Technology_Big data means smarter network security

There’s more to big data than commercial insights. General manager for RSA Australia/NZ (the security division of IT & business transformation company EMC) Shaun McLagan, says his company is using big data techniques to make data centres and online commerce safer.
McLagan says, historically, computer security has been all about imposing series of controls at various points. He says: “That worked fine in the past when everything moved at slower pace. But the drive towards putting more and more online has changed the dynamics. Now, instead of using controls to look for security problems, we’re using big data approach.”
This works, in part, because big data techniques allow security experts to anticipate where systems will be attacked and to recognise the behaviour patterns that indicate something untoward is going on. McLagan uses the analogy of team of robbers ‘casing the joint’ before bank raid: “Just as they’ll go into the bank many times before the raid, criminals will show patterns of activity before hitting an online target.”
Big data is both an opportunity and threat to systems security specialists. McLagan says while his company’s software can deal with security, there is always the possibility of criminals using big data techniques to collect data they can then use to crack passwords, for instance.

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