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What Are Network Access Control Or NAC Solutions?

Network access control solutions protect your organization from the risk of shadow devices. Employees can bring their devices to work without registering them under the company’s BYOD policy, and IT teams may forget about these devices running after testing. These shadow devices are connected to the network but are not managed or monitored. Network access control (NAC) solutions can prevent unauthorized devices from connecting to the web and detect any existing unauthorized devices.

Defining NAC Policies

Defining network access control policies (NAC) involves governing how devices and users can access the network. These control measures are essential to protect an organization’s network against unauthorized access. However, the benefits of NAC extend far beyond network security. Using NAC, you can implement work-from-home policies and BYOD policies, which allow employees to use their own devices while on the job. These policies help protect the company’s network by ensuring that the owner authorizes BYOD devices.

NAC can prevent unauthorized access to the network by providing visibility into devices on the web. NAC can also prevent malware and cyber attacks by automating device tracking. It also helps prevent financial loss from unauthorized access. With NAC, you can restrict unauthorized devices from joining and prevent them from accessing your network. Therefore, it is critical to use a comprehensive NAC solution. Defining network access control policies help you maintain network security and provide a better user experience.

NAC policies are applied before a device can access the network. Any device that fails to meet the conditions of the policy will not be allowed access. Most NAC implementations use this method. However, you can also use post-admission control. This approach is more advanced and is often used to manage authentication after devices have accessed the network. A post-admission policy is a good option if you need to monitor suspicious traffic, detect incompliant devices, or upgrade your existing policies.

Monitoring Suspicious Network Activity

NAC solutions can monitor suspicious network activity. These solutions will prevent unauthorized users and devices from gaining access to sensitive resources. They also help prevent malware from infiltrating networks. Traditionally, NAC solutions have been used to manage endpoints, but with the rise of BYOD policies and IoT devices, the security risks of NAC solutions have grown considerably. Using these solutions, IT administrators can monitor network activity and isolate suspicious devices.

The benefits of network access control solutions are many. First, they provide network visibility for administrators, enabling them to detect and proactively address issues that might pose a risk. These solutions can also help organizations meet HIPAA, NIST, SOX, and PCI-DSS standards. In addition, they can help organizations meet compliance standards, bringing security policies into compliance with regulatory standards. This means that network administrators don’t have to spend their time manually monitoring every activity on a network.

The key benefits of network access control solutions are their flexible and scalable architecture. Administrators can add or remove rules to monitor network activity using a policy-based model. In addition, administrators can quickly update and add policies for tens of thousands of devices. This flexibility is essential for organizations with a high number of network accesses. These solutions also enable administrators to isolate unpatched devices. Finally, these security solutions offer an advanced level of security to protect their networks from attackers.

Implementing NAC Policies for IoT Devices

Implementing network access control or NAC policies to protect IoT devices is a complex task. While NAC effectively controls a known set of devices, it does not work well for unmanaged devices. These devices are often agentless, not connected to the corporate network, and passwords may not be sufficient. More sophisticated NAC solutions perform device fingerprinting to confirm that a device is who it claims to be.

A next-generation NAC solution will enforce policies that control the resources, activities, and services each device can access. These policies must be granular enough to allow only those devices that require minimal access. This is particularly important for IoT devices that use sensitive medical data. Using an NAC solution for IoT devices can protect networks and ensure that sensitive data remains secure.

While the Internet of Things devices can bring many benefits to businesses, they are also a prime target for cybercriminals. Implementing network access control or NAC policies for IoT devices will help protect corporate assets while limiting the access privileges of non-employees and guests. In addition, implementing NAC will also help manage inventory and ensure that devices are being controlled.

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