A Guide to Secure Network Infrastructure and Cybersecurity Best Practices
Secure Network Architecture: Designing a network with security in mind, such as using network segmentation, DMZs (demilitarized zones), and access controls, can help isolate and protect critical assets.
Network Segmentation: Where applicable, contemplating network segmentation, which carves out isolated enclaves for critical systems within the broader network, curtails the potential ramifications of a breach.
Firewalls: Firewalls are hardware or software devices that control incoming and outgoing network traffic based on an organization’s previously established security policies. They serve as a barrier between a trusted internal network and untrusted external networks (e.g., the internet) to prevent unauthorized access and protect against cyber threats.
Network Detection and Response (NDR): NDR solutions monitor network activity for suspicious or malicious behaviour based on behavior analysis and AI, promptly identifying and reacting to security incidents as they occur.
Security Information and Event Management (SIEM): SIEM platforms collect, analyze, and correlate data from various network and security devices to detect and respond to security incidents.
Vulnerability Management: This involves regularly scanning the network for vulnerabilities and weaknesses, prioritizing them based on risk, and applying patches and corrective measures to resolve them.
Endpoint Security: Endpoint security solutions safeguard individual devices (e.g., laptops, smartphones) from malware, unauthorized access, and data breaches.
Incident Response: Involves a coordinated set of actions to identify, manage, and recover from incidents while minimizing damage and ensuring business continuity.
Security Policies and Procedures: Well-defined security policies, procedures, and guidelines are crucial for establishing expectations, outlining security practices, and ensuring compliance within the organization.
Network Access Control (NAC): NAC solutions enforce security policies by controlling access to the network based on device compliance, user authentication, and endpoint security checks.
Vulnerability Scanning and Penetration Testing: Conduct regular vulnerability assessments and penetration tests to identify and address network weaknesses before malicious actors exploit them.
Data Protection & Encryption: Safeguarding important data by encrypting it, both during transit and at rest, protect it against unauthorized intrusions.
Virtual Private Networks (VPNs): VPNs establish secure, encrypted connections over public networks, allowing remote users or branch offices to securely access the corporate network.
Strong Authentication: Enforcing strong password policies, advocating the use of multi-factor authentication (MFA) where feasible, and instituting a culture of periodic password changes is recommended.
Regular Updates: It is imperative to maintain all security devices and software in an updated state. Security patches are designed to address the vulnerabilities that may otherwise remain concealed.
Security Awareness Training: The weakest link in any organization’s cybersecurity chain is often human error. A cyber aware workforce directly translates to reduced cyber risk. Educating employees and users about security best practices and the importance of adhering to security policies is a critical part of any security infrastructure.
Cloud Security Controls: Implementing cloud-specific security controls and monitoring is vital to ensure the security of cloud-hosted data and applications.
Regular Backups: Regularly backing up data and subjecting these backups to rigorous testing to ascertain their efficacy in times of need is a prudent measure.