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Most Common Cause Of Net Downtime Is Human Error, Study Says

Two-thirds of IT pros say misconfiguration of network devices is source of most security issues
Most IT security professionals believe human error to be the primary reason for network security disruptions, a new survey says.

According to "Network Security Management: Attitudes and Opinions," a survey published by security management vendor AlgoSec, 66 percent of respondents cited human error in the configuration of network devices as the most common cause of outages in the past 12 months.

The second-most frequently blamed factor in security-related network downtime was capacity overload (14%). Flaws in the gateway product finished third (9%). The majority of respondents said they have anywhere from 10 to 49 different security gateways installed on their network. Another 15 percent of companies had more than 50 security gateways installed.

"Network and security managers are faced with an evolving landscape of both internal and external threats to corporate data," said Avishai Wool, AlgoSec’s CTO, in a statement.

"At the same time, their corporate networks are constantly changing to adapt to the needs of the business – this could be working with new business partners, acquiring another company, or simply adding credit card data to the mix," Wool continued. "Managing the sheer number of devices, not to mention the changes that these devices undergo, is a daunting task for any organization.”

The most common security gateways were firewalls, installed on 98 percent of corporate networks, along with antivirus (found on 90 percent) and content filters (on 85 percent), according to the study. Among these devices, firewalls were said to require the greatest investment of time and were held responsible for causing the most network disruptions.

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