Our Blog

Common Network Vulnerabilities and How to Prevent Them

Having a secure network is crucial for protecting a company’s sensitive information and software, but even the most tightly guarded systems are prone to occasional vulnerabilities. These can be detrimental to your business because, if left unattended, they leave room for cyberattacks and software issues to cause data loss. By taking preventative measures, you can ensure internal operations continue running smoothly without fearing an IT catastrophe.

Continue reading to learn more about the most common network vulnerabilities and what your business can do to prevent them from being exploited.

What Are Network Vulnerabilities?

Network vulnerabilities are like chinks in your IT’s armor, allowing external forces to pierce through. These weaknesses in your company’s internal operations, hardware, or software can create windows of opportunities for hackers to steal your information.

Network vulnerabilities come in the form of physical and non-physical risks. Physical vulnerabilities generally involve protecting a server or other vital data-storing equipment behind locked doors. Because these servers hold massive amounts of crucial data and pose a high risk in the wrong hands, they require special credentials to access them. Non-physical vulnerabilities are those things which leave your system susceptible to a digital attack, such as outdated software—essentially any method involving software or data's virtual impact.

Network Vulnerabilities vs. Network Attacks

The differences between network vulnerabilities and network attacks are subtle but important to know.

As previously stated, vulnerabilities are weaknesses in security that makes a network more susceptible to breaches or system errors. They create unwanted opportunities for hackers to penetrate a business’s defenses. Network attacks, on the other hand, are the acts themselves that take advantage of vulnerabilities. These can come in the form of cyberattacks, phishing scams, malware attacks, and more.

Vulnerabilities happen when your network security is not as strong as it could be, leaving your business primed to suffer from a cyberattack.

The Most Frequently Occurring Network Vulnerabilities

It isn’t uncommon to find security vulnerabilities during a network scan—in fact, it’s pretty likely. Technology is constantly advancing, which means there are always new ways that your company’s sensitive information can be obtained by a cyberattack or lost through faulty equipment. Thankfully, reliable security measures are constantly evolving as well, and knowing what the most common network vulnerabilities are can give businesses an advantage.

Poorly Implemented Firewalls

Firewalls are the buffer that protects your network from the internet’s external threats. They are the security gatekeepers determining what is safe to pass through your network and what needs to be blocked as a potential hazard. However, when firewalls aren’t configured correctly, they can allow external threats to slip through the cracks and cause issues for your network.

Firewalls are useful tools that can help maintain secure networks and protect businesses from hacks and cyberattacks. Want to learn more about firewalls and their importance in cybersecurity?

Learn More

Outdated Software

Old and outdated software and hardware are significantly more vulnerable than current technology. Regular updates and patches help keep software safe and impenetrable, but obsolete technology can’t implement the latest changes. Aside from missing out on valuable upgrades, outdated software tends to run slower and be less effective overall.

Internal IT Issues

Aside from regular employees succumbing to social engineering scams, a poorly trained or inexperienced IT team can also make mistakes. Frequently sharing passwords, improper system configuration, and failing to perform regular vulnerability tests can all lead to increased risks for your network. To avoid security issues, internal IT members must possess the skills and knowledge to maintain a tight operation.

Lack of Backups

Having a contingency plan in place for sensitive data and software can come in handy in the event of a disaster. Preparing backups via cloud storage or data centers can save your company time and money when data gets lost or corrupted due to a cyberattack or equipment malfunction. Without being able to rely on backups, there’s no telling how much of your information can be lost or abused.

Unsecure WiFi

When dealing with critical data, it’s necessary to have a secure WiFi network. This prevents unwanted users and devices from coming near your company network. Unsecured WiFi networks are vulnerable to being accessed from external sources, which most companies would rather avoid.

Weak Passwords

Having strong passwords increases your network security. The more complicated and difficult to decrypt, the less chance of a hacker accessing your data. Networks with weak passwords are vulnerable to being infiltrated.

How Network Vulnerability Assessments Can Help

There are network vulnerability assessments for businesses struggling to keep their systems secure. These tests can detect and identify weak spots in your network security. With a detailed assessment report, you can work to improve those areas to better fortify your company data.

The best part about these assessments is that they can be performed by third-party providers. This allows you to maintain constant focus on your primary work goals without stressing about whether or not a cyberattack or system failure is imminent. They help patch up flawed security and increase overall efficiency.

But to undergo penetration tests, you need to find trustworthy security experts.

Let Onward Technology Secure Your Network

Over the years, Onward Technology has provided network vulnerability management services for various industries. Our goal is to create dynamic and well-oiled security networks that protect our clients’ data and take the burden of doing so off their shoulders and into trusted hands. By utilizing a people-first mentality with each and every one of our clients, we’re capable of resolving any IT issues and delivering a positive experience at the same time.

If you want to partner with a company that provides excellent network vulnerability scanning to keep your business safe, Onward Technology is here to help.

© Onward Technology 2023.