Achieving Better Network Security in a Hybrid World

By Joe Kim, SolarWinds EVP, Engineering and Global CTO


There currently exists a global shortage in cybersecurity experts – not just by a few thousand, or even tens of thousands, but a shortage of some one million experts.


This isn’t good news for agencies, particularly with the rising complexity of hybrid IT infrastructures of both in-house managed and cloud-based services. Traditional network monitoring tools and strategies fail to provide complete visibility into the entire network, making it difficult to pinpoint the root causes of problems, let alone anticipate those problems before they occur. This can open up security holes to outside attackers and insider threats.


Federal cybersecurity teams need complete views of their networks and applications, regardless of whether they are on-site or hosted. IT managers must also be able to easily and quickly troubleshoot, identify, and fix issues wherever they reside. Even better, they should be equipped with systems that can predict when a problem may occur based on past historical data.


To help ensure the security of their networks, managers should explore options that offer three key benefits.


Better visibility. IT managers must manage and track multiple application stacks across their different environments. Therefore, they should consider solutions that track and monitor both on-premises and off-premises network activity.


These solutions must provide a single-pane-of-glass view into all network activities, and allow for review of data correlations across application stacks. Seeing different data types side by side can help you identify anomalies and track cybersecurity problems directly to the source. Timelines can be laid on top of this information to correlate the timing of an event to a specific slowdown or outage. This information can be used collectively to quickly remediate issues that could impact network security.


Better proactivity. Predictive analytics allows managers to create networks that effectively learn from past incidents and behaviors. Network monitoring tools can automatically scan for anomalies that have caused disruptions in the past. When something is detected, managers can receive notifications and directions on how to mitigate the problem before it happens.


In essence, IT managers go from reacting to network issues to proactively preventing them. This is a handy strategy that helps keep networks secure and running without demanding a lot of resources.


Better collaboration. One of the benefits of having a smaller staff is that the network management team can be more nimble, as long as they have the right collaboration tools in place. Individuals must be able to easily share data, charts, and metrics with the rest of the team. This sets up a baseline, helps prevent confusion, and helps bring the team together to tackle problems in a more efficient manner.


Collaboration becomes even more critical when working with hybrid IT environments. Everyone needs to be able to work off the same canvas to address potential security problems.


Better security and hybrid IT environments can coexist, but agencies need to make sure that the managers they have on staff are equipped with tools that make bringing these two vital concerns together in a more cohesive, efficient, and effective manner.


Find the full article on GovLoop.

Source: solarwinds GEEK SPEAK


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