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4 Effective Ways to Upgrade Your IT Security

4 Effective Ways to Upgrade Your IT Security – Regular cybersecurity improvements are a necessity of life in the business world—that’s a major lesson from the dramatic rise in cyberattacks in 2020. According to a Deloitte report, the use of previously unseen network or data breach techniques increased by 35% during the COVID-19 pandemic. Businesses that adopted telecommuting technology for the first time that year had to rethink their cybersecurity posture.

Post-COVID, potential attack surfaces will continue to grow as organizations modernize their information technology (IT) systems and expand their digital footprints. Some vital data safeguards that worked years ago may no longer be effective today against the constantly evolving cyber threats. This is why you need to regularly upgrade IT security systems.

Here are some practical strategies to fortify your corporate computer network and data defences.

Assess Your Data Security Vulnerabilities and Needs

You should not spend money on upgrading your IT security protocols before figuring out what your exact needs are. Instead, begin with a comprehensive risk assessment covering all the digital assets that your organization possesses. Identify possible threats to those assets and pinpoint any areas across the entire network where specific vulnerabilities to your assets may exist.

A thorough assessment of your cyber risk exposure should cover network essentials such as:

  • A scan of all endpoints connected to the network, such as smartphones, desktops, servers, or routers
  • Website security
  • Firewall configurations
  • Wireless network configurations
  • Status of antivirus software and firewalls
  • Applications

Include penetration testing in your vulnerability research. It’ll help you identify points where a risk of malware attack or data breach may exist.

Upgrade Your Network Equipment

Outdated IT infrastructure is often inefficient and highly prone to cyber-attacks. When planning and implementing any network equipment upgrade, you should bake system security into the entire process. You can avoid costly network breaches by upgrading key hardware components like:

1. Routers

When looking to upgrade to a modern router, things like multicore processors, scalability, and Gigabit Ethernet are likely your top priorities. These impressive capabilities can help future-proof your network for high throughput, but they pose a greater data security responsibility for your organization. A recent study uncovered dozens of security vulnerabilities involving hundreds of WiFi routers, including remote code execution and memory corruption.

You can address these network exposures more effectively by upgrading to routers with advanced security features such as:

  • Wi-Fi Protected Access 3 (WPA3) since older protocols are much weaker today
  • Hardware-anchored secure boot
  • Built-in Network Address Translation (NAT) firewall
  • Latest antivirus solutions

2. Switches

Programmable interfaces, IoT gateways, scalable deployment, and versatility are some of the remarkable features that a switch upgrade can provide. With the optimized network speed and increased traffic come a greater potential for threats. Like routers, many modern switches provide IT security out of the box with features such as:

  • MACsec 256-bit encryption
  • Firewall interfaces
  • Endpoint security

3. Firewalls

A firewall is your corporate network’s first line of defence against cyber breaches. If a hacker seized administrative control of your firewall, that’d be pretty much “game over” for your overall IT security. To secure the critical assets on your network, consider upgrading to an enterprise-grade firewall device with advanced hardware and software security capabilities. A comprehensive solution may include features like:

  • VPN support
  • Intrusion detection and prevention
  • URL filtering
  • Antispam
  • Application control

Upgrade Your Wireless Network Security

Organizations are upgrading their wireless networks for several reasons, including:

  • To create capacity for the exponentially growing volume of mobile data traffic
  • To support the Internet of Things (IoT) on a greater scale
  • To expand their corporate network coverage

If you have these goals in mind, you may explore infrastructural enhancements such as Wi-Fi 6-enabled networks. This wireless network technology is capable of four times the speed of 802.11ac Wave 2. Also, it’s highly secure, with better interference mitigation and WPA3 security.

Get Technical Assistance Onsite

Congratulations on the comprehensive plan to update your network equipment. You’re now ready to eliminate critical cybersecurity vulnerabilities that could compromise your network or even your entire operations. However, it’s sometimes costly and a bit intimidating to implement a well-thought-out plan, especially if you don’t have a fully-fledged IT support team in place. This is where onsite support to upgrade your IT security comes in!

Installing your network upgrades with the help of an experienced field service company has numerous perks, including:

  • Relevant technical expertise/experience: Any improperly configured network components like firewalls, routers, or wireless access points may nullify your investment in IT security upgrades. If your in-house team lacks the expertise to perfectly implement and test the configurations, consider outsourcing onsite IT support.
  • Data compliance: Field service technicians can help install and configure your networking devices in line with relevant data protection regulations or standards, including HIPAA and PCI DSS.
  • Cost-savings: You generally pay for outsourced onsite support on a per need basis. This model can eliminate unnecessary payroll costs for full-time IT support personnel who only work occasionally.
  • Extra relief: Network upgrades can be less stressful to implement when your staff work closely with experienced field technicians.

 

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