What Is the Intrusion Prevention System and IDS VS IPS [MiniTool Wiki]

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What Is an IPS

What is an IPS? An intrusion prevention system (IPS) is a network security/threat prevention technology. It is used to check the flow of network traffic to detect and prevent attacks. Vulnerability exploitation usually appears in the form of malicious input to the target application or service. Attackers use this input to interrupt and control your applications or computers.

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After successful exploitation, the attacker can disable the target application or potentially access all the permissions available to the infected application. You can go to MiniTool to learn more methods to protect your system.

Types of the Intrusion Prevention System

The intrusion prevention system has different types. The 4 main types are as follow:

Network behavior analysis (NBA): It is used to check network traffic to identify threats that generate strange traffic.

Wireless intrusion prevention system (WIPS): It can be used to analyze network protocol activity throughout the wireless network to find any unreliable traffic. Maybe you are interested in this post - What to Do If You Encounter the Network Protocol Error.

Network-based intrusion prevention system (NIPS): It can be used to analyze protocol activity throughout the network to find any unreliable traffic.

Host-based intrusion prevention system (HIPS): The auxiliary software package conducts malicious activities immediately after a single host and analyzes the events occurring in the host.

IPS Detection Methods

The following three detection methods are always be used: signature-based detection, statistical anomaly-based detection, and stateful protocol analysis detection.

Signature-based detection: The signature-based IDS monitors the data packets in the network and compares it with a predetermined attack pattern.

Stateful protocol analysis detection: This method compares the observed events with a predetermined activity profile of normal activity to identify protocol deviations.

Statistical anomaly-based detection: Anomaly-based IDS will monitor network traffic and compare it with expected traffic patterns.

IDS VS IPS

Then, I will introduce the information on IDS vs IPS. The main difference between them is that IDS is a monitoring system, while IPS is a control system. IDS does not change network packets in any way but IPS will block the transmission of data packets based on the content of the data packets, just like how a firewall prevents IP addresses from communicating.

IDS requires personnel or other systems to review the results and determine the next steps, which may be a full-time job, depending on the network traffic generated daily. IDS provides a better autopsy and forensics tool for CSIRT, which can be used as part of a security incident investigation.

On the other hand, the purpose of IPS is to capture dangerous packets and discard them before they reach the target. It is more passive than IDS and only requires the database to be updated regularly with new threat data.

Many IDS/IPS vendors have integrated newer IPS systems with firewalls to create Unified Threat Management (UTM) technology that combines the functions of these two similar systems into a single unit. Some systems provide both IDS and IPS functions in one unit.

Importance of Intrusion Detection and Prevention Systems

The last part is about the importance of IPS security and IDS security. IDS/IPS technology covers specific and important work of network security strategy. The following are the details.

Automation: IDS/IPS systems are largely hands-free, which makes them ideal for you to use in current security stacks. IPS can give you peace of mind because only limited resource requirements can protect the network from known threats.

Compliance: Part of regulatory compliance usually requires proof that you have invested in technology and systems to protect data. When implementing the IDS/IPS solution, please select a checkbox on the compliance table and resolve many CIS Security controls. More importantly, audit data is a compliance investigations’ important part.

Policy enforcement: IDS/IPS is configurable to help implement internal security policies at the network level.

Final Words

What is the intrusion prevention system? This post has gathered the intrusion prevention system’s definition, types, importance as well as the difference between intrusion detection and prevention systems. If you want to learn some information about networking IPS, you can refer to this post.

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