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How is network security different from infrastructure security?

Network security

IT groups must consider different levels of security. For example, the similarities and differences between cyber security and network security are closely related. Information security, network security, cybersecurity: the industry has become inundated with terms to describe how companies protect their data.

In this article, we will unravel a confusion that reigns in cybersecurity. Which is the difference between network security and infrastructure security. Let us see:

  1. How can we define cybersecurity and what does it represent?
  2. What are the basics of cybersecurity and why are they essential?
  3. What is network infrastructure about?
  4. Why is it important to secure servers, devices and applications?
  5. How to ensure the best data transfer speed?
  6. Why is it important to take ports and firewalls into account for good infrastructure security?
  7. What is the most characteristic difference between network security and infrastructure security?

1. How can we define cybersecurity and what does it represent?

Network security

Cybersecurity, a subset of information security. It is the practice of defending  your organization’s cloud system, network security, computers and data from unauthorized access, attack or digital damage. Through the application of various defense processes, and practices. With countless sophisticated threat actors attacking all types of organizations. Your company need protection.

Technically speaking, cybersecurity considers the security of the entire cyber continuum. It is concerned with protecting data within a company’s networked computing space. In practice, this includes securing where data is stored, where it is handled, and where it is transported (network security).

In practical terms, cybersecurity can be thought of as the security of the entire computing space. From the information asset to the information user, including all components in between. The user need not be a human, as a result, cybersecurity also covers communications between data processing systems.

Having said that, when IT professionals speak in cybersecurity terms, they typically worry more about the security of data that gets stored and not transmitted. Simply put, cybersecurity is about protecting data both at rest and in motion.

1.1 Which technologies are the most common in cybersecurity?

Social Engineering. When cyber threat attackers target your organization, they are not only investigating your business, but also your employees. They know that non-security employees do not understand cyber threats, so they launch cyber-attacks that exploit human vulnerabilities. Using the social engineering process, threat actors manipulate individuals into giving them control over sensitive information.

During these times, it is imperative that your employees understand cybersecurity risks so they are less likely to fall victim to sophisticated scams or phishing attacks. Providing your employees with the necessary continuing security training is not difficult or costly (both technically and in terms of time).

Continuing education is not just “lip service” through sporadic and ineffective engagement, but goes a long way in strengthening an organization’s human firewall and effectively mitigating the results of targeted cyber-attacks. Employees at home or in the office. Among the most common current social engineering hacks are:

  • Phishing/Vishing/Smishing
  • MitM (Man-in-the-Middle) phishing kits

1.2 What is Phishing/Vishing/Smishing and how to protect yourself?

Phishing. This is probably the method most commonly used by cybercriminals. It consists of sending fraudulent e-mails that direct customers to fake web pages that appear to be from the bank. The first way to prevent ‘phishing’ is based on common sense and is not to provide confidential information. If you are already a customer of the bank, the financial entity already handles this data securely.

Vishing. The term derives from the union of two words: ‘voice’ and ‘phishing’ and refers to the type of threat that combines a fraudulent phone call with information previously obtained from the Internet. The cybercriminal has to have stolen confidential information through a fraudulent email or website (‘phishing’), but needs the SMS key to perform and validate an operation.

Smishing. Just as phone calls are a way to try to deceive customers, so are text messages or messages via WhatsApp and hence the modality known as ‘smishing’ is derived.The solution to ‘smishing’ is to ignore messages requesting to make a call, an operation, or provide data.

As well as phishing, vishing and smishing, there are also other threats that not only attack digital channels, but can also occur at the same time of making transactions at ATMs or making a purchase, for example.

2. What are the basics of cybersecurity and why are they essential?

Security tip #1: Use a password manager. To successfully protect all aspects of your digital life, you need a strong, unique password for each account associated with your identity. Since you probably have more than 50 accounts, it is unlikely you will remember that many strong passwords. So you need a password manager.

Security tip #2: Religiously enforce two-factor authentication. Two-factor authentication means that you require two factors to authenticate your identity. One factor is the traditional username and password combination. The other factor is usually a one-time PIN that is sent to the phone, although there are other ways to implement a second factor for certain applications.

Security essential #3: Be digitally vigilant. Most of us are pretty vigilant in the “physical world.” Our adrenaline spikes a bit if we notice someone following us in a poorly lit parking lot or feel a contact against us while waiting in line somewhere.

Unfortunately, that situational awareness often disappears when we are online. For some reason, we are too focused on our current task to pay attention to the small signs that something may be wrong. Perhaps it is because we deny the dangers of cybercrime. Maybe it is because we are so impatient when we are online and we just want to make everything work.

3. What is network infrastructure about?

A network infrastructure consists of all the hardware in a network, such as computers, printers, servers, switches, routers, cables and more. It also includes software applications and services such as operating systems, network security and firewalls. A network infrastructure provides the basis for all communications and connections in a company.

A company’s network infrastructure must stay error-free in order for users, devices and applications to communicate with each other and business operations to continue as usual. Enterprises must monitor their network infrastructure to ensure that their processes run reliably, securely and have good network security.

As businesses grow, so do their number of devices and applications, resulting in an increasingly complex network infrastructure. For those companies that are in the process of rapid growth, network infrastructure monitoring becomes a vital part of their day-to-day operations.

4. Why is it important to secure servers, devices and applications?

Companies must monitor every aspect of their hardware to ensure that the devices that inhabit their networks operate flawlessly. If a device malfunctions at an inopportune time, there can result in serious consequences for the company. Good network security becomes important.

Productivity losses can quickly become costly and even lead to contractual penalties, such as when confidential data gets lost due to a system crash or malfunction. For each server, you need to closely and continuously monitor its server availability, accessibility and ability to keep the network stable and optimize its performance.

By monitoring their servers, system administrators can ensure that employees have access to all relevant data. In this way they determine whether existing capacities still suffice. Mail servers, in particular, require network security and special attention.

As soon as a mail server shows the first signs of malfunctioning, the helpdesk team will start receiving complaints in droves. Server and database crashes can only be avoided by keeping a constant eye on the performance of a system.

5. How to ensure the best data transfer speed?

Network security

Companies must carefully monitor their cables, switches, routers and other vulnerable devices to ensure that data flows reliably and unobstructed through their network. For example, just one overloaded switch will slow down communication and operational processes throughout the enterprise.

Therefore, switch traffic must remain continuously monitored. Monitoring allows companies to quickly identify overloaded switches and intervene to prevent a blockage, as well as to better control network security. Switches is also a notorious bottleneck. Being responsible for device connectivity and synchronization, a faulty switch can cause a network-wide collapse.

Apart from speed, an encrypted connection is a must for networks that transfer important business data. Connection stability, security and data protection become paramount. To meet these requirements, companies often use virtual private networks (VPNs), which must also remain continuously monitored to improve network security and avoid connection problems and network irregularities.

5.1 How does a VPN work?

In order to connect to the internet, either through your cell phone, PC, television and other devices, generally, a communication takes place between the router or modem that connects your workspace or your home with the internet provider, either wired or wirelessly. The process changes depending on the device through which you want to connect, but the essence is the same: your device connects to another device that provides the internet connection.

All the devices you connect to the same router that provides you with the Internet receive a local IP address, given to them by the company that provides the service, which is not visible from the Internet. The local network refers to all the devices connected to the same router, so you can share files and printers without having to go through the Internet.

What a VPN connection allows is to create a local network without the members being physically in the same space, but through the Internet. Hence the name virtual private network. This means that, by means of a VPN, you obtain all the advantages of the local network with greater flexibility.

Since the connection, being through the internet, can go from one end of the world to another and this will not interfere with the security of the connection.  A correct implementation of this technology will allow and ensure the confidentiality and integrity of all data and information transmitted over the network.

6. Why is it important to take ports and firewalls into account for good infrastructure security?

Ports can also pose a risk in terms of secure data transfer. Among other things, an open port can allow Trojans to infiltrate the system, blocking the most susceptible areas of the company or leading to the theft of confidential data. Therefore, all ports must remain under close supervision.

Wide area networks (WANs) become prone to errors due to their architecture, which can span several countries or even continents. However, key applications containing business-critical data often run over the WAN, and employees must get access to it in order to work efficiently.

WAN monitoring helps companies improve network security and prevent outages and malfunctions before they occur. Troubleshooting costs the company valuable time, money and resources, especially when it comes to avoidable errors.

Firewalls also play a vital role in network security. As protectors of sensitive processes and data, they must undergo regular checks to ensure that they are stable and up to date. Firewall monitoring enables companies to identify traffic-related security risks and keep them to a minimum.

7. What is the most characteristic difference between network security and infrastructure security?

The main difference between infrastructure security and network security lies primarily in the implementation of security planning. An infrastructure security plan without a network security plan remains incomplete. However, a network security plan can usually stand alone.

If we look at it another way, network security represents a subset of infrastructure cybersecurity. Regardless of how security needs get assessed, planning has to go all the way down to the lowest level. At each level, procedures and tools must ensure that access to sensitive information needs to be controlled and mitigate any breaches that could lead to the disclosure of that information.

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