significant roles to play in the operational activities of the companies. When a company’s networks are under cyberattacks, then the entire system comes to a standstill, obstructing the company’s operational activities or even in conducting the business smoothly. The destructive effect of the cyberattack can be immensely damaging to the reputation of your business.
What is the Size of Impact on Business?
It has been noticed that knowing the constantly rising fear of personal data theft and other breaches that leads to identity theft customers have become sceptical when they are requested to share data with companies for business purposes. Most of the time, when a company suffers a cyberattack, the customers prefer to pull out and opt for more secure options. In any case, why take a risk when safer alternatives are available in the market?
The loss of valuable data, infrastructural impairments, a considerable amount of disruption in customer services, damage to reputation in the industry and market that may continue for a long period after the resolution of the damages, it becomes difficult to identify the risks when it comes to network security. It is found many companies have to shut down after the reputational loss as most of the businesses are unable to return to their previous operational state. On the contrary, the companies that bank on the reliable network security hardware and software tools and techniques, combined with the right policies and security measures can easily ensure, while cyberattack does happen, the impact is negligible.
Network Security Tools and Techniques
In the present situation, there is every the possibility that your network might face threats of all kinds and thus should be equipped to protect, identify, and respond to the entire line of attacks. However, the fact is, the biggest threats are not those that attack your network casually for some personal revenge, or just to scare you or due to professional insecurity, but the attacks that are sponsored with well-planned and specific reasons with long-term ill-intents. Therefore, it is important that you address your network security strategy with the various possibilities these attackers might apply.
Below we are discussing various cybersecurity tools and techniques for your various network security purpose:
1. Access Control
If the hackers or attackers cannot breach into the network, then the amount of damage caused will be minimal. However, when you stop unauthorised access to people, then you must be aware that even those with authorised access can be a potential threat to your network. This is when access control helps you in increasing your network protection by restricting the access of users and resources to only limited parts of the network that is directly linked to every authorised user’s responsibilities.
2. Anti-malware Software
Viruses, worms, trojans, spyware, keyloggers, etc. – all these are a type of malware that are programmed to attack networks and then systems to spread through independent computer/devices and infect networks. Anti-malware software is a type of network security software programmed to recognise malicious programs and act as deterrents to prevent them from spreading. Anti-malware and antivirus software is used to protect the systems and network from threats and may also help minimise the damage to the network and fix malware infections.
3. Anomaly Detection
It is not easy to identify the anomalies in your network, unless you are aware of the basics of how the network functions. Network anomaly detection engines (ADE) is used to analyse your network to alert you whenever breaches or attacks take place so that you can respond quickly to the threats.
4. Application Security
Many times, attackers find application to be vulnerable, so they intend to exploit them. However, by establishing application security parameters, you can provide relevant security to your network.
5. Data Loss Prevention (DLP)
It has been observed all the time that human elements are the weakest link in network security. DLP technologies and policies help protect staff and other users from exploiting and probably compromising sensitive data or even giving access to sensitive data to an external network.
6. Email security
Email security aims at identifying human-related security weaknesses that are done via phishing strategies. Phishing activities are complex and convincing, as email recipients are convinced by the attackers to share their personal and sensitive information through their desktop, laptop, or mobile device. The intention is to make them download malware unknowingly in the networks on their targets. Using email security, you can easily identify malicious emails and can block the threats, and stop sharing sensitive data.
7. Endpoint Security
In the last couple of years, more and more businesses are converting to ‘bring you own device’ (BYOD) alternatives, means professionals today carry their own devices (or asked to carry) that is laptops and smartphone/tablets to their workplaces to perform their official work. This is when it becomes difficult to distinguish between and personal and business/professional devices. Unfortunately, for this reason, many times personal devices become targets when users use them to access the business network. Endpoint security helps in safeguarding through threat prevention layers between the business network and remote devices.
Firewalls are like barriers that are used to protect the borders between the network and the systems, inside the organisations, and are used to stop unauthorised traffic from entering the network and systems of an organisation and allows only the authorised traffic into the networks/systems.
9. Intrusion Detection
Intrusion detection or intrusion prevention systems can scan and detect network traffic/packets constantly so that different types of threats and intrusions can be detected and a quick response can be given. Whatever attacks and intrusions take place, the systems keep a record of all of them, so that threats can be easily identified.
10. Network Segmentation
There are various types of network traffic, and every traffic is linked with a different security risk. Using network segmentation, you can grant the right access to the right traffic and at the same time stop traffic from distrustful sources.
11. Security Information and Event Management (SIEM)
When you have to pull the right information from different tools at the same time in bulk size and from different resources, then the task becomes excessively difficult, especially when there is a time constraint. Then Security Information and Event Management (SIEM) tools and software act quickly and respond with the data you need.
12. Virtual Private Network (VPN)
Virtual Private Network (VPN) tools are used to validate communication between secure networks and remote endpoint devices. For validation or authentication, secure socket layer (SSL) or IPsec are used by remote-access VPNs usually by creating an encrypted line to block threats from snooping or spying or hacking.
13. Web Security
Web security includes everything from hardware, software, tools, policies, applications, and more to ensure safe and secure web use when connected to the internal network. Web-based threats can be kept away from accessing the network by stopping them from using browsers.
14. Wireless Security
Wireless networks are not as secure as traditional networks. Therefore, stringent security measures are necessary to protect the network from outside threats and unauthorised access.
All the above tools and techniques if used with the right guidance and knowledge can protect your network from all unauthorised intrusions. It is high time, you without giving a second thought, hire a professional cyber and network security company or expert who can help you identify the right cybersecurity solution for your business.