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Network Security First-Step Paperback – May 21 2004

5.0 out of 5 stars 3 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 480 pages
  • Publisher: Cisco Press; 1 edition (May 21 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1587200996
  • ISBN-13: 978-1587200991
  • Product Dimensions: 18.7 x 2.6 x 23 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 839 g
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars 3 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #3,244,752 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product Description

From the Back Cover

Your first step into the world of network security

  • No security experience required
  • Includes clear and easily understood explanations
  • Makes learning easy

Your first step to network security begins here!

  • Learn about hackers and their attacks
  • Understand security tools and technologies
  • Defend your network with firewalls, routers, and other devices
  • Explore security for wireless networks
  • Learn how to prepare for security incidents

Welcome to the world of network security!

Computer networks are indispensable-but they're also not secure. With the proliferation of Internet viruses and worms, many people and companies are considering increasing their network security. But first, you need to make sense of this complex world of hackers, viruses, and the tools to combat them.

No security experience needed!

Network Security First-Step explains the basics of network security in easy-to-grasp language that all of us can understand. This book takes you on a guided tour of the core technologies that make up and control network security. Whether you are looking to take your first step into a career in network security or are interested in simply gaining knowledge of the technology, this book is for you!

About the Author

Tom Thomas claims he never works because he loves what he does. Along with his various roles in the networking industry, he is the author or coauthor of 17 books. Through his writing and his work as an instructor and a training-course developer, Tom has taught thousands of people how networking works.

Customer Reviews

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
I reveled in the fact that a book has been written for those who are new to the security field. This book just be required reading for all Junior Engineers. The author does not over simplify, but does not muddy the waters for those that grasping for a clue. Kudos and Huzzah to Mr. Thomas!!!
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Format: Paperback
It is about time someone wrote a comprehensive book on network security starting from the ground up. This is well written, helpful and insightful. Mr. Thomas has done a superb job!!! I highly recommend this work for any IT professional specializing in security. Awesome Sourcebook!!!
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Format: Paperback
Great book for security newbies. Also a great resource for those with more experience in network security. Well written and easy to read. The technologies and terminology used, were explained so that even the beginner could follow along. Nicely done Mr. Thomas.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: HASH(0x9b4a5c90) out of 5 stars 22 reviews
HASH(0x9b4e65d0) out of 5 stars Really not worth your time and money. Dec 2 2014
By Steven Lavoie - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
There really just wasn't enough information here to justify an entire book, nor the price for an entire book. It was more like a "networking overview" than a "first-step" style introduction to the incredibly complicated world of networking security. I breezed through the book and learned very little that was practically useful in my future classes and courses. There was nothing particularly memorable in there so I haven't even referenced it since I completed my 1-credit course that required it, "Introduction to Cybersecurity" (which was also a colossal waste of my time and money).

Often, I had more questions than answers so the book was, at best, a list of search terms for Google.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x9b4e6bf4) out of 5 stars Not a good textbook Oct. 31 2006
By Amazon Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
We are currently using this book as a text in school. The book is more like an overview (hence the title) but it's so over the entire view that it's hard to get any real substance out of it. I'd rather have just read a glossary that told me what VPNs, DMZs, firewalls and encryption are. The mispellings and other typos are enough to make me want to throw this book out of the window. Did the editor actually proofread this thing? This is an alright reference as an addition to another book but it fails to stand on it's own as a text. Big disappointment.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x9b4e6abc) out of 5 stars Good First-Step for MUCH NEEDED Network Security Oct. 30 2004
By S. Scheiderer - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
Network Security First-Step

(Your first step into the world of network security)

Reviewer Name: Steve Owen Scheiderer, Network Administrator

Reviewer Certification: MCSE NT 4.0, CCNA

ISBN: 1-58720-099-6

If you've ever been victimized by a hacker you're left standing there asking "How'd they do this?" and "What could we have done to prevent it?" One of the most valuable insights of Network Security First-Step by Tom Thomas is that you don't have to be a rocket scientist to begin fighting hacker attacks. Thomas introduces the reader to the techniques - often strikingly simplistic or scripted via readily available tools - of the hacker with a "It takes one to fight one!" tactic.

Although there is plethora of technical information, there is plenty of non-technical information to consider. There is something for network administrators, security experts, CEOs and average Jane and Joe user at the office (or at home). Even the most non-technical user learns the importance of and the role they play in protecting the network with a "loose lips sink ships" approach. CEOs and policy-makers learn to lead by example as they submit to best practices and written policies. This may be one of the greatest feature of the book for the more technically savvy network professional who absolutely needs to enlist the cooperation of both CEO and the average user if the network security war is to be won.

Thomas builds on years of experience to show how hackers not only are interested in "targets of choice" but also "targets of opportunity". The goal is to protect the network on various levels to guard against either type of attack from the extremely sophisticated to those inflicted on sitting ducks ("targets of opportunity"). An entire chapter (Two) is dedicated to written security polices and each chapter is full of tools to use in this quest.

Thomas' expertise simultaneously shines (especially in the "Secure IOS Template" pp. 216-228) and presents a challenge to the novice in the area of network security. At times terminology is presented prior to its definition (like "social engineering" on page 4 and definition on page 5; "choke point" on page 192 and definition on page 193). Patience will be a virtue for the reader when coming upon new terminology throughout the book. So many tools are presented that at times the reader can be left wondering "what does this tool do?" The "Acceptable Use Policy" of Granite Systems is offered "if you want to reuse this policy" (p. 54) but the reader was never told where the text (template) could be downloaded. Finally, at times chapter outlines, figures and flow of the text were hard to follow. Nevertheless, Thomas' expertise and insight make these minor challenges worth enduring and certainly this is a complex topic which a book such as this can only begin to explore.

I would definitely read other titles by this author and his team of technical editors. I give Network Security First-Step a 4.5 rating on a scale of 1 to 5. An on-line errata page would greatly assist the reader in filling in some of gaps, typos, etc. missed by the author and editors.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x9b4e6f3c) out of 5 stars Filled with critical errors July 17 2006
By Enigma - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I have been buying books/other items on Amazon since Amazon's inception and this is the first review I've written. I feel compelled to warn others.

I would have given this book four stars if it weren't for the errors. The intent and content are very good for beginners. Also, good writing style and easy read. However, there are so many critical errors, it drops the value of the book tremendously. As placed in an example by another reviewer, simply leaving out a word like 'not' can have a huge difference in meaning w/in a given context. This book does it over and over again.

Luckily, I have experience and know what is an error, but this is a beginner's guide so it is unacceptable to have so many of these types of errors. Since I don't know everything, there were a few occasions where I had to research what was stated to find correct information (knowing it was wrong, but not knowing the exact answer).

Unfortunately, if you are new to the subject matter this book covers, you will have problems as the book is simply inaccurate in so many vital areas. I would recommend you steer clear of this text.

If you know the material, it is a decent refresher that is a quick read.
4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x9b4e6db0) out of 5 stars Security Springboard Nov. 30 2004
By Amazon Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
I recently read Network Security First-Step (ISBN 1-58720-099-6) as the literal first step in my self-education on network security. I've done a little work with firewalls and ACLs, but due to some major security projects on the horizon, and also on my selfish desire to beef up my resume in that area, I've decided to dedicate some time to furthering my knowledge of network security. The book was written by Tom Thomas, who has authored or co-authored 17 books on networking and has also worked as an instructor. He also has a high level of experience in the industry. This experience shows in the quality of this book, which is advertised as an easy introduction into the world of network security. As such, it seemed like a natural place to start my security studies. Having read the book now, I'd have to say that it definitely lives up to the advertising. It is an introduction for the security novice, with just enough technical material to whet the appetite of even experienced networking guy like myself. When the material does get technical, the author uses real-world examples to explain the concepts and does so to great effect, making the book understandable for network novices.

The book itself is 400 pages and consists of 10 chapters which cover a wide variety of topics. Chapter 1 is an introduction into the mind and tools of hackerdom. Chapter 2 covers basic security policies and practices. Chapter 3 is a basic overview of security technologies and their uses and benefits. Chapters 4 through 9 go more in-depth into the various security technologies introduced earlier (protocols, firewalls, router security, VPNs, wireless, and intrusion detection) and how they are used. Chapter 10 discusses tools for hacking and security auditing. I can't say enough about how valuable I found the information provided in this book. The author sprinkles the book with URLs which not only reinforce the topic he's covering, but also allow the reader to continue researching on their own. I now have a folder full of web bookmarks which I'm only beginning to delve into. This book doesn't just spoon feeding information to the reader, but also sets them up for a much deeper understanding on networking, depending upon their desire to go deeper. Another feature I like about the book is how the author laid out the advantages and limitations of each network security technology. He also doesn't try to sell any one technology as the Panacea for network security. Rather, he advocates a much more practical layered approach to network security.

In conclusion, I recommend this book for anyone wanting to get started in network security. It stands as a springboard into a whole new area of study for my career. I've already come up with a few projects that must be implemented in our network just from reading this introductory book. In the coming months, I plan to read as many security and hacking titles as I can and use that information to better secure our network. I can tell it's going to be a busy year.

On my 5 ping rating scale, I give this book an emphatic 5.