Networks need to be a lot of things – fast, easy to navigate, scalable, and not congested. Above all else, though, your network needs to be safe and secure. Anyone who connects to your network needs to be sure that they aren’t risking their device’s security. Unfortunately, network threats aren’t going away, and they can do major damage to your network.
Using a network performance monitor (NPM) can help you to combat potential – and actual – security risks. While NPMs are designed primarily for use in analyzing network performance, many also have built-in features to help keep track of network security. Below, we’ve listed some of the ways a set of NPM tools can improve the security of your network.
Full visibility and device detection
NPMs grant visibility into a network so users can fully understand and visualize the scale of their network. Without full visibility, it can be impossible to determine where threats are located or where they’re coming from. A good NPM can provide the user with info on their entire network at any time, no matter how expansive it is. Most NPMs monitor in real time, automatically detecting new devices and problem areas and updating constantly. They can also draw network maps that display your network in an easy-to-understand visual to give you a full network abstraction.
DoS attack insights
Denial-of-service (DoS) attacks are one of the more common cyberattacks that businesses have to deal with. They work by flooding a network (or whatever they want to attack) with fabricated information in an attempt to overload the system and crash it. While these attacks are harmful, many NPMs are equipped to prevent them from wreaking too much havoc. NPMs detect and log data transferals on your network, so if a sudden spike in data transmissions occur, you’ll be able to spot it. You can also see where the data is coming from and the path it takes along your network to determine which areas of your network are being affected.
NPMs can also benchmark your network’s standard data usage. By establishing your networks’ typical level of data traffic, your NPM will know instantly that something’s wrong when it detects traffic levels far exceeding the norm. If you’ve set up automatic alerts, you’ll know when a DoS attack strikes as it happens, allowing you to take immediate action.
Network security threats are typically intended to disable networks and devices connected to them. An attack must first find a connection port to anchor on in order to get onto the network itself. Then, it can travel across the network and disable devices.
When a device goes down, your NPM tool will detect it and alert you to the problem. Since your NPM is typically stored in the center of your network, it can take some time for the threat to reach the device that houses your monitoring tool. That means that it will notice the attack before it has a chance to reach the NPM and notify you of the problem.
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