Surprisingly, networking and security were once upon a time considered different entities; where security solutions like firewalls were applied to the network after their construction. The security team was concerned about the security defense mechanism and threat detection methods based on time and a defined perimeter. On another hand, the networking team was responsible for issues related to latency, reliability, and bandwidth. Eventually, organizations shifting to hybrid networks couldn’t cope with traditional approaches as they sought scalability and automation. As technology at the workplace has evolved, there is more impetus on businesses to ensure network security.
Networking vs. Security
Trends that drive change
Bringing these two functions together is a must due to the fast-growing security threats that have enabled enterprises to implement security measures, and the services that stretch from anti-virus software to intrusion prevention methods. The network latency and increased network traffic due to attached IoT devices is also a concern. It makes sense to not treat networking and security as independent entities.
Additionally, modern networks are now combining the use of physical data centers and cloud storage, which again demand the same level of security. Security approaches like micro-segmentation, policy consideration, etc. ensure the integration of functions into a framework with the holistic contribution of the providers.
Another reason to blur the lines between these two functions is the efforts that an enterprise makes to stay ahead of the competition. Businesses are constantly moving to new geographical markets and exploring new verticals. The process of expansion involves cost-effective reconfiguration and updated network security connections across all locations. It becomes viable to a business integrated with a variety of approaches to have a well-structured and defined network security.
1. Segmenting network security
When an enterprise microsegment its network down to a single server, the top-most switch in the rack becomes a security policy enforcement point. Micro-segmenting of the network is creating more opportunities for businesses, because when the incident happens, they can either shut down the port, encrypt the data, or shift the traffic to a different virtual LAN. This approach should be open and inclusive before it is applied for the long-term.
2. Automating the network security
Most networks are a mix of different vendors’ equipment making them look homogenous. The equipment interacts based on cohesive standards because network intelligence can predict threats. The intelligence can feed this information into a security policy creation function. By automating the security policy creation to a centralized point, network devices can be framed as security policy enforcers getting through the point of connection.
3. Merging network with security
Among the various benefits, and amalgamating network with security helps increase visibility and to reduce operational overhead. The improved visibility also reduces resolution and troubleshooting times. By framing and implementing security policy throughout the organization, meaningful intelligence can be developed with fewer errors. Merging networks with security also facilities migration to cloud services. The approach of merging the network and security will contribute to complying with PCI, GDPR and other regulations. It avoids large-scale upgrades by protecting current investments.
The rewards could also be in the form of lowered costs, reduced risk, and operational efficiencies.
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