The 10 Essential Cyber Security Tools to Enhance Your Privacy
Although the entire idea of cybersecurity seems overwhelming to most people, it is vital to understand its importance to virtual data protection.
Namely, most of our sensitive information is stored online, and with the help of some black hacking tricks, it can easily become available to individuals who’re not supposed to see it.
Cybersecurity is especially critical to businesses since they keep their clients’ personal data, which can bring severe financial consequences to companies in case it becomes compromised.
Therefore, companies should hire a professional cybersecurity analyst who’ll take care of their virtual environment by using the most advanced cyber security software tools, which can be quite helpful in detecting even the smallest detail inside the network.
The following cyber security tools list will provide you with the 10 best network protection solutions that will ensure a safe digital environment for every user.
The 5 Most Important Network Security Tools and Services
Before we jump into the actual cyber security tools examples, we should mention the 5 inevitable security software essential for both home users and companies.
Every device that has Internet access must be protected with a firewall. It will monitor the network traffic and block any unauthorized access to your system, which is why it’s considered the most vital source of protection, even though many users find it outdated.
A firewall has certain limitations, just like other software programs. Still, we shouldn’t deny its efficiency – apart from tracking the network connection, it monitors the connection attempts and decides whether these should or shouldn’t pass freely to your computer.
Firewalls are critical for both home and business purposes.
Firewall and trusted antivirus software are key to a successful defense. While firewall monitors the Internet connection and blocks unauthorized access to your system, antivirus protects you from any threat or malware that could jeopardize your safety.
Antivirus software identifies and blocks any suspicious files that enter your system, and most of the new programs offer email scans, quarantining potential threats, removing the malware, as well as many other protective measures that give outstanding results in resolving security issues.
Like a firewall, both home users and companies should implement antivirus software based on their purposes.
3. Password Manager Software
Passwords have always been one of the most vulnerable protection measures, mostly because people usually create passwords that are easy to crack (birthdays, pet names, 123456789, etc.).
Still, the invention of password manager software has brought the possibility to generate strong, random, and practically unbreakable passwords that will work for every website you visit. The best of all, you won’t have to remember it!
There is a broad range of password manager programs, and each of them gets the job done – of course, business users should go for paid versions that bring more features, and home users can take advantage of the free ones, which provide the basic functions.
4. Penetration Testing
Penetration testing is a process done by cybersecurity professionals who use the same techniques as black-hat hackers to enter the system and detect potential vulnerabilities and weaknesses that could open the door to the most sophisticated cyberattacks.
They will try to simulate the attacks such as passwords cracking, phishing, and code injection, which are the most severe level of cybercrime aimed at companies, monitoring the system’s activity and protection ability.
Once the research is done, the testers will present to you their findings and observations. They will also recommend potential changes to your system that could enhance the overall network security. The implementation of such security tools is necessary for organizations and business purposes in general.
5. Staff Training
This final factor is specifically aimed at companies and small businesses, which must be aware of the importance of knowledgeable, well-trained staff.
That said, there are many security tools that you can invest in to train your staff and raise their awareness about the importance of cybersecurity. These can be, for example, regular updates on cybersecurity strategies, learning about the right habits with passwords, providing training sessions and simulations, etc.
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What are the 10 Best Cyber Security Tools?
Apart from the fundamental security tools we’ve just mentioned, there are many other options that bring an extra layer of privacy to your network and system. Each of the following examples is aimed at more or less different security concepts, but they all have the same goal – protecting you from malicious activities and hacking attempts!
1. Nessus – The Best of Cyber Security Assessment Tools
The best way to protect your network is to check for potential vulnerabilities that exist within the network configuration. That said, it’s not rare that organizations mistakenly put in the wrong patch or improperly configure security settings, but thanks to Nessus, all the errors will be detected and corrected.
Nessus is the software developed by Tenable, and it has proven its efficiency in vulnerability assessment. That said, Nessus identifies and fixes missing and incomplete patches, software bugs, or general misconfiguration of apps, devices, or operating systems.
So far, Nessus has found more than 100 zero-day attacks and developed more than 130.000 plugins, updated regularly, and in real-time.
Nessus is available in both free and paid versions ($2.390/year). A free version is suitable for educators, students, and individuals who’re starting their cybersecurity career, while the Nessus Pro is an ideal solution for Pen Testers, Consultants, Security Practitioners, and Vulnerability Managers for organizations of all sizes. There is also a Free Trial available.
The website URL: https://www.tenable.com/products/nessus.
2. Rapid7 Nexpose – The Best of Cyber Security Risk Assessment Tools
Rapid7 Nexpose is another top-class vulnerability detection tool, which encompasses the entire range of scans, making sure it handles discovery, detection, verification, risk assessment, impact analysis, mitigation, and reporting.
It’s got a web-based interface used for communication between the user and the app. It provides a real-time view of risk, which means that you’ll get regular reports about your network status. After it’s done an in-depth analysis, Nexpose will tell you on which vulnerabilities you should focus first – better said, it will prioritize the vulnerabilities by their risk scores.
Nexpose comes in both free and premium packages ($2.000/year), where the free one comes with reduced features. Still, you can download a Free Trial and check out the product before making a final purchase.
The website URL: https://www.rapid7.com/products/nexpose/.
3. Nagios – The Best of Cyber Security Monitoring Tools
Nagios is a well-known name in traffic monitoring since it provides a wide range of monitoring options, including Windows Monitoring, Linux Monitoring, Server Monitoring, App Monitoring, SNMP (Simple Network Management Protocol) Monitoring, and Log Monitoring.
When it comes to network monitoring, Nagios offers an open-source platform that analyzes the network, searching for potential problems caused by overloaded data links and network connections. Besides, it provides control of the routers, switches, as well as the availability and response time of every node on the network.
In addition to the open-source platform, which is available to anyone, Nagios offers paid plans whose prices depend on a particular package you choose. That being said, you can expect to pay from $1.995 to $14.995 per year.
The website URL: https://www.nagios.com/.
4. PortSwigger’s Burp Suite – The Best of Cyber Security Testing Tools
Burp Suite, offered by PortSwigger, is a well-known global leader that regularly combats the cybercrime.
Burp Suite comes in three packages – Community (Free), Professional ($399/user/year), and Enterprise (From $3.999/year). The community plan lacks some features included in the paid plans, but it’s suitable for beginners.
The website URL: https://portswigger.net/burp.
5. Metasploit – The Best of Network Security Tools for Penetration Testing
Regular penetration tests are essential for every company that needs to make sure its systems are ready to deal with the sophisticated cyberattacks. And Metasploit can help with that.
Metasploit is explicitly created for security teams who need to verify vulnerabilities, manage security assessments, and raise awareness about cybersecurity within their organizations. It comes with a variety of exploitable vulnerability scripts that allow pen testers to assess the procedure completely and accurately.
Metasploit is generally free, but there is also a Metasploit Pro version available, and it starts at $2.000 and $5.000.
The website URL: https://www.metasploit.com/.
6. Netwrix – The Best of Network Security Audit Tools
Netwrix is one of the free network security tools that helps IT personnel and IT auditors maintain their network infrastructure and get fast and accurate insights into its configuration.
Netwrix allows you to monitor network devices for configuration changes and login attempts, detects the threats before they manage to make modifications in your network, and facilitates the ability of hardware failure detection, which means that you can do quick troubleshooting of network traffic issues.
This is one of the best network security monitoring tools because it sends daily reports that contain valuable information about the important events that occurred in the last 24 hours, which makes it easier for you to make your next move.
Like most of its competitors, Netwrix also offers two types of subscriptions – Netwrix Auditor Free Community Edition and Netwrix Auditor Standard Edition, whose price is not provided by the vendor, but you’ll need to contact them directly and ask for the available plans.
The website URL: https://www.netwrix.com/network_device_audit.html.
7. Tor – The Best of Network Security Software Tools for Encryption
Although Tor used to be associated with the dark web and malicious purposes, it’s mostly used to ensure privacy while searching the Internet.
The fact that the Internet and websites track our online activity is quite intimidating, which is why developers came up with an idea of creating a browser that would hide our data, preventing it from being exposed to bots and even hackers who may stand behind the sites that seem harmless.
That said, The Tor Project is mostly used by cybersecurity departments, companies, and individuals who want to ensure their anonymity while browsing. Namely, Tor blocks third-party trackers, prevents someone from watching your connection, makes all the users look the same, provides top-notch encryption, and allows you to visit sites that may have been blocked in your country.
As you may assume, Tor is more suitable for home users than companies, but it can still be a powerful weapon against trackers and identity theft. Also, it’s entirely free of charge.
The website URL: https://www.torproject.org/.
8. Kismet – The Best of Network Security Devices and Tools for Wireless LAN
Despite its continual development and updates, the wireless network is still prone to vulnerabilities – that said, most of the cyber attacks occur due to unprotected or poorly protected Wi-Fi networks that require further check and configuration.
With Kismet, a wireless network and device detector, you’ll be able to inspect your Wi-Fi and find potential weaknesses that could cause a severe data breach. Kismet also comes with IDS (Intrusion Detection System), which helps you monitor your network and find any malicious activity that could affect your privacy, including active sniffing programs that spy on your network.
Thanks to its numerous features that allow you to detect the presence of wireless access points and clients without sending any loggable packet, Kismet is the most used open-source network monitoring tool we know today, despite the lack of some critical options for Windows OS.
The website URL: https://www.kismetwireless.net/.
9. Argus – The Best of Free Cyber Security Tools for Network Traffic Analysis
Even though it doesn’t give an impression of the acronym, each letter of the word ‘Argus’ stands for one part of the entire meaning – Audit Record Generation and Utilization System.
Accordingly, this security tool provides efficient and comprehensive network analysis and detailed reporting after each assessment, providing a solid foundation for cybersecurity strategies you may implement in the future.
10. Forcepoint NGFW – The Best of Networking Security Tools for Cyberattacks Prevention
Forcepoint is presented as a next-generation firewall, which means that it provides some more advanced functions in terms of a safe network environment.
With Forcepoint, you’ll be protected from accessing certain types of content that could be malicious, and most of intrusion attempts and exploits will be blocked. The console is mainly designed for organizations that work in the cloud because its power lies in preventing and providing warnings about risky cloud servers, making sure the cloud environment is a safe place to do business.
Apart from the more or less basic functions regarding network security analysis, Forcepoint offers a quick response to incidents and sophisticated defense of networks against malware and exploits – that said, it truly is a next-gen firewall solution.
As for the price, you’ll need to contact the Forcepoint representative and ask for further information. Also, you can schedule a demo and request a free trial before purchasing a product.
The website URL: https://www.forcepoint.com/product/ngfw-next-generation-firewall.
The line between cyber security tools and hacking software is thin, but even some blackish techniques used for ethical purposes can be quite helpful, as we could see with pen-testing tools.
Overall, the mentioned programs will give you an insight into weaknesses and vulnerabilities that exist in your network, and that could be a free pass for hackers and their despicable purposes. By knowing them, you can successfully prevent the damage that can cost your company money and reputation.