Network Access Control was rated highest of all security technologies for defending against online threats, according to a new research report sponsored by network security solutions provider ForeScout Technologies. It also found that 77 percent of IT professionals use NAC or are planning to use it for mobile security.
The “2014 Cyberthreat Defense Report” was based on research from CyberEdge Group, and is based on responses from more than 750 security decision makers and practitioners in organizations with more than 500 employees in North America and Europe.
The report also showed the compelling need for continuous monitoring and mitigation. More than three out of five of participants had been breached in 2013. quarter of all participants said a lack of employer investment in adequate defenses was a contributing factor.
More than half (53 percent) of respondents said they use NAC to detect host security misconfigurations, and 51 percent use NAC to detect vulnerabilities and security misconfigurations in transient laptops and mobile devices.
The report implies that NAC will be necessary given the expected increase in Bring-Your-Own-Device Adoption policies, in which many new, potentially unsafe devices can enter the network. It’s expected that BYOD will jump from 31 percent in 2014 to 77 percent in 2016.
The cloud presents something of a paradox where network power is at once concentrated and diffused, causing problems when devices may be given access to cloud services and data that they shouldn’t have. In these cases, access control, identity management and governance policies should keep clouds safe.
It should come as no surprise that endpoints were cited as the weakest link in most organizations’ IT environment, according to the report.
NAC seems to be one way for networks to remain relatively safe in environments that span data center, external clouds, PC hard drives, and a myriad of portable devices.