It's a common theme amongst colleges and universities today, you have to offer higher performance with lower restrictions to an exponentially increasing number of users. No matter where they are on campus, no matter what the device.
This presents a few challenges. College and university IT teams need to address the following network security challenges:
- Safeguard everyone's personal data, this includes both students, faculty and alumni.
- Guarantee that all academic research is protected.
- Secure all financial information and transactions
- Anticipate and create a network that can scale to support the school's current and future needs.
- Have the ability to deliver and execute advanced reporting and analytics
- Prevent known and unknown threats
- Manage high-bandwidth using and possibly dangerous applications
- Manage network and endpoint security
- Enforce Policies
- Create a system that allows for the best possible user experience while remaining compliant and ensuring the maximum level of network security.
- Deliver a cost-effective strategy that meets all of their necessary security requirements.
How do You Solve these Challenges?
In order for colleges and universities to deliver a successful and future-proof (scalable) network security strategy they must follow a disruptive, comprehensive approach.
Today's complex and dense campus environments need a network security platform. This platform needs to provide a complete solution combining cloud, endpoint and network aspects (as illustrated below)
This comprehensive, platform based approach will allow you to:
- Unify your policies with your enforcement capabilities across various areas in your environment including endpoints, mobile devices, at the edge and in data centers.
- Detect and prevent known and unknown threats from a central point.
- Support critical security operations such as (MDM, URL filtering, anti-malware, content filtering, anti-virus, threat intelligence, IPS/IDS)
- Support complex data center networks with cutting-edge packet-forwarding
- Defend against network intrusions
- Identify zero-day events
- Thwart future attacks and malware
- Enhance overall network visibility of threats with detailed reporting, providing insights into usage patterns, possible security gaps.
- Lower costs with a smaller more efficient network security footprint
- Encourage the more reliable and secure use of BYOD, SDN and mobile computing
- Secure every area on your campus from mission critical areas such as research labs, administrative buildings and classrooms
- Using advanced role-based access give everyone a unique experience with customized access and permissions.
- Use flexible policies as an alternative to the out-dated "Block all, Allow all" mentality.
Making Smarter Decisions
While it seems easier said than done (in reality it is hard work) colleges and universities need to start making better choices using real-time data, granular analytics and a unified approach to offering secure mobility to it's students, faculty, guests and community.