Hot IT Networking Trends for Fall 2012

Network MonitoringTechnology never stops evolving. And the ever changing Information Technology landscape— now including cloud computing and BYOD (Bring Your Own Device)—has had an enormous impact on IT consultants and the challenges they face. What are some of the ways companies and their IT departments are evolving to meet these new challenges? Read below to examine a few hot trends in network management.

Network monitoring for a new era: Improved visibility

The cloud is not only revolutionizing business operations around the world- it is changing the IT security landscape as well. Combined with more mobility in the workforce (as workers rely on their own PCs, smartphones and tablets to get their work done) and an alarming rise in “hactivism,” the cloud has many IT managers scrambling to ensure vital data stays secure. To face new data security threats head on, the biggest trend in network monitoring continues to be improving network visibility.

Network visibility has always been a factor in the monitorying of network security. Initially, IT administratos used a SNMP/Syslog solution, and then moved on to Netflow. The latest means to gain improved network visibility is a packet-based solution still in its infancy, but it is one that promises to deliver better network visibility to help deal with cyber threats. It allows you to better view the monitoring and recording infrastructure of your network.  This means that breaches can be spotted early, and IT departments can be more proactive in stopping breaches and identifying what pieces of data (if any) were stolen.

To make packet-based network visibility more effective, IT professionals should think of it as network-wide, similar to how they think of switching and routers. This involves ensuring the monitoring and security vendors a company works with is able to meet the needs of their entire network now and in the future. Scalability is important.

Keeping BYOD and consumerization/mobility more secure

It has been estimated that by the year 2018 nearly 70 percent of our workforce will operate using their own personal devices, whether it’s a smartphone, tablet or some other unforeseen technology. For network monitoring, the challenge behind this trend in consumerization and mobility becomes “managed diversity.” This means thinking about allowing different security profiles and a wider range of trust levels with employees and their personal devices.

To better manage BYOD, IT managers who want the most secure network monitoring for their company need to focus on stronger passwords, device security levels, and encryption. It is also important to plan for what happens if a user loses their device or it is stolen. This may warrant investing in virtual machine technology in some cases. Although the use of BYOD devices can pose a huge risk to security if not properly utilized, the monitoring and avoidance of some applications and general practicality can go a long way in terms of securing against vulernabilities.

Keeping an eye on the cloud

As the business world moves into the cloud, IT security professionals need to weigh the risks of the solution with the benefits to the company. For better network monitoring there is a rising trend in having more control over large data center deployments. For improved network monitoring when the cloud is in use, a third-party assessment regarding security should be sought out before the transition.

To monitor your network in the most secure way possible, it is important for IT professionals to allow for accurate estimation of the current effectiveness of a company’s security controls. Knowing when to upgrade your network monitoring efforts with a managed security service can help keep your business ahead of the curve.

To learn more ways to manage your network's security, visit the iCorps website today.

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