Computer networking helps you centralize your data and IT processes through a shared platform that can be accessed and retrieved through multiple computers. If your IT infrastructure is based on a concrete network, here’s how network auditing can help you improve your performance:
Network auditing refers to the process of inventorying your networks according to the hardware and software involved. This is a complicated mapping process that primarily deals with identifying the different network elements.
The purpose is to gather, analyze, and process data in order to ascertain the network’s overall health. The audit also provides an insight into how effective the network control is vs. the organization’s overall network requirements.
The auditors also check whether the network practices and controls are in line with the internal and external regulations and network policies.
Network audit vs. network assessment
Network audits primarily inventorize your services, hardware, and software. However, a network assessment analyzes the IT infrastructure as a whole and identifies any areas for improvement. Common topics that come under the domain of a network assessment bandwidth bottlenecks, resource utilization, and security flaws.
Assessment reports are far more specific and are more focused on how to improve network performance. They identify problematic areas and network issues that are dampening your performance and causing additional security risks.
When do you need a network audit?
Ideally, network audits are timed around the same time as you take other major technological decisions. However, you need to consider a network audit if you’re dealing with outdated and incomplete inventories, network upgrades and refreshes, troubleshooting and resolutions, and regulatory and compliance standards.
If your company has been through a merger and acquisition and has installed some major new applications, a network audit is in order. Your networks need to be upgraded from time to time. An audit will tell you which ones need to be replaced. Let’s say you are experiencing a network outage and aren’t able to connect to the internet; a quick network audit will help you troubleshoot the network.
Performing a network audit involves:
- Planning the audit.
- Getting a buy-in from stakeholders.
- Saving data for accessibility.
- Collecting information necessary for the audit.