The Different Levels of Network Security
Network security is the process of protecting and preventing unauthorised access to commercial networks. As a theory, it complements end-point security, which mainly focuses on physical devices; this means that network security focuses more on how these physical devices are interconnected, and more importantly, on how they interact. While end-point security mostly deals with the security of the communication links between an organisation’s users and its information systems, the network-level security provides a level of protection that doesn’t always have to be coupled with end-point security. This is because while end-point security is usually coupled with network security in order to keep information secure, network security can also work independently.
When considering network security, it is important to think about three different levels: the physical layer (which is the protection layer), the middle layer (which is the security of networks themselves) and the end-user layer (which is the security of an organisation’s computer network). In order for a given system to be considered secure, one needs to consider all the layers in order to provide maximum protection against attack. The three levels that network security encompasses are physical layer, security of networks, and the end-user layer.
Physical security refers to the security of physical networks (for example, networks that are connected to the outside world); this includes the protection of a system from being attacked by outsiders, or even those inside the organisation (as is also done for data, but with different reasons). As such, physical security is a high-end layer that involves the physical isolation of the network and the security of the internal networks that are connected to it. Security of networks refers to the security of networks that is usually not as high as physical security. This type of security mainly covers the security of a network from external attacks, but it also takes into consideration the security of the internal network from outsiders as well, so that when the security of the internal network is breached, this does not allow outsiders to compromise the security of the external network as well.
The middle layer is another high-end layer, which is more like an interface between the physical security layer and the end-user layer. Here, the two layers work together to create an overall level of security for the entire network. Since the middle layer is more like a firewall than the other layers, its primary responsibility is to ensure that no system on the network can get into the network without authorisation, and to maintain the integrity of the network in the event of a system getting into the network.
Finally, the final layer is an end-user layer. It involves the security of an end-user, whether they are an employee or a customer. This layer provides the security of the data that an end-user accesses when using the network, whether it is confidential information, intellectual property, financial data or even personal information. It is important to note that the end-user layer does not cover just the data security; it also takes into consideration the security of the company’s customers in the case of an issue with a service or product that affects the security of the data.
While there are many different levels of network security, it is important to know that each level has its own responsibilities. These responsibilities are very important for any business to understand, since they play a very crucial role in how a business runs.