Isolation is one of the latest online security techniques that focus on threat separation instead of blocking access to computer systems. This approach allows users to click links within phishing emails or open malicious websites. No matter how many times they visit, they can never worry about malware or virus attacks.
It is a modern foundation of computer networks that allows resilience to various attacks. Through isolation, hackers and cyber criminals are barred from accessing computer systems, applications, or data. The approach puts the isolated application inside an isolating container and thus avoids system or data damage due to attacks.
Why is network isolation necessary?
Most cyberattacks rely on system vulnerabilities in different computer systems. The hackers are opportunists who keep finding flaws in websites so that they can add their codes to help them bypass security protocols. They may install malicious software or copy information and paste it into their computers.
This is why advanced browser security is a crucial consideration for any internet user. Organizations need browser isolation technology due to several reasons.
- The dangers of web browsing – Websites are the most used in network access.
- The need for increased productivity – Any type of attack leads to reduced productivity and losses.
- The user interface has enormous numbers of users who access many other links and programs, which increases attack possibilities.
There are different types of cyberattacks:
- Malware attacks: Attackers install malicious software into the computer system. The types of software can be Trojans, worms, ransomware, or spyware. They can either block the system, steal data, or display unwanted ads.
- Phishing: This is an impersonating attack where cybercriminals send malicious emails that look real. Once the target opens the email or link, the attacker gains access to the target’s data immediately.
- Denial of service: This is an attack that overwhelms the system making it slow. These attacks may target business competitors in a bid to gain the competitor’s clients.
- Man-in-the-middle attacks: An attacker sandwiches themselves between the system and the client. They then hijack communication, but the target continues to think they are communicating with the right company.
Details by Statista show malware attacks in the first half of 2022 were more than 2.8 billion. 2021 recorded about 5.4 billion malware attacks. Another report by APWG Phishing Trends shows the total number of phishing attacks in December 2021 was 300,000. In 2021, the Internet Crime Report recorded 19,954 BECs and EACs complaints. The losses incurred were almost $2.4 billion. Due to increased attacks, companies are learning how to troubleshoot internet issues to identify possible threats. As a result, Denial of Service attacks dropped by 13.72% in the 2nd quarter of 2022.
Cyber-attacks happen due to three main reasons.
- Computer network vulnerabilities: Attackers look for weak points in networks and take full advantage.
- Not securing online access: Many tools enhance access to accounts. Unfortunately, a lot of users do not pay much attention to it. Research shows that 71% of people use the same password for multiple accounts. Over 23 million users use “123456” as a password.
- Lack of knowledge of online risks: Many users lack knowledge of online security. Due to this, they never assess their accounts for security resilience.
Isolation-based security techniques
The top isolation solutions are cloud-based and do not need extra plugins to work. The technology keeps browsers safe and erases all actions after use to ensure high-value privacy and security. Isolation works with any type of device so that the end gains a seamless experience. It separates every threat but does not negatively affect productivity. Organizations use two main types of browser isolation.
- Local isolation: This isolation is done on the specific user device using a sandbox or virtual machine.
- Remote isolation: This isolation is done through a remote server which moves all browsing activities to remote environments. Users only access real-time activities from the server, which can either be located on-premise or cloud.
Organizations are more concerned today with unsafe browsing due to the dangers it poses. A Gartner report shows that 25% of companies will adopt browser isolation before the end of 2022. When isolation is implemented, it blocks threats and bypasses several other activities.
It lets you block threats through eight important techniques.
- Content isolation: This technique blocks all content that looks suspicious or is proven malicious. The content passes through the browser isolation system so that what reaches the user is only the safe content.
- Client isolation: The end user interface contains a feature called a client which initiates requests. The user sends requests from multiple devices. The isolation system keeps the client separate from the remote hosting server. If the end user is on-premise, the isolation exists within the premises.
- Public web: Many times, when users make requests, it passes through the public web to reach the backend. The reply is processed and follows the same path to the user, which leaves both the user and the back end vulnerable. For safety, all requests and replies pass through an isolation system and then are redirected to the user or back end.
- Web security service: This feature decides which content will be restricted. The service is configured to fit the business needs. The IT professionals may decide to block traffic entirely from specific websites. They may also decide to set it to pop-up warnings in case of any suspicious behavior.
- Hosting environment: In this technique, the entire isolation solution sits in a third-party cloud. All browsing passes through the cloud and never interferes with local infrastructure. The isolation solution can also sit in a virtual machine located in the same environment as the client.
- Threat isolation engine: This solution is used to separate threats in a virtual environment. The solution runs all requests in an isolated environment according to how it is configured.
- Web socket: In this solution, all data flows through a safe channel. Its configuration allows users to interact with browsers in real-time and does not affect quality.
Secure and disposable container: This isolation uses a standalone application that runs independently in the cloud. The solution processes browser sessions in a boxed-in environment. Once each session ends, the container is disposed of.
Cyber-criminals are using complicated strategies to access company systems and steal data. Isolation is a technique that separates threats instead of blocking them. The technique barres attackers from accessing applications, data, and computer systems. The main types of cyberattacks include malware attacks, phishing, denial of service, and man-in-the-middle attacks.