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Ethernet security – How it can protect your business

Businesses today face an ever-increasing set of cyber threats. Find out how to keep yours safe with Ethernet leased line.

According to a press release from, two-thirds of large UK businesses were hit by cyber breaches or attacks in 2016. The growing threat of cyber-attacks, combined with growing reliance upon the use of the internet and cloud services, means that it’s increasingly important to take network security seriously. Despite these threats, the Cyber Security Breaches Survey found that only half of all firms have taken any recommended actions to identify and address vulnerabilities.

It’s imperative that businesses take measures to protect all of their desktop and mobile systems; the so-called endpoints. This means having up to date security software. It also means ensuring that all operating systems are current and fully patched. The recent WannaCry attack that made the headlines only affected out of date versions of Windows. But businesses also need to think about protecting their data where it’s stored and when it’s moving around between systems. One of the ways of doing this is to review how their business connects to the internet.

Ethernet security

How big is the risk to your data? To be honest, most corporate information is not that sensitive. While your data would undoubtedly be useful to your competitors, they’re unlikely to risk breaking the law by hacking into your systems. When using the internet, however, there’s always a risk that your data could fall into the wrong hands so having an encrypted protocol when it comes to sensitive information is vital. With the new GDPR legislation on the way, failure to adequately protect personal data could lead to large penalties for companies, so it’s important to take network security measures seriously.

By default, data carried over ethernet leased lines is not encrypted. However, because the circuit is private and exclusively for your use, there’s less chance of information being intercepted. Tapping into a leased line is something that’s too difficult for all but the most dedicated of hackers to attempt. But this doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t take other measures to protect your information, such as using encrypted protocol.

If you’re using Ethernet to link your business sites, you can enhance Ethernet security further by encrypting data before it’s transmitted, ensuring that even if it is intercepted it’s of no use to anyone. A further measure you can take in addition to leased line data encryption is to use virtual private network (VPN) technology to secure your connection to the internet. This has the effect of putting your internet traffic in a private ‘tunnel’ so that it can’t be intercepted. It can be used on broadband services too, so it’s a useful method of ensuring that remote offices and home workers are able to access your central business systems safely.

Of course, a leased line won’t help you to protect against malicious activities such as phishing, where social engineering techniques are used to try to trick employees into revealing their credentials. The only real solution to this is to ensure that your staff are aware of the risks and don’t get caught out.

Other Ethernet advantages

Other than helping you to be more secure, what other reasons are there as to why a leased line is likely to be a better choice for your business? Let’s be honest, for the smallest businesses it may not be, but once you have a few employees using your systems, or you have more than one location to serve, or you’re heavily dependent on cloud-based services, then a leased line starts to look like a far more attractive proposition.

A leased line is synchronous so there are no barriers to uploading information and you won’t have frustrating wait times to upload large files. It will also be able to deliver better connection speeds at all times of day, so you’ll have no concerns about slowdowns if you’re working outside normal office hours or at busy periods. If you’re using the cloud either to store data or to run systems – whether office systems or business packages – then you most definitely need a reliable connection. Should you be unable to access your systems then you’re going to be losing trade and losing money.

If your business has several different sites relying for their computing needs on a central data centre then Ethernet also makes a lot of sense. The asynchronous nature of the connection makes it easier and quicker to transfer large files around between your sites, and it will be better for data-hungry cloud applications. It’s also good for internet-based communication such as video calling and VoIP phone calls which are increasingly popular especially if you need to communicate overseas.

You need to consider the reliability of the line too. Because Ethernet services are more business focused than broadband, they tend to come with guaranteed levels of service. The support is also designed to recognise that the service is essential for your business and that you need to get up and running again quickly in the event of a problem. Compare various types of commercial ethernet leased lines deals.

To read more from the press release on cybersecurity and the Cyber Security Breaches survey, click here.

If you’d like to find out more about the Ethernet options available, get in touch online today.