In the beginning, there was LAN (local area network) and WAN (wide area network). LANs were easy to maintain and almost completely security-safe. WANs were viewed as a necessary vulnerability. On the seventh day, hackers were created and the world hasn’t been the same since.
Cybersecurity is critical to everyone, including Mom & Pop’s shoe store on the corner. As we all now know, any transparency in your security system is a big problem.
“Hybrid networks” use more than one technology; an example would be a network that has wi-fi and Ethernet or perhaps wi-fi, Ethernet, and 4G wireless connectivity. Traffic from different technologies is then routed into the same network.
Technology writer David Weedmark says the main advantages of a hybrid network are cost-savings and accessibility. “Few businesses have the budget to replace an entire network all at once,” notes Weedmark. “Hybrids allow a business to bring in new networking technologies while phasing-out old technologies over the course of time.”
The main disadvantage? Security, of course. And again, cost. Businesses with hybrid networks need IT professionals who are experts in each technology.
Balancing Remote Employees with Onsite IT
Onsite security can only do so much. Your company needs to train mobile employees to protect data and devices. Common safeguards include:
- Ask IT if you need help encrypting data on your device.
- Backup data.
- Disable cookies and pop-ups.
- Don’t lend your devices to others.
- Enable time-out/passcode protections.
- Implement remote-wipe; if your device is stolen you can erase all data remotely.
- Register serial numbers.
- Set up tracking.
- Use only IT-approved apps.
The first step to securing sensitive data is to admit it will be shared, says Forbes. Anything in your company – on the cloud or onsite – that is confidential, proprietary, or government-regulated is “sensitive data.” In one 2017 survey, 78% of endusers said they knew the risks involved in clicking unknown email links, but they clicked anyway.
“Even though two-thirds of employees are trained on cybersecurity, 18% don’t recognize what they’re doing is unsafe,” says Forbes. Other employees know what they’re doing is unsafe but do it anyway to expedite jobs. During performance reviews, you rate employees’ abilities to complete assigned tasks, not their security compliance, right?
The only way to protect sensitive data is to use technology that protects your data and frees your employees to do their jobs. And a firewall virtual private network (VPN) is no longer enough to prevent outsiders from accessing your data. Integrated and automated solutions are going to be key so that technology can provide the necessary intelligence without leaving it to the individual end user.
Your company is like none other; your architecture and security now needs customized solutions to promote and meet your business outcomes. Your first step is to engage knowledgeable professionals to review and assess your current architecture and security practices.
Penetration testing and vulnerability assessments effectively measure your security perimeter and both are vital in today’s landscape. Atrion can perform tests at a time that is convenient for you, and we can build a custom program targeting your specific security needs. Knowledge truly is power, so contact your Atrion professionals to learn more.