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IT professionals aim to operationalize threat intel in the enterprise

This week, networking bloggers look into operationalizing threat intel, Google Fiber's deployment and home lab spending.

Jon Oltsik, an analyst with Enterprise Strategy Group Inc., in Milford, Mass., explored ways to operationalize...

threat intelligence in the wake of the 2016 Black Hat conference. Threat intel is critical at a time when malware volume is down, but the number of malware variants is at record highs.

Oltsik pointed to a Webroot threat intel report that indicated 97% of malware variants are seen only once. In response, enterprises are boosting their threat intel capabilities, while also increasing their use of antimalware and next-generation endpoint security systems.

Oltsik said he believes spending more on threat intel is just the start. He said CISOs need to launch enterprise-wide threat intelligence audits and consolidate threat intelligence sources, while simultaneously focusing on intelligence requirements and quality metrics. As many as 74% of enterprises said it is very difficult to determine quality and efficacy of their threat intelligence feeds. It's also vital to build an architecture geared toward threat intel inputs and outputs, and create a threat intelligence sharing plan, Oltsik added.

Read more of Oltsik's thoughts about threat intel.

Is 5G behind the slow rollout of Google Fiber?

Greg Ferro, blogging on EtherealMind, said he believes Google is slowing -- or even stopping -- its rollout of Google Fiber because the ongoing development of 5G cellular delays the need for it "on the ground."

Google has encountered lawsuits, legal challenges and access restrictions in its quest to wire cities with high-speed fiber. Those challenges, in combination with high construction costs -- up to $500 per meter, Ferro said -- are making Google think twice about the project. Ferro said Google wants to be able to offer more bandwidth at a cheaper price and is considering shifting its focus instead toward 5G-anchored mobile broadband.

Ferro said he believes 5G -- expected to be available around 2020 -- will be cheaper than fiber, and many existing carriers will roll it out quickly, reducing the need for alternative consumer networks. Because 5G will likely be cheaper and more flexible than fiber, Google is incentivized to invest in 5G base stations, Ferro said.

Explore more of Ferro's ideas about Google Fiber.

Who spends how much on their home labs?

Drew Conry-Murray, writing in Packet Pushers, took a look into how much folks are spending to equip their home labs. Many network engineers and IT professionals cobble together spare PCs, low-cost servers, switches and uninterruptable power sources to create home labs to test products, practice for exams and test out network designs. Packet Pushers surveyed readers of its Human Infrastructure Magazine newsletter to determine how much money they have invested in their home labs -- 20% spent more than $3,000, while 22% spent less than $1,000.

The survey tracked 41 respondents, 12% of whom spent between $2,000 and $3,000 on their home labs. Another 17% of respondents didn't have home labs, but 10% managed to produce home labs for under $500.

Find out more about home lab spending on Conry-Murray's blog.

Next Steps

Using threat intelligence to gain the upper hand

Google Fiber rolls out in San Antonio

Easy home lab builds

Dig Deeper on Network Security Monitoring and Analysis

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