Peter Norton's Guide to Network Security Fundamentals.by Peter Norton, Mike Stockman, Mike Stockman
Peter Norton's Guide to Network Security provides an overview of common network types and then supplies the details necessary to build and implement a successful network security strategy. Because most commercial networks use a combination of new and legacy equipment and systems, Peter Norton's Guide to Network Security addresses the common network systems and protocols that network administrators use daily and describes the security measures necessary to keep the systems working smoothly and securely.
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As this book points out numerous times, network security is really a trade off between convenience (wide open with no restrictions) and safety (totally locked down to where no one has access). How this trade off is accomplished in today's typical networking environment is covered quite clearly and concisely in this short book. Things I liked were the organization and explanation of each of the common security tools available, such as firewalls, third party authentication and VPN's, with clear discussions of the inherent advantages and disadvantages of each, as well as the authors recommendations on where each should reside on the network. The authors provide great references for additional resources on areas outside the scope of this book also, such as websites, organizations and user groups where more exhaustive information may be obtained. What I found annoying was the boilerplate assembly process used throughout much of the book, where the exact paragraph or group of paragraphs as well as example figures, was replicated whenever a topic overlapped. For example, the discussion of smart cards came up in chapter 5, 'Letting Users Connect Securely', along with a cute diagram of one style of hardware security token, and then again in chapter 6, 'About Authentication and Passwords' we are treated to the exact same set of four or five paragraphs along with the very same example diagram. Overall though, this is a very informative, if short (at only 232 pages), introduction to the subject of network security. Perhaps a better title would have been 'Peter Norton's *Introduction* to Network Security Fundamentals.'