Hardening Cisco Routers
Publisher: O'Reilly Media
Final Release Date: February 2002
Pages: 194

As a network administrator, auditor or architect, you know the importance of securing your network and finding security solutions you can implement quickly. This succinct book departs from other security literature by focusing exclusively on ways to secure Cisco routers, rather than the entire network. The rational is simple: If the router protecting a network is exposed to hackers, then so is the network behind it. Hardening Cisco Routers is a reference for protecting the protectors. Included are the following topics:

  • The importance of router security and where routers fit into an overall security plan
  • Different router configurations for various versions of Cisco?s IOS
  • Standard ways to access a Cisco router and the security implications of each
  • Password and privilege levels in Cisco routers
  • Authentication, Authorization, and Accounting (AAA) control
  • Router warning banner use (as recommended by the FBI)
  • Unnecessary protocols and services commonly run on Cisco routers
  • SNMP security
  • Anti-spoofing
  • Protocol security for RIP, OSPF, EIGRP, NTP, and BGP
  • Logging violations
  • Incident response
  • Physical security
Written by Thomas Akin, an experienced Certified Information Systems Security Professional (CISSP) and Certified Cisco Academic Instructor (CCAI), the book is well organized, emphasizing practicality and a hands-on approach. At the end of each chapter, Akin includes a Checklist that summarizes the hardening techniques discussed in the chapter. The Checklists help you double-check the configurations you have been instructed to make, and serve as quick references for future security procedures.Concise and to the point, Hardening Cisco Routers supplies you with all the tools necessary to turn a potential vulnerability into a strength. In an area that is otherwise poorly documented, this is the one book that will help you make your Cisco routers rock solid.
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oreillyHardening Cisco Routers
 
3.3

(based on 4 reviews)

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4.0

Review

By Craig

from Undisclosed

Comments about oreilly Hardening Cisco Routers:

Love this book as a good reference for any new router I roll out to tighten down. Quick, easy to read and understand and good examples. I did wish for some more Access-list examples but overall a great book.

(1 of 3 customers found this review helpful)

 
1.0

Hardening Cisco Routers Review

By kain

from Undisclosed

Comments about oreilly Hardening Cisco Routers:

I buy this book to harden my cisco, I expected that in it were covered aspects such access list examples, how to deny ping from an external resource but not internal, acl sorting, how to protect against ddos, virus, how to secure a lan and so on.

the author focuses on some points: lines, tacacs, aaa, ntp and one or more acls for those.

who cares, these material can be searched all over te internet, I've learned much more on newsgroup that with this book, and it costs me pretty much since i'm not a us/canadian citizen.

 
4.0

Hardening Cisco Routers Review

By Peter Broad

from Undisclosed

Comments about oreilly Hardening Cisco Routers:

I found the book short and succinct while giving me "best practice" information. As an IT Auditor it gave me a high level appreciation and understanding for the risks and vulnerabilites of poorly configured routers without overwhelming me with too much detailed technical information.

I now have enough high level information to allow me to talk with network administrators. It clearly and easily gives me a benchmark to measure against while demonstrating the basic fundamental steps which can to be taken to harden the routers to mitigate the highest risks.

(1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

 
4.0

Hardening Cisco Routers Review

By Edward J. Dzialo, CCIE 4440

from Undisclosed

Comments about oreilly Hardening Cisco Routers:

A Great Starter Book

This short (~160 pages) but informative book covers a wide range of security "precautions" for Cisco routers. It provides a foundation on how to limit or mitigate the risk of your Cisco router being attacked or compromised. These ideas and recommendations are a great help to anyone, even if you are an experienced Cisco router engineer or just starting out; all though the book assumes that you have hands on knowledge and experience configuring Cisco routers. As I read chapter after chapter, I found that a few very difficult to understand topics were presented fairly clearly but still difficult for a new beginner, and thus the more experience you have the more you will take out of this book.

Some of the best parts of the book have delved into topic that technical experts will sometimes forget. It explains what risk is and why routers for most are critical links today with "e-business" being mission critical. It should make you think about what the cost are to you being attacked both by reputation and real losses like lost sales, i.e. no email or web server available. This book touches all aspects of security, like physical issues, and better yet recovery after an incident. (But don't wait till then before you read the book or that chapter.)

The best part of the book is how it devotes just the right amount of time to each topic and indicates that if you have not understood a technology, where to go and, better yet, the author conveys that you need to get the jist of things and any work to help harden your router is worth the effort. I like the router configuration examples as well as summaries in each chapter and an over-all router configuration with all recommendations implemented.

This is a must read for anyone in charge of a router connected to the Internet, in essence it provides "rules-of-thumb" that make it harder for the attacker to do damage.

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