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My InfoTech Journal: Decoding the Networking Enigma: OSI vs. TCP/IP Reference Models

My InfoTech Journal: Decoding the Networking Enigma: OSI vs. TCP/IP Reference Models The OSI (Open Systems Interconnection) Reference Model and the TCP/IP (Transmission Control Protocol/Internet Protocol) Reference Model: The OSI Reference Model and the TCP/IP Reference Model are both conceptual frameworks used to understand and standardize how different networking protocols and technologies interact. Here are some areas of comparison: 1. Number of Layers: OSI Model : It consists of seven layers: Physical, Data Link, Network, Transport, Session, Presentation, and  TCP/IP Model : It has four layers: Network Interface, Internet, Transport, and Application. 2. L ayer Functionality: OSI Model : Tends to be more comprehensive and abstract, defining each layer's functions independently. TCP/IP Model : Reflects the actual implementation of the Internet and focuses on how protocols are used in practice. 3. Adoption / Use: OSI Model : Less commonly used in practice, but it is still valuab

Network Security: How to Secure Your Network

My InfoTech Journal:

Network Security 




To set the context of this domain, I have here several definitions from different service providers.


Network Security refers to the practices of protecting computer network from intruders, including both wired and wireless connections. - US CISA


Network Security is any activity designed to protect the usability and integrity of your network and data. It includes both hardware and software technologies. Effective network security manages access to the network. It targets a variety of threats and stops them from entering or spreading on your network. - Cisco


Network Security combines multiple layers of defenses at the edge and in the network. Each network security layer implements policies and controls. Authorized users gain access to network resources, but malicious actors are blocked from carrying out exploits and threats. - Cisco


Network Security are measures taken to protect a communications pathway from unauthorized access to, and accidental or willful interference of, regular operations. - Gartner


Network Security must consider a holistic approach to secure all the attack vectors in your network. You have to perform a risk assessment on your network and drive a security program to ensure that all identified risks have been resolved.


 




How to Secure Your Network


Network Security covers a wide range of solutions. All of which must work in an ecology complementing each other, with the same objective that is to ensure the integrity of your network and data. Network Security is an evolving domain that advances dramatically as the threat landscape advances. 

Here are some of the Network Security solutions that you must consider to protect your network.



Firewalls

Firewalls are critical components especially when a local area network is connected to the internet. A Firewall controls the access to the network as well as monitor the flow of traffic. A Firewall is able to screen and keep out unwanted network traffic and also prevent intrusion to your private  network.


Firewalls put up a barrier between your trusted internal network and untrusted outside networks, such as the Internet. They use a set of defined rules to allow or block traffic. A firewall can be hardware, software, or both. Cisco offers unified threat management (UTM) devices and threat-focused next-generation firewalls. 2



eMail Security

eMail is another area that is a favourite vector of attack on users. As part of your Network Security and Risk Management strategy, you have to ensure that you protect your email system against attacks, compromise, malware infestation, phishing and spoofing.


eMail Gateways are the number one threat vector for a security breach. Attackers use personal information and social engineering tactics to build sophisticated phishing campaigns to deceive recipients and send them to sites serving up malware. An email security application blocks incoming attacks and controls outbound messages to prevent the loss of sensitive data. 2



Anti-Virus and Anti-Malware Software

Anti-Virus and Anti-Malware Softwares are deployed as countermeasures for computer virus and malwares.


"Malware," short for "malicious software," includes viruses, worms, Trojans, ransomware, and spyware. Sometimes malware will infect a network but lie dormant for days or even weeks. The best antimalware programs not only scan for malware upon entry, but also continuously track files afterward to find anomalies, remove malware, and fix damage. 2



Network Segmentation

Network Segmentation is an architectural design to enhance network security. The concept behind this design is to divide the network into multiple segments or small networks. This allows your Network Team to implement granular policies to control and secure the flow of traffics between these smaller networks. 


Network Segmentation allows organisations to improve technical support and more efficient monitoring, improve on network performance, easier troubleshooting of issues based on a the segmented smaller networks,  and most importantly, this design improves on your network security. 


Software-defined segmentation puts network traffic into different classifications and makes enforcing security policies easier. Ideally, the classifications are based on endpoint identity, not mere IP addresses. You can assign access rights based on role, location, and more so that the right level of access is given to the right people and suspicious devices are contained and remediated2



Access Control 

Access Control is a network security control that is implemented to ensure that access to resources are secured and only allowed to authorized personnel.


Not every user should have access to your network. To keep out potential attackers, you need to recognize each user and each device. Then you can enforce your security policies. You can block noncompliant endpoint devices or give them only limited access. This process is network access control (NAC). 2



Application Security

Application Security is a control to help ensure that applications are secured to prevent security vulnerabilities from being exploited.


Any software you use to run your business needs to be protected, whether your IT staff builds it or whether you buy it. Unfortunately, any application may contain holes, or vulnerabilities, that attackers can use to infiltrate your network. Application security encompasses the hardware, software, and processes you use to close those holes2



Behavioural Analytics

Behavioural Analytics refers to security controls that analyze the normal conduct of Users. Behavioural Analytics tools are able to determine patterns that are out of the ordinary and suspicious or that are deviations from the normal user behaviour. 


To detect abnormal network behavior, you must know what normal behavior looks like. Behavioral analytics tools automatically discern activities that deviate from the norm. Your security team can then better identify indicators of compromise that pose a potential problem and quickly remediate threats. 2



Data Loss Prevention (DLP)

Data Loss Prevention (DLP) is a security control that are composed of sets of tools and processes that ensures your sensitive data are kept secured, not lost, not misused, and accessed only by authorized users on a need to know basis.


Organizations must make sure that their staff does not send sensitive information outside the network. Data loss prevention, or DLP, technologies can stop people from uploading, forwarding, or even printing critical information in an unsafe manner. 2



Intrusion Prevention System (IPS)

Intrusion Prevention System (IPS) are security tools that detects security threats and prevents your network from these threats. The IPS can trigger alerts when threats are detected and initiates preventative actions.


An intrusion prevention system (IPS) scans network traffic to actively block attacks. Cisco Next-Generation IPS (NGIPS) appliances do this by correlating huge amounts of global threat intelligence to not only block malicious activity but also track the progression of suspect files and malware across the network to prevent the spread of outbreaks and reinfection2



Mobile Device Security

Mobile Device Security refers to security controls that are designed to protect information or data stored and processed on mobile devices like laptops, mobile phones or smartphones, tablets, and other portable devices.


Cybercriminals are increasingly targeting mobile devices and apps. Within the next 3 years, 90 percent of IT organizations may support corporate applications on personal mobile devices. Of course, you need to control which devices can access your network. You will also need to configure their connections to keep network traffic private2



Security Information and Event Management (SIEM)

Security Information and Event Management (SIEM) is a security control that refers to security solutions that are able to provide real-time analysis of security alerts generated by network devices or applications. SIEM collects alerts from your servers, network devices, domain controllers and other systems or services in your IT Infrastructure, then performs analysis to detect threats.


SIEM products pull together the information that your security staff needs to identify and respond to threats. These products come in various forms, including physical and virtual appliances and server software. 2



Virtual Private Network (VPN) 

Virtual Private Network (VPN) is a security control that helps protect your remote connection by encrypting the session to your private network.


A virtual private network encrypts the connection from an endpoint to a network, often over the Internet. Typically, a remote-access VPN uses IPsec or Secure Sockets Layer to authenticate the communication between device and network2



Web Security 

We’ve Security refers to security controls that help protect your IT infrastructure from CyberCriminal threats that uses web exploits. 


A web security solution will control your staff’s web use, block web-based threats, and deny access to malicious websites. It will protect your web gateway on site or in the cloud. "Web security" also refers to the steps you take to protect your own website2



Wireless Security

Wireless Security refers to security controls that you implement on your wireless devices like your access points.


Wireless networks are not as secure as wired ones. Without stringent security measures, installing a wireless LAN can be like putting Ethernet ports everywhere, including the parking lot. To prevent an exploit from taking hold, you need products specifically designed to protect a wireless network2




End Notes


Disclaimer 

This article is a result of my personal research and is not a substitute for legal advise. 

Please consult your Legal Team, Ethics & Compliance, or Regulatory Team for the interpretation of  specific CyberSecurity requirements.






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  1. I'm drawn in by the introduction of this article. It is a truly a profitable article for us. Continue to post, Thank you.Network Security Solutions for Enterprise

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