Facts About Zero Trust Security Models: What You Need To Know

The good old days where data security had defined perimeters are a distant memory. Back then, we only had to worry about external threats, and unquestioned Trust in internal authorities was there. Here are some facts about Zero Trust Security Models that you must be aware of.

But the advancement in technology has made us point fingers at this Trust. Nowadays, our data is stored over cloud services, business over mobile devices has increased, and further working on our own devices has dramatically changed the way of our security model. 

The extinction in perimeters of data has compelled us to embrace a new security model. Here, we define that threat comes from all possible sources, external or internal. Every entity is questioned, checked for authentication, and verified before giving access. This brings us to the “Zero Trust Security Model” age.

Facts About Zero Trust Security Models: What is it? 

Castle-and-moat’s traditional security model works on the maxim “trust but verify.” This considers everything within the network trustworthy and provides them access to all resources, which means that vulnerabilities can move laterally within the organization.

To challenge the loops within the Castle-and-moat model, a Zero Trust Security model comes into force. This model authorizes, authenticates, and verifies everything irrespective of the location and device used. It works on the maxim “never trust, always verify.” It provides data security in cloud frameworks, remote workers, and ransomware viruses.

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The History of Zero Trust Security

In 2010, John Kindervag, an analyst at Forrester Research Inc., realized that data hadn’t specified perimeters. Instead, the need to secure data has increased four-folds. So he presented the concept of Zero Trust Security. After a decade, Google adopted this concept in their network, which marked the fast growth of the Zero Trust Security Model.

What is the need for Zero Trust Security Systems?

The need to secure data through this modern approach has increased with time. The reasons surrounding it are,

The dramatic change in how we pursue our local digital business through remote working has urged businesses to opt for Zero Trust. The data is no longer confined to corporate fortresses and is spread over the network; the security of such data is important.

The security of data policies by renowned regulatory bodies has become strict. You cannot simply lose a customer’s data to a third party and relax. A heavy financial penalty is there for such misapprehension.

The customer-organization Trust is important for the smooth running of the market. This can be increased only if strong measures to secure a customer’s data are taken, strengthening a customer’s trust in the organization.

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Principle of Zero Trust Security

Principle of Zero Trust Security: Facts About Zero Trust Security Models

Let us dig through the root principles on which Zero Trust relies,

  • Micro-segmentation: As the term says, micro-segmentation breaks network security into several smaller sections. This means that separate authentication will be required to access every section of a single network. 
  • Multi-factor authentication (MFA): This is another important principle of Zero Trust that enables a user to provide one or more forms of authentication to access data. You may need to input a password, show a possible possession, or provide retinal or fingerprints identification to ensure Trust.
  • Least privileged: Another important part of Zero Trust is giving the least possible privileges to a device or user. This means that only the data that the user needs must be given to him, keeping other relevant data away from its access. This provides security to confidential information.
  • Device access control: A strict control over which devices can access data, monitoring those devices for authentication, and further keeping an eye to assess the device for compromising. This is quite important to reduce the attack area.
  • Encryption: As every communicating body is a threat to the organization, encrypting data, specifically passwords and personal information, is essential to maintain a Zero Trust posture. To encrypt data, SSL certificates should be incorporated within a website. It provides secured data transfer within a browser, and a server and a third party only see a mix of alphabets and numbers. This mix cannot be deciphered unless the session key is accessed.
  • Preventing lateral movement: Zero Trust has segmented the network and periodic re-establishment of connection. This ensures that even if an attacker enters a network, he cannot move within laterally as authentication is required at every step. Also, the segment where malware is present can be cut off from the leading network, and the area of attack can be diminished.
  • Continuous monitoring: This is the key principle on which Zero Trust relies. Eyes need to be kept on all the users and devices both within and outside the location. Continuous and periodic session time-outs are there to ensure re-verification at every step.

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How to Get Started with Zero Trust Security?

It’s time to gear up and embrace this new security model within your network with these easy steps,

  • Assess your risk: To begin with, first archive your data. Mark the data based on the value and need of protection that it needs. Look for the flow of data within and outside the network.
  • Segregate your network: Next step is to perform segregation. Segregate all the data, the devices, and their location. This eases the process of access management.
  • Configure specific access: Now is the time to define the per user, application, and device role and accessibility. This will ensure a clear and strict understanding of who can access a resource and to what extent.
  • Train your people: Training of staff is of utmost importance. Make sure your people know how to handle the threat of unauthorized access to a resource. If an attacker somehow enters the system, make sure your employees know to cut off that segment from the network and reduce the area of attack.
  • Enforce the least access: Enforce only least-privileged and least-functional access. This means making clear guidelines to ensure that only desired resources are accessible.
  • Use analytics to maintain and monitor your ecosystem: Continuous data monitoring should be there. Your people should monitor and verify who is accessing a resource and what changes are being made. Also, a periodic time-out of the session is necessary.

Closing thoughts 

Tightening information security is needed in the current working scenario of remote workers and dispersed data. However, today as threats can be seen coming from all possible directions, the only policy we are left with is the Zero Trust policy. So, relying on this maxim, “never trust, always verify,” keeps us not only secure, but it reduces the area of attack.

Hope the above-mentioned Facts About Zero Trust Security Models helped you understand the concept better. Keep visiting for more amazing technology facts!

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