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What is Defense In Depth?

 , updated on November 23, 2016
Defense in depth is an IT security strategy that uses multiple layers of security controls. It is often explained with an analogy to a castle with many layers of defense such as moats, walls and finally a castle keep.
A basic principle of IT security is that components shouldn't trust each other. That is to say, that each component should assume that other components in an organization or technology stack have been compromised. It is impractical to have every single component in a large system that has no trust in anything. As such, layers are established that don't trust each other. The following are examples of layers used by defense in depth strategies.
User Interfaces
Data Access Layers
Operating Systems
Demilitarized zones
Data Repositories
The following are examples of techniques that may be used at each layer to implement security.
Training & situational awareness
Authentication & authorization
Pattern scanning such as anti-virus tools
Intrusion detection
Perimeters such as firewalls
Audit trails
Overview: Defense In Depth
TypeInformation Security
DefinitionAn IT security strategy that uses multiple layers of security controls.
Related ConceptsInformation Security
Human Error

Information Security

This is the complete list of articles we have written about information security.
Audit Trail
Canary Trap
Critical Infrastructure
Cryptographic Keys
Cryptographic Salt
Data Breach
Data Remanence
Data Security
Deep Magic
Defense In Depth
Digital Identity
Failure Of Imagination
IoT Security
Key Stretching
Network Security
Operations Security
Overlay Network
Password Fatigue
Proof Of Work
Security Controls
More ...
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