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Explaining the Basics of a Cybersecurity Infrastructure

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In the age of information technology, a company that’s working without a solid cybersecurity infrastructure is pretty much destined to fail. But coming up with a structure all on your own can prove to be extremely difficult. That’s what we’re hopefully going to change today.

To avoid droning on for too long, let’s get into the definition of cybersecurity infrastructure, and see what it’s all about.

What Is a Cybersecurity Infrastructure?

A cybersecurity infrastructure is a process that you’ll find in a lot of IT environments, and it’s created to protect the underlying network infrastructure, among other things. You can do that by installing and applying preventative measures in various scenarios.

Some of the most common reasons that these infrastructures are used are to monitor and deny unauthorized access, deletion, and modification. They can also help with data security threats and breaches.

What’s more, some other infrastructure measures include:

  • Application security
  • Access control
  • Firewalls
  • Wireless security
  • VPNs

Why Is Proper Infrastructure Important?

All companies, no matter what industry they’re in, face threats on a daily basis. These threats could range anywhere from complex ransomware attacks all the way to physical breaches.

The two main types of risks that a cybersecurity infrastructure will have to fend off are getaway and infiltration risks. In case of a gateway risk, a hacker will gain access to a getaway router, and they can then monitor and modify traffic to the network. They can even deny it altogether.

On the other hand, an infiltration risk will allow hackers to gain even more control over the network. In addition to the network, hackers can also control and modify the traffic between the key hosts, and in turn exploit the relationship between the two.

Whichever attack it is, you’ll want to defend your network. One way to do that is by having an infrastructure that’ll protect the company.

The first step to success is using all the tools and strategies we mentioned above, like firewalls, wireless security, and prevention systems. Those alone should be enough to protect a company from having someone else gain control over the infrastructure.

How to Build a Cybersecurity Infrastructure

Now, let’s get down to the specifics, and talk about what it takes to create a structure of your own.

1. Do Constant Risk Assessments

First off, and we can’t stress this enough, doing constant risk assessments is beyond important for your structure. Why, you ask? Well, simply put, unless you can measure something, you won’t be able to improve it.

However, that’s easier said than done, especially when it comes to cybersecurity because defining and reducing risk is no small feat. But if you don’t have the resources in the beginning, you should at least start with periodic assessments.

You should be able to quantify all the potential threats, as well vulnerabilities that others could exploit. Also, you should include all the consequences of cyberattacks, and think about the specific damage that they can cause. Some of the most common vulnerabilities you should look for are:

  • Weak passwords
  • Permissive firewalls
  • Unpatched systems

2. Stay up to Speed

Another thing that the risk assessment will help with is staying up to speed on all things cybersecurity. Nowadays, hackers are coming up with more creative ways to get access to your network almost daily. So if you want to keep them out, you need to stay ahead.

Let’s see what that means in a specific example.

In 2020, we saw the majority of companies moving all their operations to home networks. People were working from home, where they didn’t have any sort of protection from attacks as they would in the office. Cyberattacks were on the rise, and bigger companies ended up paying a high price.

Even though a lot of vulnerabilities were exposed in 2020, companies with solid infrastructures managed to make it out just fine. One way they did that was by anticipating threats and having an immediate response.

3. Create a Proactive Approach

Speaking of an immediate response, another thing that all infrastructure should include are the steps to proactivity. In an ideal world, you and your organization don’t want to be responding to threats manually forever.

Only a few decades ago, most structures would only include details about physical security. That’s because companies assumed that only authorized personnel would have access to data.

But with a lot of the work switching over to the internet, remote working poses a new threat. So now, more than ever, it’s important to have a proactive approach.

cybersecurity infrastructure

Protecting the Infrastructure

Once you’ve worked together with the CSO or the security operations center to come up with a strategy, you need to make it bulletproof. You can do that by following these three steps.

1. Using Industrial Control Systems

First, you need to understand that your infrastructure probably won’t survive without industrial control systems (ICS) in place. These are especially important if your company is in the energy, manufacturing, water, or pharmaceutical sectors.

The three most common ICSs you can use are:

  • Systems control and data acquisition (SCADA)
  • Programmable logic controller (PLC)
  • Distributed control systems (DCS)

2. Building Management Systems

Next up are building management systems (BMS), which can control and monitor equipment in most modern buildings. That’s especially important in corporate security, and when you want to make sure that everything’s running smoothly.

With a BMS, you will have total control of lighting, fire, power, and security systems. You’ll also know as soon as something’s wrong, and you’ll hopefully already have a response ready. By having a handle on BMS, you can keep all the staff safe and healthy.

3. Security Monitoring

One thing that kind of goes without saying is doing constant security monitoring. It’ll keep both the infrastructure and the company safe. Through monitoring, you can get constant reports, and always know what’s going on and where. That alone should make being proactive and warding off threats much easier.

Bottom Line

As you can see, having a cybersecurity infrastructure is invaluable in today’s day and age. However, designing one, and learning how to protect it takes a lot of time, effort, and practice. So don’t expect to be doing it right out of the gate or on your first day at the job.

But if you want to be proactive, and stay ahead of the curve, you need to start learning about cyber trends, and the tools that will help you navigate them. So for more information, you can sign up for our newsletter, and get updates on the industry that actually matter.

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