Building a Micro-Segmentation Strategy
As we are all set to dive into the new-normal of remote and virtual working, cybersecurity risks are increasing on its verge. As we recognize the efficient benefits of cloud and virtual technology, we also have to recognize and cure the increasing cyber-attacks happening through virtual structures. Here is where secured network access technologies like Microsegmentation and Zero trust security comes as a major boon.
We all are in the transition of shifting to the cloud, remote desktops, and virtual technologies. Though as it has made our work more flexible, attackers have got new and easier opportunities to breach our systems. As per the Tessian report, it was found that close to 47% of employees cited phishing scams to be their distraction while working from home.
This shows how organizations and companies need to be more dynamic and granular with robust security solutions to prevent these increasing numbers. This is carried intensively with the help of Microsegmentation.
What is MicroSegmentation and Why is it important today?
Microsegmentation is an effective security practice that divides your network into different segments. These divided isolated segments are monitored and controlled individually so that each segment gets the highest of attention. The motive of this security practise is to diminish the surface of attack and to prevent unauthorised lateral movement. Through this security practice, security managers and engineers can isolate environment, applications and hybrid networks with specific secure zones.
It is very important to implement microsegmentation in today’s era where security breaches are multifold and huge in the perimeter. As per Ponemon’s cost of data report, the average time of detecting a data breach is 279 days and the average cost of a data breach is $3.92 million.
These numbers signify how data breaches and security attacks could affect an organisation’s functioning completely. Being the reason why building a system of microsegmentation is so relevant and important today.
5-step strategy for building Microsegmentation
The five important steps for building an effective segmentation strategy are as follows:
Step 1 - Identifying the High-Priority Assets
The initial step is to identify which assets are worth having maximum security. These could be important applications, database, systems, etc. Identifying the high priority assets will clear your direction of focus as to where your security efforts should be more inclined to. The high priority assets should be facilitated with fine-grained segmentation to ensure maximum security to these kinds of assets. This can be managed by granular access control effectively.
Step 2 - Navigating connections end-to-end and assessing vulnerability data
This step involves mapping or navigating the whole connection structure between remote connections, environment, workloads, and applications. Assessing the whole connection would also lead to performing data vulnerability scans.
This will help you to detect the loopholes and assess the parts of your connections which are most vulnerable to any possible data breaches. Once you understand which part is the most exposed one, you can deploy your segmentation accordingly.
Step 3 - Deploying the right types of Segmentation
There could be different types of Segmentation strategies depending on your required security needs. One should understand their needs and choose the most probable option for their security segmentation accordingly. The different types of segmentation to choose from involves:
- Vulnerability based Segmentation
This type of segmentation gives major significance to real-time vulnerability assessment and management. This segmentation could reduce the speed of breaches by reducing exposure of the vulnerable data.
- Application-based Segmentation
This segmentation segregates individual applications with individual security segments. The most valuable applications can be separated with a high-security segment that gives it the utmost importance and monitoring.
- User-based Segmentation
This segmentation lays down utmost security for a particular user logging into a particular workload. The user is segmented with the workload that is only allowed to contact servers for which the user has access.
- Location-based Segmentation
This segmentation segregates each security segment with each location of the data centre or cloud database. This could be very useful if you have locations in multiple countries and for each location, you need each segment of maximum security. The data centres or the other locations having sensitive data and information could be availed with high-security segments.
The above were few of the many segmentation options you get to implement microsegmentation strategy. In the end, it clearly depends on which category you need the highest security for regarding location, environment, user, application, vulnerability, etc.
Step 4 - Frame your segmentation strategy as per your operational security needs
To carry this step, firstly you would have to identify the areas of your operational environment. Here you will have to assess the need of fine-grained segmentation for areas requiring high security and coarse-grained segmentation for areas requiring low.
This will help you assess the exposed areas of your operational environment and the areas which require much importance. Following which, you can set your timelines and decide the segmentation you need for high-risk as well as low-risk operational environments.
Step 5 - Try and Deploy!
Once you are clear with the segmentation strategy you are going to deploy, test and try the segmentation and make sure everything is aligned perfectly. As the segmentation process might change the functioning of the areas, the alignment with the functions should be managed perfectly.
For instance, if you are deploying a location-based segmentation to a particular data centre, you should make sure that your security segmentation is completely compatible with the data centre operational functions. This enables you to not have any effects on your operational functioning and at the same time carry maximum segmented security.
The process and implementation of microsegmentation could have multifarious benefits on your system and environment. It could help you have extensive control over your locations, environment, data, users and all other areas of your organization structure.
Not just the segmentation, but effective security practices like zero trust security and Behavioural Biometrics could make your system effective against cyber and virtual malpractices.
We here at Instasafe are completely dedicated to achieving our clientele goals of hardcore security to their cloud and virtual functioning. We enable all kinds of security segmentation measures as well as data protection actions to help you function in this new-normal carefree.