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Network segmentation is the process of dividing a computer network into smaller subnetworks, or segments, to improve security and reduce the impact of a security breach. By segmenting your network, you can limit the scope of an attack and minimize the damage caused by a security breach.

Benefits of Network Segmentation

Network segmentation offers several benefits to organizations, including:

  • Improved security: Network segmentation can limit the scope of a security breach, reducing the impact of the attack. It also makes it easier to enforce access controls and detect and respond to security incidents.
  • Reduced risk: By limiting access to sensitive information and systems, network segmentation reduces the risk of data breaches and other cyber attacks. This is especially important for organizations that handle sensitive information or are subject to compliance regulations.
  • Better network performance: Network segmentation can improve network performance by reducing network congestion and improving network speeds. By dividing your network into smaller segments, you can isolate network traffic and reduce the load on your network infrastructure.
  • Easier network management: Smaller, more manageable networks are easier to monitor and manage, reducing the workload of network administrators. This can also improve the overall reliability and availability of your network.

How to Perform Network Segmentation

Performing network segmentation can be a complex process that requires careful planning and execution. Here are the steps you should take to perform network segmentation in your organization:

1. Define the Objectives

The first step in performing network segmentation is to define the objectives of the segmentation. This involves identifying the data, applications, and systems that require the most protection, as well as the potential risks and threats facing your organization. You may also need to consider compliance requirements, such as HIPAA or PCI DSS.

2. Create a Network Diagram

Next, create a network diagram that shows the current network architecture, including all devices, servers, and other endpoints. This will help you identify potential vulnerabilities and areas that require segmentation. Be sure to include details such as VLANs, VRFs, and other network segmentation technologies that are already in place.

3. Identify Network Segments

Based on your objectives and network diagram, identify the segments that need to be created. This may involve grouping devices based on their function, location, or level of sensitivity. For example, you may want to create a separate segment for your finance department, or for devices in a particular physical location.

4. Implement Security Controls

Once you have identified the network segments, it’s time to implement security controls to protect each segment. This may involve deploying firewalls, access controls, and other security measures to limit access to each segment. You may also need to configure PortSecurity or other technologies to ensure that devices can only connect to the appropriate network segments.

5. Test and Monitor the Network

Finally, test and monitor the network to ensure that the segmentation is working effectively. Regular testing and monitoring will help you identify potential vulnerabilities and make any necessary adjustments to your security controls. Be sure to configure firewall rules and other security policies to enforce your network segmentation strategy.

Best Practices for Network Segmentation

Here are some best practices to follow when performing network segmentation:

  • Follow the principle of least privilege: Limit access to each network segment to only those who need it to perform their job functions. Use access controls such as VLANs, VRFs, or other technologies to enforce this principle.

  • Implement strong access controls: Use strong authentication and access controls to limit access to sensitive data and systems. This can include using multi-factor authentication, strong passwords , and other access controls to ensure that only authorized users can access critical resources.

  • Deploy firewalls: Deploy firewalls to limit traffic between network segments and protect against cyber attacks. This can include using both hardware and software firewalls to protect your network from both internal and external threats.

  • Regularly test and monitor the network: Regular testing and monitoring will help you identify potential vulnerabilities and make any necessary adjustments to your security controls. This can include using penetration testing, vulnerability scanning, and other security testing tools to identify potential security gaps.

  • Use network segmentation as part of a layered security approach: Network segmentation is just one part of a comprehensive security strategy that includes other security measures, such as antivirus software, intrusion detection systems, and employee training. By using multiple layers of security, you can better protect your network from cyber threats and reduce the risk of a security breach.

By following these best practices, you can perform network segmentation effectively and protect your organization from cyber threats.


Network segmentation is a crucial part of any organization’s security strategy. By dividing your network into smaller subnetworks, you can limit the scope of a security breach and reduce the risk of cyber attacks. Follow the best practices outlined in this article to perform network segmentation effectively, and use it as part of a layered security approach that includes other security measures. By doing so, you can better protect your organization from cyber threats and keep your sensitive data and systems safe.


These resources provide additional information and best practices for network segmentation that can help you improve the security of your organization’s network.