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Unified security management key to rapid response

ComputerNetApp

Faced with an increasingly complex information security environment, IT departments need streamlined, real-time information in order to combat threats, says Jason Brown, solutions architect at McAfee.

The information security environment is increasingly complex, with numerous devices, systems and security solutions to be managed, he notes.

“Today, we are managing everything from desktops to virtual and embedded devices, a complex mobile environment, and multiple endpoint protection technologies. Added to this is the challenge the IT department faces of doing more with the same – or even less – and the fact that malware authors are becoming increasingly sophisticated, and the number of threats has increased,” he says.

Now, malware can spread around the globe in a matter of seconds, Brown says. Visibility of the entire ecosystem, and immediate access to the necessary information, is key to effectively managing information security and responding quickly to these threats.

However, many organisations are still in a ‘reactive phase’, where they have multiple security solutions producing information in silos, he says.

“When the information is in silos, particularly in a large, distributed estate, it could take hours to get the necessary information and take action when an attack is imminent or taking place. But with the speed at which attacks can be carried out, hours is simply too long.

“You might only get the information you need after the attack is over,” he says.

“If an incident is unfurling or I know I am likely to be under attack, I need to know right now what my immediate situation is. And with limited resources, I also need to focus on what is most important.”

Brown adds: “The best managed security is where the environment is consolidated and optimised, with visibility across the environment. The ability to amalgamate that information and make sense of it is more important now than ever – and not just for reacting to an attack.”

Brown points out that managing increasingly complex security environments takes more and more time, impacting on the effective use of the limited resources within the IT department.

By breaking down the silos for end-to-end visibility, and enabling automation across the environment, the IT department can improve its efficiency and reduce costs, he says.

Simplified security operations and automated administrative tasks streamline workflows and management and reduce operating costs, he notes. With a unified view of the environment, IT is able to prioritise critical tasks and response times are improved in the case of disaster recovery.

Thomas Maxeiner, team lead: Enterprise Solution Architects – Endpoint and Mobile at McAfee EMEA, will speak on the subject at the upcoming ITWeb Security Summit. For more information about this event, click here.

Story by Tracy Burrows

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