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Operations technology

In addition to enforcement technologies, security systems must be administered, monitored, and maintained. Figure 1–4 shows your enterprise with the addition of video cameras to alert you to problems and give you the information necessary to manage those problems.

Figure 1–4 Operations technology helps monitor and administer your network.

User Administration. Most organizations use the tools delivered with each type of computer to add user accounts to each computer or to all of the computers of that type. In large organizations, that may result in hundreds of actions needed to add or delete the accounts associated with a single employee. Many organizations, lacking a central control mechanism, simply leave accounts in place after an employee has left the company. This results in a huge security risk. Some employees are unhappy when they leave. Others become unhappy after they leave. Former employees pay little attention to keeping information, such as passwords, secret.

Intrusion Detection. It sounds obvious that, if you are not looking for intruders, you are unlikely to see any that trespass on your computer systems. Unfortunately, most computer security failures remain undetected for long periods of time—some forever. Intrusion detection tools let you know when something suspicious is going on. Chapter 8, "Intrusion Detection," addresses intrusion detection.

Vulnerability Scanners. Any computer can be configured to secure or insecure. Simple changes while a computer is in production may compromise the security of the computer unintentionally (or intentionally). Scanners investigate the configuration of your computers and tell you whether any security holes have been opened. Chapter 6, "Vulnerability Scanners," provides more information on vulnerability scanners.

Virus Controls. A virus is a computer program that was designed to (1) move rapidly into many computers and (2) typically do some damage. The rapid movement from one computer to many of the computers to which one is connected is the behavior that caused these programs to be compared with viruses. The damage they do may vary from trivial to very serious. Controlling them requires a multipart antivirus strategy. Virus scanners are discussed in Chapter 7, "Virus Detection and Content Filters."

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