Managing the Network

All but the smallest networks, where changes are relatively infrequent, require ongoing management.

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  • Inappropriate control over access to the network will threaten the confidentiality and integrity of your data.

  • Strike a balance between exercising too much and too little control.
  • The network must have clear demarcation guidelines as to which data may legitimately be shared with other organisations or the public (e.g. an Extranet) and which are to be safeguarded from general access. See Access Control.
  • Enforce the guidelines using appropriate technology safeguards e.g. a firewall or by the use of separate systems. See Developing a Web Site.
  • For higher risk systems, consider providing an 'enforced path' from a specific user terminal / workstation directly to the application.
  • Inadequate capacity can make efficient operation difficult or impossible.

  • Monitor network traffic to identify anomalies and bottlenecks.
  • Scrutinise all proposals for forthcoming service enhancements e.g. new service delivery options or new systems, and ensure that the network can absorb the resultant increased usage. See also Information Security Risk Assessment.
  • Slow or inadequate system response times impedes business processing.

  • Review sizing exercise and, in particular, the estimated anticipated loading.
  • Monitor network traffic to identify anomalies and bottlenecks.
  • Determine whether your network is slow in its entirety or only in part.
  • Identify the source of the problem.
  • Establish the expectations and needs of users and determine how and why the problem has occurred.
  • Consider the possibility of reducing the overall processing load or increasing network capacity. Shorter term, consider management of peak loadings to reduce contention.
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