Difference between Cyber Security and Network Security

In recent times, cybersecurity has gained a lot of traction. Today almost everyone has access to the Internet. The Internet has played a major role in revolutionizing the 21st century. Most people spend a lot of time on the Internet than they did a decade ago.

From paying our electricity bills to video conferencing with a person who is sitting far away, we have overly become dependent on the Internet. This over-dependence has opened doors to various security vulnerabilities that pose significant threats. The criminal activities being committed online are increasing day by day.

So, we must take some strict security measures to protect the confidentiality, integrity, and availability of internet users. That’s where cybersecurity and network security come into the picture.

Difference between Cyber Security and Network Security

Now, often one gets confused about cybersecurity and network security. Let us look at a simple example to understand the difference between the two. Suppose an organization has multiple PCs in which confidential data is stored. These computers can communicate with each other over the network.

Cyber Security helps in protecting the organization’s computers, networks, and confidential data from various attacks or any unauthorized access, whereas Network Security usually focuses on securing the networks and maintaining the integrity of data being transferred over the network. Hence, we can conclude that network security is a subset of cybersecurity.

Let us look at a simple Venn diagram to visualize this.

Difference between Cyber Security and Network Security

1. Cybersecurity is the practice of protecting computer devices and networks from various attacks, whereas network security usually involves the protection of confidential files and documents in a network of computers against various attacks. It involves protecting the integrity of the network and various network resources from unauthorized access. So network security is a subset of cybersecurity.

2. Let us consider an organization as a castle with high walls. Cybersecurity is primarily more concerned with threats from outside the castle, whereas network security is much more concerned about what is going on within the castle walls.

3. Software updates, multi-factor authentication, encryption, internet access, secure wifi, strict password policies fall under network security whereas cybersecurity is a much broader term that includes website authentication, securing confidential data, applications, up-to-date information, etc.

4. Cybersecurity focuses on protecting the entire digital data present in an organization whereas network security focuses only on protecting transmit data.

Cyber Security vs Network Security

The difference between cybersecurity and network security is summarised in the following table.

Cyber Security Network Security
Cybersecurity is the practice of protecting computer devices and networks from various attacks. Network security usually involves the protection of confidential files and documents in a network of computers against various attacks.
It is a subset of information security. It is a subset of cybersecurity.
It focuses on protecting the entire digital data. It focuses only on protecting the transmit data.
Website authentication, securing confidential data, applications, up-to-date information, etc. fall under cybersecurity. Software updates, multi-factor authentication, encryption, internet access, secure wifi, strict password policies fall under network security.
It mainly deals with attacks in the cyber realm. It mainly deals with attacks in the network realm.

What is Cyber Security?

Cybersecurity is an important term related to the elements of cyberspace. It deals with protecting the integrity of various devices, networks, programs from any unauthorized access and various cyber-attacks. Various techniques, procedures, and technologies are designed to achieve cybersecurity.

Many protocols and security measures are also set up to protect the integrity of networks while monitoring all the incoming and outgoing traffic. The cybersecurity professionals try their level best to achieve the CIA triad i.e. confidentiality, integrity, and availability.

Some of the tools which can be taken to achieve cybersecurity are Bitdefender, Mimecast, Snort, Cis, VMware Secure State, etc.

What is Network Security?

Network security is a subset of cybersecurity which deals with the implementation of various security measures to protect the integrity of computer networks. These days many threats such as Trojan horses, viruses, worms, spyware, ransomware, etc. have become common on the Internet.

To protect a computer from such threats various security measures like firewalls, encryption, backup measures are implemented under network security. In simple words, Network Security only focuses on the Network and its security.

Some security practices like software updates, multi-factor authentication, encryption, internet access, secure wifi, strict password policies fall under network security.

The network security professionals implement various hardware and software necessary to guard the systems. Some of the tools which can be used to achieve network security are Argus, Burp Suite, N-map, Wireshark, etc.

Author
Riten Bhagra
VIT, Bhopal

References

1. http://www.differencebetween.net/technology/difference-between-cyber-security-and-network-security/
2. https://www.ssi-net.com/the-difference-between-cyber-security-computer-security-and-network-security/
3. https://blog.newcloudnetworks.com/information-security-vs-cybersecurity-vs-network-security-are-they-the-same
4. https://www.secureworks.com/blog/cybersecurity-vs-network-security-vs-information-security
5. https://onlinedegrees.sandiego.edu/cyber-security-information-security-network-security/
6. http://www.differencebetween.net/technology/difference-between-cyber-security-and-network-security/
7. https://www.researchgate.net/post/Network_Security_vs_Information_Security
8. https://www.geeksforgeeks.org/difference-between-network-security-and-cyber-security/

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