Zero trust, NetSec needed for enhanced cyber security

Johannesburg, 13 Mar 2024
Rodney de Koch
Rodney de Koch

In the face of increasingly sophisticated cyber crime, organisations need a comprehensive approach to cyber security, including zero trust for users and applications, real-time threat intelligence and proactive threat detection.

This is according to speakers at an Executive Forum hosted by BCX and Cisco in Johannesburg, in partnership with ITWeb. The topic was "Securing the futureof digital business: Exploring next-gen detection and security solutions."

Rodney de Koch', board advisor, business coach, sales strategist (SaaS) and digital evangelist, noted that South African businesses were under siege, with South Africa recently ranked number one in terms of breaches worldwide.

As part of a multi-pronged approach to reducing risk, de Koch' said: “Few CISOs and security teams have adequate representation at Exco or Board level. There must be awareness from the top down.”

Attendees highlighted growing concern about defending their organisations against cyber attacks harnessing AI and deepfakes, and said they had ongoing challenges in instilling a cyber security culture in their organisations.

De Koch' noted that a combination of human intelligence and cutting edge technology could allow organisations to move from detecting and reacting to threats, to more proactive cyber defence.

Albeauty Mokhudu, Security Sales Specialist at BCX, outlined BCX’s upgraded Threat Defence Centre (TDC) and its comprehensive cyber security solutions and services, offered in partnership with Cisco.

The BCX Secure Open Security architecture covers technology, people and processes across endpoints, workspaces, identity, cloud, networks, OT and IoT and applications, she said.

Nabeel Rajab
Nabeel Rajab

“BCX offers consultancy services, offensive security such as penetration testing and phishing simulations, SOC services, Endpoint security and Network Security as a Service, and incident response services,” she said. “BCX stands between attackers and our customers, partnering with multiple OEMs to put in solutions that add value.”

Nabeel Rajab, cyber security specialist at Cisco, said many organisations faced a visibility and management challenge, as they had a ‘patchwork’ security environment: “Cyber security environments are often multiple solutions stitched together. The problem is that this becomes unmanageable and hard to achieve visibility.”

He highlighted solutions such as the Cisco Security Cloud, deeply entrenched in its Networking Cloud, which offers breach protection, user protection and cloud protection.

Cisco Zero Trust is a strategic approach to security that eliminates trust from an organisation's network architecture, with key solutions such as Cisco Secure Access (roaming users), Cisco DUO (User and Device Trust including Zone based and passwordless MFA), Cisco Secure Workload (application level micro segmentation - previously Titration) and NetSec (Network Security).

Rajab said: “Cisco multi cloud defence allows us to extend zero trust boundaries between users and apps, and between apps themselves. We also enable all cloud environments to ‘talk the same language’, with Generative AI chatbots to help organisations create and optimise their security environments,” he said. He highlighted Cisco XDR, which offers visibility at every touchpoint, analyses events and identifies patterns. “We monitor over 650 billion events a day, using ML and AI to automate our analysis,” he said. “We become your first line SOC and automate menial tasks.”