You are probably aware that cybersecurity threats are never lying dormant. The landscape is continually shifting, with new cybersecurity threats emerging almost on an hourly basis. This is a great challenge for IT specialists, security officers, and network administrators. Improving network security is paramount to protecting sensitive data and keeping cybercriminals at bay.
The main challenge here is what security measure to use. The network security tools market is flooded with hundreds of software products. As you might have guessed, not all of them are the same in terms of efficiency. To help you out, we have made a list of the essential network security solutions you can use to minimize cybersecurity risks.
Properly Maintain Your Network Infrastructure
A network security audit tool is a necessary network security tool in the IT personnel’s toolkit. The configuration of your network and its infrastructure can create backdoors for cybercriminals to exploit. Nowadays, networks are also dynamic as changes are made regularly. It makes infrastructure auditing more crucial than ever.
Netwrix made it to our list because it is a free tool you can use to do regular network audits. It can help you get valuable insights into the current network configuration. The tool comes with a real-time monitoring feature. You can use it to monitor all devices attached to your network, identify configuration changes, hardware malfunction, and detect threats early on.
Netwrix also sends you daily reports to quickly catch up with everything that’s going on with your network.
Nagios – Monitor Your Network Traffic
To properly secure your network, you need to have insight into your network traffic. Thanks to Nagios, you can do it for free because the platform offers an open-source option. It is one of the best network security tools when it comes to traffic monitoring.
Nagios has wide-range support. You can use it to monitor apps, network management protocols, logs, and support both Windows and Linux server monitoring. You can watch all network connections and also manage routers and switches from one place. The tool also allows you to identify changes in response times throughout your network infrastructure.
Nagios Network Analyzer is also capable of detecting potential security threats and assessing the health of the network. With all this information at their hands, system administrators can react in time to prevent intrusions.
Nessus – Keep Your Network Vulnerability-Free
Even the best system administrators are unable to keep up with the latest cybersecurity practices. They need all the help they can get to stay on top of identifying and patching network vulnerabilities. Nessus is one of the network security tools that can help you test your network for vulnerabilities.
Nessus comes from Tenable, a leader in the cybersecurity landscape. The software is easy to use. It is built to help you regularly perform network vulnerability testing. Nessus can identify weak spots in your network and security configurations. More precisely, it can detect misconfigurations in the operating systems on all network devices and identify bugs, obsolete and unpatched software, and missing updates.
Metasploit – Vigorously Test Your Network Security
Keeping your network vulnerability-free covers only one aspect of protection from potential cybersecurity attacks. Now you need to test it against real cyberattacks, and Metasploit is a tool that can help you with that. Metasploit belongs to a group of network security tools built for penetration testing.
Metasploit features a dozen exploitable vulnerability scripts. You can run the scripts to test your network defenses. If your security fails, the Metasploit will help you identify backdoors and enable you to know what you need to improve your network security.
You can also schedule and manage security assessments. With Metasploit, you will be able to adopt an ongoing penetration testing strategy. It will help you keep your network security tight.
Kismet – Keep Your Wi-Fi Network Secure
Since most of the networks have at least one Wi-Fi node in their infrastructure nowadays, you need to improve your Wireless LAN security. This is very important because Wi-Fi networks are prone to cyberattacks. Kismet is a handy piece of network security software built to help you improve your wireless network security practices.
Kismet enables you to monitor wireless network activity and all the connected devices. The tool has a built-in wireless network audit software to help you identify potential breach points. The Kismet database is regularly updated with the latest malicious software threats so that you can identify and prevent data breach attempts before they cause any damage.
Forcepoint NGFW – Keep Your Network Behind a Solid Firewall
The first line of your network defense is a firewall. It can help you filter the traffic and have complete control over the network ports, and communicate inside and outside of your network. To do it, you need to use an advanced firewall with many configuration options. There are many network firewalls on the market, but the one that caught our eye is Forcepoint Next-Generation Firewall (NGFW).
Forcepoint NGFW is excellent for network administrators that work in both in-house and cloud-based environments. It offers automatic protection and in-details configuration. The Forcepoint’s developer team does an excellent job updating the database for known malicious software, exploits, and network intrusion methods. It will help you build and maintain a secure network and minimize the penetration risks.
Forcepoint NGFW also features a console; IT staff can set up firewall parameters for cloud-based environments. There is a basic network security analysis tool. The firewall also comes with a quick response to incidents to help you minimize the damage of intrusion.
This completes our list of essential network security tools. As you can see, every tool on our list has a practical case. They cover all the aspects of network security, ranging from penetration and vulnerability testing, to traffic monitoring and Wi-Fi network protection.