Network Security on a Limited Budget: The Best Cost-Saving Strategies
Cyber threats are real and you are well aware of them. Every now and again, security breaches can cause system corruptions or expose your social media accounts as being hacked. This is a concern and you need to take steps to mitigate the damage. First, let’s take a look at network security.
What is Network Security?
Network securityconsists of thepolicies, processes,and practices adopted to prevent, detect and monitorunauthorizedaccess,misuse, modification, or denial of acomputer networkand network-accessible resources.
Network security, in other words, means protecting your data from outside threats. How can you do this? You can do this by granting authorization to access network data, creating strict login and password protocols, and installing antivirus software.
Why is Network Security important
It is crucial to protect your sensitive and personal information from security breaches, as almost all of it is now online. Data breaches could include malware, viruses in your computer, or phishing of bank accounts.
Do you remember the 2017 Yahoo security breach? It holds the record for the biggest data breach, with 3 Billion compromised accounts (Statista). In 2019, 540,000,000 Facebook user records were exposed to the Amazon cloud server (CBS).
These statistics will show you the impact of these breaches.
A mega breach of 50,000,000 records would cost $392 million on average, an increase of almost 12% over 2018 (IBM).
Every 39 seconds, a cyberattack takes place (University of Maryland).
23% of data breaches were caused by human error (IBM).
According to the Herjavec Group, a ransomware attack will affect a business every 11 seconds by 2021.
Healthcare is the most costly industry to suffer data breaches at $7.13 Million (IBM).
Your company may be interested in increasing data privacy and protection. With budget constraints and reduced cash flow, is it possible to achieve optimal network security? Cyberattacks can put your data at risk and also cause you to lose clients or customers.
Even though it is essential, network security measures can be costly. These are some of the major expenses:
Firewall system – Firewalls can either be software- or hardware-based. They should include threat prevention and security management.
Detection sensors – These software detect threats and neutralize them before the system is compromised. They can be costly depending on their sophistication.
Hiring skilled hackers – Hackers are an integral component of today’s security system. However, it is important to invest in their training to keep up with the latest hacking attacks.
Provision for new vulnerabilities – Every year there are new vulnerabilities, hacks, and viruses. Your security system must be updated regularly to avoid data breaches.
Many companies offer a package of these security systems. However, they are not always justified by the high cost of increased security.
What’s the solution?
There are many ways to implement network security that will protect your company while also being cost-effective. Here are some:
Do an IT Audit
It is always better to conduct an IT audit before you make any decisions about your network security or if you have questions about your security measures.
An audit can help you assess security threats by analysing the entire network, detecting loopholes and recommending fixes. The audit will help you decide how to protect your company from unwanted breaches. You can find companies that offer IT auditing services at a reasonable rate.
Physical SecurityThere are simple ways to protect your network’s physical security. It is not just about malware and firewalls. Your first line of defense is physical security. These can be used to install biometric locks, remove unused ethernet ports or keep a log of who is entering and leaving the premises.
Although these inclusions can seem expensive initially, they are practical and only cost a fraction of the damage you would suffer in the event of security breaches. Remote work during COVID-19 led to an increase in data breach costs in the United States of $137,000 (IBM). The statistics speak for themselves.
Invest in low-cost security software. There are many options available today and many of them come at no cost. You might consider investing in ESET, Cisco Umbrella and Comodo. Make sure to keep them updated.
Low-cost network security tools are available. Here are some options:
Microsoft Enhanced Mitigation Toolkit (EMET).
Rapid7 Tools Free
Nmap + Zenmap
Firewalls should be updated