Understanding Cybersecurity Layering: The Six Layers

Cybersecurity is an ever-growing concern for businesses in a world where malicious actors are increasingly infiltrating corporate systems. But do we really understand the different layers of this complex infrastructure? Do you think your business’s information will be completely safe and secure from potential threats by checking off one task? 

Think again - just blocking malware won’t guarantee protection; there is much more to learn about cybersecurity. Nowadays, the simplest way to break into a network is often through social engineering or other sophisticated methods. 


In this blog post, we'll explore all six layers of cybersecurity—topics such as risk management, encryption technologies, system security architecture, and more - so that your business can stay ahead of cyber attacks!


The six layers of cybersecurity


Think of cybersecurity as a protective sphere, starting with mission-critical assets at its core and five more layers of cybersecurity protection emanating from that core. Beginning with mission-critical assets, cybersecurity strategies move on to data security, application security, endpoint security, network security, perimeter security, and finally, the human layer. Designing a comprehensive cybersecurity strategy should keep these seven layers of cybersecurity in mind and give them each their due attention. 


The human layer


The human layer of cybersecurity is the last line of defense in protecting networks and systems from attack. It involves educating people about cyber threats, proper security practices, and other measures to help protect against attacks. This can include basic training on identifying phishing emails, understanding the importance of malware protection, and recognizing suspicious behavior that could indicate a breach has occurred. 


Perimeter security measures


Perimeter security measures are methods used to protect an organization's sensitive information and assets from unauthorized access. These measures create a protective barrier around the network's perimeter, making it more difficult for attackers to gain entry. Examples of perimeter security measures include firewalls, Unified Threat Management Systems (UTM), Intrusion Detection Systems (IDS), authentication, anti-malware solutions, and even physical barriers such as access control gates. 


Network security measures


Network security measures are essential for any organization that relies on IT systems to function. Network security solutions provide powerful protection from cyber threats, data loss, and other vulnerabilities by monitoring the network for suspicious activity, blocking malicious traffic, and encrypting sensitive data. Common network security measures include firewalls, Virtual Private Networks (VPNs), Intrusion Detection Systems (IDS), authentication protocols, Data Loss Prevention (DLP) solutions, and more. 


Endpoint security measures


Endpoint security measures are designed to protect devices and data stored on individual systems rather than the entire network. Endpoint security solutions monitor for malicious activity, block unauthorized access, detect viruses, encrypt sensitive data, and even control user permissions. Common endpoint security solutions include mobile device management (MDM) tools, antivirus software, application whitelisting, patch management solutions, two-factor authentication (2FA), and endpoint detection and response technologies. When implemented correctly, these solutions can provide powerful protection for an organization's network infrastructure.


Application security measures


Application security measures are designed to protect the data stored within an application from external threats and unauthorized access. Standard application security solutions include input validation, authentication protocols, authorization procedures, data encryption methods, and digital signature verification. Additionally, developers can use secure coding guidelines to ensure that the application operates securely and prevents malicious activity. 


Mission-critical assets


All of these layers aim to keep mission-critical assets safe. Organizations should leverage data encryption and cloud security solutions to protect mission-critical assets from external threats. Furthermore, user education is essential for reducing the risk of cyberattacks – regular training on topics like effective password management and phishing awareness can go a long way in helping an organization stay secure. With the right technologies and processes in place, organizations can protect their mission-critical assets from malicious actors.


Leverage the Layers for a Strong Cybersecurity Framework


Understanding these layers will help your organization minimize its exposure to risk. Having a strong grasp of the main principles of network and data security will go a long way both for your cybersecurity team, whether they are in-house or outsourced, and for your team, in general, to work together to protect your data. Compuquip’s experience shows that most cybercriminals target these seven layers differently, so understanding where each layer has the most vulnerabilities is critical. 


Reach out and speak with a CISO now to learn more about a comprehensive cybersecurity strategy for your organization. 


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