One of the hottest topics right now in the business world is security. Virtually every company that uses the internet has acknowledged that security is a high priority issue that will only become more important in the future. Identifying a problem is an important first step, but without action it ends up not causing any meaningful changes to occur. The issue companies are facing is determining what the best way is to make the most impact on their current levels of security while using the smallest amount of resources. Although there is no simple solution that is guaranteed to fix the problem, having a multi-faceted solution increases the chances of an overall positive result. The three facets most likely to lead to a positive result are user experience, security technology, and user education.
Constructing the best solution first requires knowing what the problem is. In the case for company network security, the problem isn’t the security technology-it’s the employees. More often than not network breaches are caused by human error-clicking on a suspect link in an email, visiting an obscure website, downloading sketchy content, etc. Taking the time to observe how employees interact with the applications they use daily will identify the weak points in the network and give companies a sense of what things need to be addressed. Going even deeper than that and analyzing the motivations behind why employees take the actions that they do relating to their applications will give an even more comprehensive understanding and perhaps more meaningful insights into the minds of the employees.
Using the knowledge captured by reviewing employee behavior relating to application usage, security technology options should be compared and contrasted. Security technology is being improved every day, and not all options will best fit the needs of the company as it pertains to the weak points identified. The best way to ensure that incidents do not occur is to ensure that every precaution has been taken to make the network as secure as possible by addressing specific weak points. The focus in security tech has largely shifted from reactive actions to proactive actions when it comes to dealing with threats. Being proactive about threats is an ongoing but necessary process that is ever changing with technology.
It’s also important to educate the users about the security measures taken so that they get a better sense of how they are protected. Teaching best practices will make the employees conscience of their actions while using applications and over time will begin to change their overall awareness when using any internet connected application. This part of the security solution is often times the most overlooked even though most incidents are due to human error and not technology error. The appropriate way to educate employees is to use a cause and effect method rather than just giving them rules. Explaining that their actions have reactions will show them why the behavior is dangerous to the network and they will begin to understand the importance of being aware and vigilant when it comes to using applications. For general safe computing tips, click here.
Taking the time up front to understand how employees use applications will show what weak point exist within the network. Acquiring security technology that addresses these weak points will save money because there won’t be layers upon layers of technology trying to cover all possible weak points-only the identified weak points will be addressed by the technology. Another low cost fact is educating employees about best practices relating to application usage. All in all, creating a multi-faceted solution allows security to stay at the top of mind for the company as a whole which will cause the greatest effect on network security.