Organizations of all sizes and industries are looking to strengthen their security posture with a Zero Trust implementation as it’s based on the principle of continuously verifying and validating all users, devices, and network traffic. Traditional security measures fall short in the advancements of phishing methods, increased device usage, and the rise of remote/hybrid work. The likelihood of a breach and its severity is thus exceedingly high without advanced data protection.
A Zero Trust architecture improves an organization's security posture by offering several advantages including enhanced data protection, compliance, and improved system access efficiency. Discover why traditional security measures are insufficient and how a Zero Trust implementation can help secure your organization's sensitive data.
Why Traditional Security Measures Fall Short
One of the main reasons traditional security measures fall short is that they operate under the assumption that all users and devices within the network can be trusted. This is a dangerous assumption to make, as it only takes one compromised account or device to provide an attacker with a foothold into the network. Traditional security measures often rely heavily on user authentication and access controls at the perimeter, but once a user gains access, they are usually granted broad privileges throughout the network.
According to the FireEye and Mandant 2021 M-Trends report, “70% of phishing emails are opened.” Without an advanced security network that uses zero trust architecture, the breach could quickly escalate. Sure, you could be in the 30% that has a 100% accuracy rate in spotting phishing and taking the appropriate action, but who in your organization is a part of the 70%? Zero Trust supports the extending teams who may not be as well equipped to spot and stop potential security breaches. In the IBM Cost of Data Breach Report in 2022, “Only 26% of organizations have a response plan for phishing incidents.”
Traditional security measures often lack visibility and control over network traffic once it is inside the network. Once an attacker gains access to the network, they can move laterally and explore different segments without much resistance. Security without a Zero Trust framework is often not equipped to detect and respond to these types of lateral movements. The Zero Trust principles support to ensure organizations are less vulnerable to internal threats.
Without the Zero Trust pillars, security measures fall short in their reactive nature as they rely on signatures or known patterns of attack to identify threats. This means that new and emerging threats can easily bypass these defenses until they are detected, and signatures or patterns are created. By then, it may be too late, and considerable damage could already be done.
How a Zero Trust Implementation Improves Security Posture
Traditional security measures that rely on a perimeter-based approach are no longer sufficient in protecting organizations from advanced cyber threats.
A Zero Trust implementation takes a more comprehensive approach to security by assuming that no user or device can be trusted, regardless of their location or network.
The Zero Trust framework revolves around the idea of least privilege access, meaning that users are only granted the minimum level of access required to perform their specific tasks. This approach minimizes the risk of unauthorized access and limits the potential damage that can be caused by compromised accounts or devices.
Zero Trust architecture operates on the principle of micro-segmentation, dividing the network into smaller, isolated segments or zones. This granular segmentation enhances security by compartmentalizing sensitive data and applications, reducing the attack surface, and limiting lateral movement within the network, explained above. Each segment is protected by access controls, such as multi-factor authentication and encryption, ensuring that only authorized users can access specific resources.
One of the key components of a Zero Trust implementation is continuous monitoring and analysis of network traffic. This allows for real-time detection and response to potential threats. By analyzing behavior patterns, anomalies can be identified and acted upon promptly, preventing or minimizing the impact of potential security breaches.
Adapting the Zero Trust principles require a shift in mindset from the traditional perimeter-based security approach. It requires organizations to adopt a comprehensive and proactive security strategy that focuses on securing individual assets and monitoring network activity. By embracing this innovative approach, you can create a more resilient and robust security infrastructure that can adapt to the ever-changing threat landscape.
The secure step forward with JourneyTEAM and Microsoft 365
JourneyTEAM has expert consultants and solution architects who are experts in the Zero Trust pillars. A Zero Trust implementation secures assets across the cloud environment, spanning Microsoft 365 services, devices, and data, be it on-premises or remote. Stay ahead of regulatory compliance and adaptability through the long-term resilience, confidence, and trust that the Zero Trust framework provides.