BlogWissenwertesThe importance of IT security

The importance of IT security

Ein Beitrag von Helder Sousa

Introduction

In today’s digital landscape, IT security is a paramount concern for businesses. Therefore, in the following article, we will delve into key aspects and strategies to address these challenges effectively.

One of the most complex challenges that companies will undoubtedly have to address in the years to come is IT security. Digitalization stands out as a primary driver for companies to innovate, enhance efficiency, and foster stronger relationships with customers and among employees. However, surge in digitalization simultaneously amplifies the complexity and vulnerability of existing IT systems and infrastructure, potentially leading to issues such as data breaches or disruptions in daily operations resulting from attacks like phishing, social engineering, and DDoS, among others. Companies must consider the following aspects of IT security:

Network security

Network security protects access to the company network, preventing unauthorized and malicious access. Nowadays employees often access the company network remotely via the internet to carry out their daily tasks. It is crucial to implement mechanisms such as virtual private networks (VPNs), firewalls, and intrusion prevention systems (IPS) to enable employees to perform their work while preventing unauthorized access and data breaches.

Endpoint security 

Endpoint security is tied to devices connected to the company network, including phones, tables, laptops and even desktop computers used by employees or the company (servers). These devices require governance enforced through device management software, responsible for keeping all machines up-to-date, installing software security patches, and deploying rules to block access to malicious networks or websites.

Internet security

The internet serves as a vital channel for companies to offer their products or services. Typically, companies have at least one website available on the internet that interacts with multiple other systems. For instance, when an internet user makes a purchase, multiple interactions occur between various systems (adding user data, checking product stock, processing payment, reserving items in the warehouse). All these interactions, initiated via a browser, need to be secure. This can be achieved, for example, by employing SSL (Secure Socket Layer), web application firewalls (WAFs), and adhering to secure coding practices. 

Cloud security

Cloud computing has prompted companies to relocate their data and applications to data centers worldwide. Improper configuration can expose infrastructure and data on the internet. Some companies adopt multi-cloud strategies, posing challenges in securing data in transit and at rest. Key considerations include data encryption, access controls, (private) networking, backups, and monitoring tools to promptly detect abnormal accesses or cyber attacks.

Application security 

Application security must secure all software and applications used by the organization. IT systems often grow historically, resulting in the existence of multiple applications built with different programming languages and architectures. It is crucial to audit such applications for secure coding practices and regularly scan for vulnerabilities in the code.

Information security

Information security involves protecting the organization’s data, particularly sensitive data, and its use. Many companies still maintain their infrastructure (data centers), often used for confidential, mission-critical, or internally relevant processes. In this context, it is vital to provide training for employees, encrypt data, implement the Principle of Least Privilege (POPL), and have data backups in place.

CommunicationX is currently engaged in Cloud and Application Security for one of our clients. We will share details about our work and the tools we are using in a forthcoming post. Stay tuned!



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