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October 29, 2014

Cisco improves network security of UCS system

The firm releases guide to help network administrators deploy UCS more securely.

By Amy-Jo Crowley

Cisco has unveiled a guide that aims to improve the network security of its unified computing system platform devices.

The guide centres on strengthening the three network planes of management, control, and data to help network administrators to secure user access through the UCS client manager and ensure strong encryption methods.

"Although most of this document is devoted to the secure configuration of a Cisco UCS device, configurations alone do not completely secure a network," Cisco wrote.

"The operational procedures in use on the network, as well as the people who administer the network, contribute as much to security as the configuration of the underlying devices."

The guide says traffic from interactive management sessions, for example, must be encrypted to prevent hackers from accessing sensitive information about devices and networks.

It also encourages administrators to create strong passwords and then periodically change them, while other administrative accounts should have expire dates set.

Cisco also recommended configuring SSH when accessing the ICS device and to limit the number of login sessions each user is permitted to have.

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Cisco added: "Implementing the hardening best practices discussed in this document will increase the security of the UCS system thus increasing overall security to the network the UCS is located in.

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