It is best to accomplish network security management through a centralized solution which manages firewalls and policies.
While threats to enterprise networks continue to increase, network security teams are overwhelmed with the administration and management of security across the enterprise. Especially for network administrators who manage a large number of complex security tools and firewalls, each with its own policies and practices, a single misconfiguration can result in network vulnerabilities. Gartner predicts that firewall misconfigurations will cause 99% of all firewall breaches through 2023.
In network security management, firewalls and policies are managed to prevent and monitor access to networks. However, managing each firewall and security tool separately creates several problems:
- It is very likely that human error will cause vulnerabilities in the network.
- In security deployments, managing each firewall is repetitive, time-consuming, and can exhaust network administrators.
- An outdated firewall security policy can conflict with another, exposing the network to threats.
- Changes to network configuration are often manual and cannot be automated.
From a single console, a centralized network security management solution can manage configuration and security across a handful to thousands of firewalls.
What are the benefits of a centralized network security solution for your security team?
- Firewalls, users, applications, content, traffic, logs, and threats are all visible in one place. This gives you insight into network threats and what applications your users are accessing across the entire network.
- It simplifies the process of configuring, deploying, and managing security policies. By configuring and deploying security policies to all firewalls, you reduce repetitive tasks.
- Instead of maintaining hundreds of firewalls and security tools, you need only one console – for single-pane-of-glass management.
- A centralized solution can uncover unknown threats hidden in your network in real time, turning your network security team into proactive threat hunters.
- It is easy to propagate changes throughout the organization quickly.
- Saving hundreds of hours results in massive cost savings.
Why is Network Security Management Important?
Cybercriminals often use the network to gain access to an organization. Cybercrime is on the rise, and network security is essential to defending against data breaches, ransomware, and other escalating threats.
Many businesses are challenged by the proliferation of network security monitoring and defense solutions. By operating in silos, these tools create visibility gaps and inconsistencies in IT security policies.
Hence, some organizations invest in centralized network security management, which allows a network security manager to have consistent visibility across the network from one location, eliminate duplicate tasks, and improve efficiency.
Types of Network Security Protection
Network security requires layered defenses, as with other types of cybersecurity. There are several types of security that can protect a network.
Researchers have found that 40 percent of all internet traffic is generated by malicious bots. Firewalls are important components of network defense because they control traffic entering and leaving the network.
Since being introduced in the early 1990s, this technology has evolved from a simple packet-filtering system to next-generation firewalls that protect networks from malware and attacks.
A network segmentation technique divides a network into multiple segments, or subnetworks. It serves a number of purposes, but in terms of security, it allows you to set up and enforce granular policies, as well as restrict and control traffic between segments.
The main reason network segmentation protects the network is that it prevents threats from spreading—by limiting an attack to a single subnet, you minimize the damage.
The purpose of network access control, or NAC, is to control access to the network. Users and devices trying to connect to the network are monitored and only those who are authorized and comply with security policies are permitted access.
Virtual Private Network (VPN)
By encrypting the data that flows through a VPN, a device is connected securely to a network. A VPN extends your secure network to employees working remotely by creating a secure tunnel – instead of directly connecting to the internet, the employee connects through a secure server.
By using secure web gateways and email filters, employees and other users can be protected from malware and other web-borne threats. There are more than 450,000 new malware and potentially unwanted applications registered by the independent AV-TEST Institute every day (95% of those are malware and 5% are PUAs). Malicious attachments and links are the most common way for malicious actors to deploy malware on a network.
Data Loss Prevention
DLP, or data loss prevention, combines technology and processes to prevent employees and other insiders from accidentally or maliciously exposing sensitive information. Various techniques may be used, such as preventing files from being uploaded, encrypting data in motion, and monitoring endpoint activities.
Intrusion Prevention/Intrusion Detection Systems
Both intrusion prevention systems (IPS) and intrusion detection systems (IDS) monitor network traffic and prevent various types of attacks, such as denial-of-service and brute force attacks. The main difference between IDS and IPS is that IDS is passive, which means you have to act on the alerts, while IPS actively controls the system.
Who is Responsible for Protecting the Network?
Despite the fact that specific teams or roles are typically assigned to protect and manage network security, network security is ultimately the responsibility of the entire organization.
Anyone from an IT director to a network security manager or a security analyst may have that direct responsibility, depending on the size of your business. Network users can play an important role in protecting the network against threats by connecting to it.
From application developers to frontline employees across all your teams, you should educate them about the importance of network security and their role in it. You should also consider the risk to your network posed by third parties, such as vendors and contractors, and put policies and controls in place to mitigate those risks.
Problems Network Security Management Address
Today’s network architecture and constantly changing threat environment make it difficult for IT staff to maintain an effective security posture. Supporting an ever-expanding matrix of users, devices, locations, and applications; adhering to compliance; enabling new services; optimizing performance; ensuring access controls and security mechanisms; and troubleshooting issues as they arise are all aspects of security administration. Misconfigurations can make the network vulnerable to sophisticated threats and regulatory noncompliance.
In order to overcome these challenges, network administrators need to implement security policies consistently across their networks. It is possible, however, that the network infrastructure has accumulated thousands of firewall policies over time. The configuration of these rules is often cluttered, duplicated, outdated, or conflicts with new rules, inadvertently affecting network performance and security.
Below is an illustration of a scenario from a typical enterprise, where the IT department is responsible for managing network security:
Through centralized management tools, network security management reduces manual tasks and human errors by simplifying the administration of security policies and workflows.
A network security management system can reduce risk across networks and protect data by leveraging information about threats, vulnerabilities, and their criticality, evaluating potential defense options, and providing intelligence to support decision making.
It simplifies policy administration by unifying common policy tasks, automating policy change workflow, including compliance audits, and managing multiple firewall vendors through a single interface. By simplifying and automating security policy management, IT teams can save time, avoid manual errors, and reduce risk.
How Does Network Security Management Work?
In network security management, data is generated for assets (asset groupings, classifications, firewalls, applications, ports, protocols, VPNs, NATs, security policies, and vendor devices). The information drills down into details for each device and is analyzed. In the form of policy creation, the data is transformed into intelligence that decrypts security transactions into manageable, actionable information. In order to ensure network security, updated policies are distributed to enforcement points (firewalls).
Juniper Networks Implementation
Security Director combines intuitive security visibility with automated policy management to provide comprehensive network security management. In addition to an easy-to-use wizard interface, Security Director offers granular configuration options and predefined profiles for deploying devices and security services. Using a centralized web-based interface across all sites, Security Director allows administrators to manage all phases of the security policy lifecycle for stateful firewall, unified threat management (UTM), intrusion prevention, application firewall (AppFW), VPN, and Network Address Translation (NAT). In addition to providing highly scalable device management, Security Director provides efficient policy management for multiple security devices.
Network Security Managment Advantages
Axiomtek’s network appliance series meets the demand for stable and reliable hardware platform performance as network requirements skyrocket. In addition to multiple Ethernet ports with high networking bandwidth throughput, Axiomtek’s basic security hardware platform includes a powerful core logic processor, built-in security co-processor, and an easy-to-use management interface.
Low power consumption with fanless and noiseless design
In addition to providing security network platforms, Axiomtek also offers network bars and hot spots (open wireless connectivity for ODM customers). Also, this board can be integrated with a panel PC for an electronic money bag that is digitally certified through a network bank. It can be used at supermarkets, bus ticket stations, and many other places.
Advanced network security hardware platforms
Multitasking abilities and the ability to run multiple applications concurrently are necessary for network security equipment. With the newest processors, the network security hardware platforms provide powerful efficiency for multitasking without slowing down. In terms of VPN router and firewall applications, the platform can optimize their processing performance.
Nowadays, the perimeter is disappearing in multi-cloud environments. However, network security remains important, especially since protecting your IT infrastructure has become even more critical. It is likely that centralized network security management will become more common as the network becomes more complex.
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