Computerworld - There are two approaches to network vulnerability scanning, active and passive. The active approach encompasses everything an organization does to foil system breaches, while the passive (or monitoring) approach entails all the ways the organization oversees system security. When making buying decisions for your organization, it's a mistake to think that you have to choose between the two types of protection.
The passive approach allows security personnel to monitor which operating systems are in use; what is being sent to, from and within the system; which services are available; and where parts of the system may be vulnerable to security threats. The active approach, on the other hand, offers much information about system and application vulnerabilities.
Active scanning tools are used where constant vigilance is required. They have a specific area of focus that the product is programmed to monitor. (And they are sometimes configured to prevent particular situations as well, such as the use of USB key chains on a network.) Their core monitoring functionality is generally very rigid and can't be easily customized or extended.
When an organization uses the passive approach in scanning its LAN, the information obtained will normally include data pertaining to the hosts in the network -- which ports are open, which software versions are being maintained and which services are running.
There is a huge potential with passive analysis because it allows you to assess the vulnerability of your software without interfering with the client or server. This technology facilitates IT asset management, since it allows an IT manager to instantly get a list of which users are running vulnerable copies of certain software programs.
When combined with passive vulnerability scanning, an active scan can help provide a more complete picture of the software load-out on client-side systems, as well as on servers. In short, the two types of scanners complement each other.
When it comes to selecting the right passive scanning product for your organization, there is no shortage of options. Tenable Network Security, for example, offers a product called NeVO. The NeVO vulnerability monitor can determine what's happening on your network without having to actively scan it. NeVO runs 24/7 and helps uncover whether any new hosts, ports, services or vulnerabilities have suddenly appeared since the last active scan of the network was performed. Although NeVO uses its own pattern matching and signature language to detect potential threats, Tenable does publish new NeVO signatures regularly, allowing you to easily keep this product up to date.
Guardian Digital's flagship operating platform, EnGarde Secure Linux, is another example of a
- Troubleshooting Common Issues in VoIP Learn more about Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP), including common VoIP metrics used, best practices in VoIP management and tips and tricks for...
- 2013 Network Management Software (NMS) Buyers Guide This white paper contains an independent comparison study of six different network management solutions and provides guidance on how you can choose the...
- Rightsizing Your Network Performance Management Solution: 4 Case Studies This white paper discusses challenges encountered as organizations search for the most cost-effective network performance management solution.
- Global Growing Pains: Tapping into B2B Integration Services to Overcome Global Expansion Challenges A recent survey by IDG Research explored both the challenges and pain points companies face when growing globally, as well as the capabilities...
- E-Signature RFP Checklist Webcast If your organization is looking to adopt e-signatures, you may be overwhelmed by the number of providers that offer seemingly similar solutions. How...
- Cloud and Collaboration: Driving Your Business Value Mission Critical Cloud from Peer 1 Hosting is enterprise-grade. All Security White Papers | Webcasts
Our new bimonthly Internet of Things newsletter helps you keep pace with the rapidly evolving technologies, trends and developments related to the IoT. Subscribe now and stay up to date!