By Narayan Annamalai
When cybersecurity measures fail, the results can be devastating and costly. In the past year, network security failures have led to downed websites, delayed flights, unavailable video games, and much more. Such incidents can erode customer, investor, and board member trust and result in the types of headlines you don’t want. Technology challenges and the growing frequency and sophistication of cyberattacks spur conversation—and understandable worry—across industries. CISOs and other C-Suite members, as well as security professionals, recognize how increased cloud adoption and the shift toward hybrid work have expanded the attack surface. Some leaders also mention the challenges represented by the dynamic and complex regulatory landscape.
Consider these security statistics:
Your network is the heart of your organization—and a tempting prize for bad actors. Network security puts controls in place to help prevent cybercriminals from breaching it. Let’s explore how.
Protecting your data and assets
Cloud network security can keep pace with modern cybersecurity threats in a way that’s not possible with conventional security tools. It can secure the data and applications that are essential to supporting hybrid workforces in cloud environments. And it enables you to protect organization assets from emerging attacks and secure both apps and infrastructure.
Network security in the cloud is important because all assets are accessed over a network. Here are the major components of effective network security in the cloud:
- Zero Trust approach: Zero Trust means using least-privilege access to limit user access, always authenticating identity, and minimizing blast radius and segment access by assuming a security breach. It helps you manage people, devices, data, and assets so you can enable a hybrid workforce, protect sensitive information, and manage multicloud assets with confidence.
- Network firewall: A network firewall helps prevent cybercriminals from accessing your network resources by monitoring and inspecting your network traffic and blocking malicious traffic.
- DDoS protection: Distributed denial of service (DDoS) attacks involve cybercriminals targeting a website or service by flooding it with traffic to disrupt network services. DDoS protection typically provides monitoring, attack mitigation, and other features as defenses.
- Web application protection: Web applications and application programming interfaces (APIs) are popular targets for cybercriminals, as they are accessible over the public internet and may provide access to sensitive data. Web application protection helps protect websites, applications, and APIs from attacks.
Network security in action
Manufacturers create a significant volume of sensitive data, including intellectual property and research and development data. The IoT devices they use are highly targeted in DDoS attacks. And their supply chains are frequent targets as well.
Manufacturers may be more willing than those in other sectors to pay criminals ransom because of the sensitivity of their data and their reliance on the supply chain to receive product components and to ship their products. Attacks that target the supply chain could bring operations to a standstill.
Let’s take a look at a common manufacturing use case—secure connected insights, which can be used for theft prevention, loss monitoring, warehouse optimization, and traffic flow insights across a city or in a retail environment to automate stock replenishment. Manufacturers can monitor the activities of their warehouse floors, assembly lines, production, and distribution in real time via a connected factory setup.
Along with machine learning and compute technologies for mission-critical analytics, manufacturers and other industries need cloud network security to ensure that data is secure and disruption is minimized. It secures your apps and network infrastructure against threats. The benefits of using network security include reducing security threats, improving operational efficiency, and increasing business agility.
Cloud network security services, like those of Azure Network Security, paired with Microsoft Azure Virtual Machines powered by AMD, ensure you can deliver secure connected insights efficiently. Features include:
- Operations scalability to maximize warehouse efficiency
- Faster issue resolution tracking products across the value chain
- Better safety and quality control
- On-time delivery of goods and services
Protect against modern threats
Cyber threats continually challenge traditional security methods. Modern network security can answer the call with a Zero Trust approach, network firewall, DDoS protection, and web application protection.
Microsoft and AMD share the objective of prioritizing network security services—fully secure modern network protection for Azure workloads. Network security can help you protect your people, data, and operations in any sector.
Narayan Annamalai leads the SDN product management group in Microsoft Azure that focuses on virtual networks, load balancing and network security.