Network Performance and Network Security Both Require Effective Monitoring
There are two main aspects to network monitoring: performance and security. Failing to spot potential problems can leave to vulnerable to slowdowns and outages that impact end users as well as breaches that expose confidential data. Comprehensive monitoring strategies need to address both aspects. Make sure your monitoring includes:
- Alerting. Network ops teams can’t respond to problems they don’t know about, so alerting is a critical feature of any monitoring tool. Real-time alerts should warn you about trends before they develop into full-fledged issues that are visible to the business. It’s important you be able to finetune the alerting criteria so your team doesn’t get overwhelmed and tune them out.
- Visualizations. Screen after screen of data is useful for drilling into details, but not for recognizing status at a glance. Monitoring systems should include graphs and charts that summarize metrics rather than overwhelming you with too much detail.
- Discovery. Keeping network diagrams up to date manually is a hopeless task. There are just too many devices and teams are too busy doing what they consider meaningful work to perform data entry. Make sure your network monitoring tools can discover and map your devices and connections.
- Bandwidth monitoring. There are few performance metrics more important than bandwidth utilization. Bandwidth is limited, and excess use results in performance degradation without fail. Monitoring bandwidth lets you identify any bandwidth hogs and fix the issue. Other key network metrics to monitor include packet loss and latency.
- Protocol monitoring. Networks depend on various communication protocols to ensure correct transmission and processing of data; these include HTTP, SNMP, and TCP/IP. Monitoring these protocols for any problems is important for making sure communication is happening normally.
- Threat detection. Threat detection is important for identifying threats to your network security. This often includes analytics to identify abnormal patterns of behavior that can identify malicious activity. Be aware that this requires monitoring in two directions: abnormal attempts at gaining entry to the network and resources, as well as abnormal movement of data out of the network.
Effective network monitoring requires monitoring the network itself, as well as associated devices, including routers and switches. Making that monitoring comprehensive, so it addresses both performance and security considerations, can require multiple tools.
Prescient Solutions has expertise in both network management and information security. Our managed technology services help businesses in Chicago and Schaumburg make sure nothing is overlooked when devising network solutions. Contact us to learn how our certified networking and security experts can design an appropriate monitoring strategy for your business.