If you are looking for cost-effective methods to decrease the ways attackers can exploit security defects and get into your system, there are many benefits to a vulnerability scanner. A vulnerability scanner is a computer program that is designed to search your systems to find weaknesses and loopholes. You can then use this critical information to tighten security on your network and applications, thereby significantly reducing the risk of an attacker being able to break in.
There are two basic reasons to use a vulnerability scanner. The first is to find your security weaknesses. The second is to find the weaknesses in other systems, since hostile programs can be used by attackers to find loopholes in your network and applications. This is why it is extra important that you are running your own vulnerability scans, because anyone trying to break in will likely have the same programs available.
Another benefit of a vulnerability scanner is that it can check your system for known defects to make sure they are patched correctly. It’s all well and good to be up-to-date on your security updates and patches, but having a program that can double check that they are all complete is even more valuable. It can save you resources in both employee time as well as lowering the chance that your company will have to recover from an attacker exploiting a security weakness.
Scanning your system is very cost-effective. For the price of the program, you can have your system mapped out and weaknesses found as well as have solutions offered to plug the holes. For more intensive protection, you may need to hire an IT consultant or have an IT staff member on hand to set up and maintain the scanning program for you. Oftentimes, they are able to focus on programs built to be regularly updated, enabling you to be sure that each time you run the program it has the most recent data on possible threats and how to block them. The programs can also be set to regularly scan your network so that you don’t even have to remember to set it in motion.
While there are many benefits to using a vulnerability scanner, it should just be one weapon in your arsenal. Using your scan in conjunction with a consultation by experts who can review the results is also an important step. The program can give you some great ideas about how to tighten up your loopholes, but in the end, it’s just a program. Having an expert you can call to help you interpret the results and implement a broader plan of action will help keep your network as secure as possible with minimal effect on your bottom line.