E-Handbook:

Can holistic cybersecurity deliver the needed protection?

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'Holistic' security can create a defense posture full of holes

Modern organizations face a seemingly endless number of cyberthreats to what can seem like an overwhelming number of entry points. It's no wonder that a holistic cybersecurity strategy, where physical and virtual security processes are integrated under one umbrella, has become so enticing to cybersecurity leaders. Under a holistic cybersecurity strategy, all the elements that require protection in an organization -- people, computers, networks, buildings and property -- are considered to be part of one interconnected system.

The ultimate goal is continuous protection across all attack surfaces. This integration of different levels and types of security is designed to develop a comprehensive understanding of vulnerabilities in order to create well-balanced protection against a variety of threats. In their efforts to capitalize on this, network management vendors are offering tools that promise this holistic approach to network security that monitors and evaluates companywide networks and data in one program. But while holistic monitoring seems like a streamlined, cost-effective solution, the elimination of several levels of security when turning to a stand-alone management system can leave networks exposed.

This guide aims to help security leaders decide whether the holistic cybersecurity approach will actually provide continuous monitoring of their organization's physical and virtual infrastructure. As companies are quickly learning, a holistic approach to cybersecurity can save resources and provide continuous security monitoring that is invaluable to modern business. But if not implemented carefully, "holistic" security can leave holes that create more organizational risk.

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