How to Increase Your Network Infrastructure ROI
Everyone loves a deal and everyone loves getting more out of what they have. One of my shameful secrets is my undying love for the greasy sweet and spicy wonder of Chili’s Honey-Chipotle Chicken Crispers. The folks at Chili’s let you extend the ROI of the whole experience by including the Chicken Crispers in their 3 for $10 deal. As wonderful as those after-work visits to Chili’s might be, my main point is not the size of the bang you get for your $10 with the 3 for $10 deal, rather it’s how you can get more out of your existing network and network tools by adding a network packet broker to the mix.
WARNING: To get the most out of this blog, you need to have a basic understanding of what a network packet broker (NPB) is. Read this blog to get up to speed.
NPBs help improve your network infrastructure ROI by allowing you to:
1. Expedite troubleshooting
Network downtime can be costly — lost revenue, lost productivity, recovery costs, loss of customers, etc. — and the longer downtime lasts, the more expensive it gets. Reducing mean time to resolution (MTTR) and expediting troubleshooting during downtime is essential for money savings. NPBs expedite troubleshooting by filtering traffic at layers 2 through 7.
Network issues are more easily pinpointed when you can drill down to the application level. Is the issue seen in a certain geolocation, on a particular operating system, with a specific device type, application type, IP address, browser, carrier…? Having this context helps you to pinpoint network issues and resolve them quickly.
2. Detect breaches faster
An insane number of security alerts inundate IT staff daily. Because of this, it is a real challenge to detect actual threats among the mix. This leaves room for dangerous threats to pass through security undetected, potentially wreaking havoc on the network. In 2018, the average cost to discover, mitigate, and recover from a breach was $3.86 million. So, by detecting a breach faster, you improve your infrastructure ROI. NPBs detect breaches faster and save you money by decrypting data, generating NetFlow metadata, and exposing suspicious activity on the network.
3. Reduce the processing burden on your existing tools
Just one way in which NPBs reduce the burden on your tools is through data filtering. The filtering capabilities I mentioned in #1 not only reduce MTTR, but also decrease the workload done by your network monitoring and security tools. Filtering data out of the stream that is sent to certain tools decreases their workload. This makes tools more efficient and extends their shelf life, since capacity upgrades aren’t needed. This improves overall ROI of your network infrastructure.
4. Extend tool life after a network upgrade
Burgeoning data volumes and speeds combined with users’ insatiable appetite for more bandwidth, means a network upgrade or two are on the horizon. Luckily, you don’t have to spend money refreshing all of your tools if you have an NPB in place. Some NPBs, like Vision X, are modular with swappable, upgradable features. These NPBs fit into any size data center with multispeed ports and the modules are completely customizable. This allows you to scale to fit the needs of your network later on when an upgrade is needed. Because you can keep your existing tools without upgrading, the NPB again contributes to the overall network infrastructure ROI.
5. Streamline regulatory compliance
Last, but certainly not least, is compliance. The monetary consequences of noncompliance, like fines or lawsuits, can be devastating for a company. One way you can use an NPB to meet compliance is by using its data masking feature. By allowing the NPB, which is already paid for and installed, to mask sensitive data on your network, you save money in the end. Because the NPB is already capable of masking data, you don’t have to spend money on yet another specialized tool.
THAT'S NOT ALL!
These are just a few ways NPBs improve your network infrastructure ROI. Read this eBook to find out additional ways NPBs contribute to ROI, including examples and use cases.
Now, I think I've worked up an appetite. To Chili's I go!