Top Five Ways to Protect Your Network. A MainNerve Whitepaper

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1 A MainNerve Whitepaper

2 Overview The data security challenges within the business world have never been as challenging as they are today. Not only must organizations providers comply with stringent State & Federal regulations concerning privacy and electronic data security, they must also guard against identity theft as well as more complex scenarios of hacking, spoofing, viruses, male ware, and actual theft of critical and sensitive data. In addition, the latest information technology from smartphones and tablets, easily portable laptops, CDs, and USB "flash" drives (also called memory sticks) to , the internet, and shared networks while streamlining work for employee and business owners, and helping with the free flow of information so vital to profitability and efficiency, is also opening new avenues of risk for security breaches. At the global level, a maze of differing regulations and varying levels of IT infrastructure across countries create additional challenges for data security and privacy as well as in cross-border transactions. Fortunately there are solid and proven technologies that any organization can implement to better secure their data, helping them comply with compliance concerns and dealing with the other security issues they face. Paramount among these is: Security Risk Analysis Next Generation Firewall Protection Disk Encryption System Log Monitoring (Security Information Event Management) Ongoing Security Analysis (Vulnerability Scanning) A staggering 43% of companies have experienced a data breach in the past year, an annual study on data breach preparedness finds. These solutions provide for a more robust security program.

3 The Unique Security Challenges in Business We are all in the information business Data breaches are among the most common and costly security failures in organizations of any size. In fact, studies show that companies are attacked an average of 16,856 times a year, and that many of those attacks result in a quantifiable data breach. And with today's data moving freely between corporate networks, mobile devices, and the cloud, data breach statistics show this disturbing trend is rapidly accelerating. Information is key for an organization to be able to function, compete, grow and prosper, yet with the influx of more and more information, the likelihood of a loss of that data begins to increase. Not considering the loss of time and revenue an organization can experience from a data breach, the damage to reputation and loss of trust can be even more detrimental. Consider the following information regarding data breaches. Reputation by far is the most impacted area for businesses and as most will agree, this is the hardest area to regain. Consider the challenge organizations such as Target and Home Depot are facing in trying to regain and rebuild trust with the public. If minimal security measures are in place the ramifications of these incidents can be drastically reduced if not avoided altogether.

4 MainNerve's Enterprise Security Solutions MainNerve provides services which not only assist in providing a more secure and robust security environment; these services also meet the requirements of most compliance concerns such as HIPAA, FERPA, and PCI. Following the recommendations of the National Institute for Standards and Technologies (NIST), our base level Managed Security Services build the foundation for a true Enterprise Security Program. Security Risk Analysis: MainNerve's Security Risk Analysis is the best means to truly identify any and all vulnerabilities, potential exposures and possibilities for a loss of data. Without a complete Security Risk Analysis an organization cannot fully appreciate their current security standing. Assessing an organization s security risk is a key element of an effective enterprise security strategy. Such assessments can mitigate the impact of a security breach or, more to the point, prevent such a breach from happening in the first place. Done well and used correctly, an IT security assessment can also be an invaluable tool for justifying future security spending. The CEO and other business executives may not understand the technical aspects of vulnerabilities, hacking and the security tolls used to keep organizations safe, but they will understand the dollars and cents involved when systems, networks and data are compromised Risk analysis is the first step in an organization s Security Rule compliance efforts. Risk analysis is an ongoing process that should provide the organization with a detailed understanding of the risks to the confidentiality, of critical data One cannot reasonably protect against what us not known. Often times organizations spend time money and effort in an attempt to better protect their network, yet are not fully aware of what issues may exist. Taking this direction can cause for a misuse of time, money and resources and in the end may not provide a true level of protection. A Security Risk Analysis is the only true means to determine which risks exist and how best to mitigate those risks.

5 Next Generation Firewall Advantage: Today, a new generation of users, applications, and security threats are posing risk to the enterprise wireless network. Traditional firewalls are not strong enough to provide complete application visibility and control. Having a "Next Generation Firewall" in place makes sure you are ready to integrate mobile users and cloud computing. Next Generation Firewalls allow organizations to achieve network transparency, reduce vulnerabilities, and conserve network performance. Next Generation Firewalls stop threats and prevent data leakage by providing policybased visibility and control over applications, users and threats, unlike the traditional port-based method. Application identification, application control, and the best threat prevention are all provided with a Next Generation Firewall. By incorporating multiple applications and capabilities, a Next Generation Firewall (NGFW) can address issues such as application identification, application control and threat prevention. Application identification answers the question, what sort of traffic is allowed? It uses multiple identification mechanisms to determine the exact identity of applications crossing the network. As the applications are identified through a multi-factor approach, the policy check determines how to treat the applications and related functions. Accurate traffic classification is the core of any firewall, with the outcome becoming the foundation of the security policy. Application control is as critical as identifying the applications. Nextgeneration firewalls with application control allow you to create application-based firewall policy, to help regain full control over application traffic by managing bandwidth. A robust next generation firewall solution on your enterprise wireless network provides granular application usage control policies such as: allowing or denying, allowing certain application functions and applying traffic shaping, decrypt and inspecting, and allowing for certain users and groups. It increases productivity, prevents data leakage and protects against application-borne malware. As part of an overall strategy for cyber security, firewalls play an important role in establishing the first line of defense against cyber threats. Combined with anti-spyware, anti-virus and antispam software, strong passwords and safe online practices, a firewall adds a layer of protection that increases your chance of staying safe online. In order to prevent threats effectively, any network needs to first reduce the avenues of attack by controlling which applications run on it. Then, a firewall needs to scan allowed application traffic for threats more broadly, while not limiting them to a strict definition of a particular type of threat (e.g., "virus" or "exploit"). MainNerve s (NGFW) firewall option delivers a high performance threat prevention solution.

6 Disk Encryption: Disk Encryption Software enables Full Disk Encryption that is, software you can use to encrypt an entire drive, using 256 bit encryption. For example, you could encrypt the hard drive on a computer, on a CD or a memory stick. This type of Full Disk Encryption offers some unique benefits that might not be immediately apparent. Once Full Disk Encryption is in place, the drive cannot be "slaved" into another PC. Slaving a drive is a way of adding the drive as a secondary or subordinate drive on a separate computer and thereby gaining access to the information on the slave drive. With Full Disk Encryption in place it becomes impossible to use the encrypted drive as a slave drive. Full Disk Encryption is so powerful that it is considered the method of choice to "erase" information on an unused or outdated drive. Because the encrypted information is inaccessible, it is safer to encrypt the undesired drive than to try to destroy or dispose of it. With Full Disk Encryption, your data is effectively protected against theft even if your laptop or computer is stolen; only the hardware is lost. The health records and personal patient data on the stolen device are safe and secure and you and your organization are protected from the cost and headaches of dealing with a major security breach. Full Disk Encryption is especially useful for laptops and other small computing devices that can be physically lost or stolen. The advantage of FDE is that it requires no special attention on the part of the end user after he initially unlocks the computer.

7 System Log Monitoring (SIEM): Security information and event management (SIEM) is an approach to security management that seeks to provide a holistic view of an organization s information technology (IT) security. SIEM combines SIM (security information management) and SEM (security event management) functions into one security management system. Another way to think of a SIEM device is much like a traffic camera which takes a snapshot of data as it moves through the network. As network environments become more complex, it is important for IT to understand and be able to monitor certain security events. There are many positive aspects to adopting SIEM as part of your overall security program of which are: Compliance Concerns PCI, HIPAA, SOX Operational Support Merge system information Threat Detection Assist with zero-day attacks Advanced Persistent Threats Listening to traffic Forensics Post breach assistance Deployed and configured correctly, a strong SIEM can directly and indirectly assist with compliance concerns, bring logs from various devices into one control panel for review, seek and review activity which may be viewed as a threat, look for advances persistent threats as well as provide assistance with post breach reporting. From an IT management perspective, a SIEM is the best solution for understanding the overall sensitivity of the network, while making the process of reviewing that information easier in order to see patters and address potential issues. Overall, SIEM is an all-encompassing solution for log management, security, and compliance. By implementing a comprehensive SIEM solution, you ll be able to expand security and protection across the breadth of your IT landscape.

8 Network Vulnerability Scanning: Vulnerability Scanning is the technique of using one computer to look for weaknesses in the security of another computer - so that you can find and fix the weaknesses in your systems before someone else finds that there is a security weakness and decides to break in. It s a bit like a shop keeper making sure all the doors and windows are closed and locked, the money is in the safe and the alarm is set, before closing up for the evening. Vulnerabilities can exist in any system and the more complex the network, the greater the likelihood for vulnerabilities to exist. Many State and Federal Regulatory concerns such as HIPAA, PCI, and FERPA call for quarterly Internal Vulnerability scanning on a quarterly basis when handling critical data. Understanding what potential liabilities exist, as well as potential security weaknesses is necessary to creating a more secure network environment. The challenge arises when vulnerabilities are seen, yet no action is taken to correct the issues. IT must be prepared and able to address know critical issues and also be able to realize when certain issues require a more knowledgeable security professional. There are two types of vulnerability scans: It is equally imperative that IT admins not fall for the trap of assuming that passing vulnerability scan guarantees security. Internal Addressing Internal IP s and providing a visual of the makeup and landscape of the internal network. External Addressing External or Public facing IP s and providing a view of what someone from the outside looking in would see. From an IT management perspective, an Internal and External Vulnerability scan is crucial to keep current with software patches and updates, before these holes are exploited by hackers or those seeking to do harm to your network. One also must consider the aspect of On Going vulnerability scanning as this will allow for IT to best understand changes to the treat landscape. Conclusion Understanding information and cyber security can prove challenging and frustrating at times, yet with the implementation of a few security measures as mentioned in this paper and assistance of organizations such as MainNerve, you can sleep a little better at night and get back to focusing on business.

9 References

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