How Zero Trust Protects Your Business

by | Cybersecurity

Some of the most egregious data breaches happened because once hackers gained access inside corporate firewalls, they were able to move through internal systems without much resistance.  Another challenge is that companies don’t have corporate data centers serving a contained network of systems but instead typically have some applications on-premises and some in the cloud with users – employees, partners, customers – accessing applications from a range of devices from multiple locations and even potentially from around the globe. Perimeter security only is no longer effective on its own. So how can zero trust protect your business?

Zero Trust is centered on the belief that organizations should not automatically trust anything inside or outside their network and instead must verify anything and everything trying to connect to its systems before granting access. Zero trust applies more micro-level perimeter enforcement based on users, their locations, and other data to decide whether to trust a user, machine, or application seeking access to a particular part of the enterprise. Zero trust cuts off all access until the network knows who you are and whether you are authorized to access assets within the network.

Four common attacks that zero trust provides defense for:

Remote Access Attacks: Remote access to your systems for outside users and partners is vital for today’s businesses, but it’s also a fertile avenue of attack for cybercriminals. Zero trust makes sure authorized visitors to your servers and systems can’t deliberately or unintentionally let malware in. It establishes per-user limits that create access policies for organizations or unique users, protects remote assets, and unobtrusively controls the applications of trusted visitors to prevent cybercriminals from piggybacking in.

Malware: Malware creators are getting faster and faster at releasing new threats. Last year, nearly 1 million new pieces of malware were created each day. Traditional antivirus vendors take hours to days to update to detect a new trend malicious software. Ransomware and other malicious software can copy or encrypt your files in a few minutes. Zero trust solutions use application whitelisting and fencing to protect against vulnerabilities embedded in trusted programs, hiding in memory, maliciously encrypting data, and other gaps not even discovered yet.

Data Theft: If you’re not fully aware of what is happening on your data storage devices at all times, they are vulnerable. Zero trust lets you track and control external and internal data access by tracking permission changes, controlling physical copying, monitoring file access, and restricting application data access.

Internal IT Disputes: Zero trust enables meticulous oversight of your data and applications to help you monitor employee computer activity and have a source of truth for any IT issue. The solutions tracks file access to provide detailed, real-time reports on who accessed data and what they did with it, tracks changes and deletions for a complete history of data, and blocks unauthorized apps (malware or not).

Zero trust is not just a technology, it’s an adjustment of mindset and process. It’s about building a strategy from the inside out, rather than outside in. Pearl Solutions Group can help you implement zero trust within your network, placing network segmentation and next-gen firewalls to control who, what, where, and when someone connects based on your individual business operations.

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