Demystifying Zero-Trust and its role in Cybersecurity

When you use the term zero-trust in your organization, it means you do not want to trust anything but want to verify everything. The said concept is relatively newin the corporate world as it was introduced by John Kindervag, a Forrester Research-based analyst, in 2010.

As per this principle, organizations or companies, whether large or small, should take all the necessary steps to safeguard all of their resources, including apps, corporate networks, official devices, etc. Besides, they should assume every network connection as suspicious by default.

Continue reading this post to discover what a zero-trust model is all about and why it is considered as a useful cybersecurity policy by organizations in 2021.

Read: Application of MITRE Framework in Enterprise Cyber Security

What is Zero Trust?

As far as the Zero-Trust approach is concerned, companies do not need to trust anything inside or outside their infrastructures and networks.

Apart from this, organizations should continuously monitor, track, and audit every aspect of their corporate networks, including IT infrastructures throughout the year.

Furthermore, companies should give privileged access to users who need it to perform their official tasks or jobs properly. This concept suggests that organizations can easily keep an eye on all the users’ activities, including privileged users.

Why should Zero-Trust be a part of cybersecurity policy for organizations in 2021?

During the last couple of years or so, the concept of traditional network perimeter for most organizations has changed a lot. As we live in the post-covid-19 era, remote working has become a reality.

Read: Cyber security awareness for silver surfers: How to stay safe online

As a result, different elements like employees’ personal devices, cloud platforms and other resources have been included under the umbrella of the corporate network.

Therefore, every individual no matter if he or she belongs to higher management or support staff must be verified thoroughly before giving him or her privileged access.

This way, organizations can constantly monitor such privileged connections to safeguard them against various internal and external threats like information leakage, social engineering, malicious cyberattacks, hacking, data theft, etc.

For instance, Australia is included in the list of countries that have experienced a series of cyber attacks in the recent past. According to a recent study, 9 out of 10 IT executives in Australia have reported that their organizations have witnessed a considerable rise in terms of cyber attacks during 2019.

Therefore, it is high time that Australian businesses need to be serious about the application of Zero-Trust security framework in 2021. For that reason, they can use multi-factor authentication (MFA) mechanism that is considered as a core element of Zero-Trust model.

The multi-factor authentication (MFA) mechanism authenticates users once they have provided multiple credentials to validate their access. Besides, they should include the Zero-Trust model in their cybersecurity policies to secure their users’ connection from these above-mentioned threats like information leakage, social engineering, data theft, etc.

By doing so, they can appropriately overcome remote access and other corporate risks that can harm their online presence a great deal.

Read: The Biggest Cybersecurity Threats For 2023

Basic elements of Zero Trust model

The application of a Zero-Trust model is simple. If organizations want to discover how this cybersecurity model works in their favor, they should understand its four main elements first. These elements are:

  • Always identify
  • Always control
  • Always analyze
  • Always control

Always Identify

When it comes to verifying users’ identity, organizations should depend on a single identity source always. For instance, they can use a Single Sign On (SSO) mechanism along with multi-factor authentication to improve their existing users’ identity verification process to the next level.

Read: How to write a comprehensive App security strategy

Always control

Organizations or companies need to apply proper security checks and controls as and when needed. Similarly, they must focus on limiting their users’ access and give them minimal access that helps them perform their jobs accordingly.

Always analyze

The third core element of a Zero-Trust model discusses the importance of authentication checks in detail. According to this component, companies must investigate authentications in a proper way to ensure that they are trustworthy.

Surprisingly, hackers or other cybercriminals have become smart these days so they can easily access valid credentials of any user anytime. Thus, they can access corporate networks by hiding their actual identity behind these credentials.

For that purpose, they can take advantage of corporate security tools like security management and event management (SIEM) and endpoint detection and response (EDR).

Always Secure

Lastly, the fourth element of the Zero-trust approach emphasizes that organizations must focus on the proper implementation of all the cybersecurity steps and procedures within their premises.

Consequently, they can protect all their crucial official resources such as customers’ data, applications, cloud platforms, corporate devices, etc from serious cyber threats in the near future.

Advantages of applying Zero Trust Model in your company

The good thing about the zero-trust model is that it helps you overcome firewalls and perimeter-based security limitations for networks timely. Apart from this, it allows companies to verify users’ credentials within their networks regularly.

In addition to this, organizations can safeguard their targeted systems using the zero trust model. Above all, it enables a company to protect its app, its data, and the whole related process from hackers and other cyber goons’ prying eyes.

Read: What You Need to Know About DDoS Attacks

In short, a Zero-Trust model is a template that allows businesses, organizations, and companies to reduce internal and external threats by perceiving all the users as a potential data breach that can happen at anytime.

Wrapping Things Up

When you implement a zero-trust model in your organization, you can easily improve your organization’s online presence to a new plane. According to this model, every user or device that tries to connect with the network must be properly authenticated.

Overall, a zero-trust model has all the right ingredients to set new cybersecurity standards for organizations or companies in the coming years.

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