Advanced threat protection is a double-edged sword. Initially, it must keep out any and all malicious threats. But should those defenses be breached, it must also ensure that sensitive data can't be extracted, and that threat protections can’t be further compromised.
In practice, there is no real protection without both of these components. Today's advanced threats have become so sophisticated that trying to stop all of them is a pipe dream. Rather, the most effective strategy is minimizing the impact they are able to make. Here's how it works:
Step One – Defense.
There are many strategies for trying to block and deflect the myriad attacks that today's IT faces. But the single most important strategy is to take an integrated approach rather than relying on multiple disparate protections. A piecemeal security solution will always have vulnerabilities and operate in a reactive manner. An integrated security solution creates a sum greater than its parts and forces threats to react to it instead.
The components of this integrated approach are too numerous to list in their entirety, but they include emerging threat analysis, global threat monitoring and real-time network monitoring. Together, these components can identify the latest cause for alarm before it has been unleashed, and spot it before it gets anywhere close to the native IT.
Step Two – Detection.
IT security is like a net: It can catch a lot, but inevitably, things will slip through. When that happens, understanding the nature of the threat and its potential for damage is imperative. The best advanced threat protection strategies isolate anything deemed suspicious in a secure cloud environment, then run simulations and tests to better understand the malware’s source and destination and how best to eradicate it. A cloud-based approach speeds up detection times significantly, minimizes the effect on network performance and catches a larger number of carefully disguised threats.
Step Three – Response.
Minimizing the impact of a security breach requires a human response. Unfortunately, IT teams are often too small and overworked to respond to every threat as quickly as necessary. Advanced threat protection empowers administrators to protect data and applications by automating as much of the monitoring and response process as possible. Once again, using an integrated approach, the system determines how serious any given threat is, where and to what extent it will strike, and whether or not other security measures have effectively eliminated it. The system then alerts administrators to the highest-priority threats so that they can be addressed first. This helps prevent the kinds of large-scale breaches and corruptions that have been in the news so frequently lately.
Then the process resets itself. Data gleaned from every step in the process is used to enhance protection and close the loop the threat exploited. Should another breach occur, detection measures will be better equipped to isolate and neutralize the threat sooner. In this way, advanced threat protection grows and evolves to keep out more of the bad and keep in more of the good.