Author: Geek Computer
Thursday, May 25, 2023

Types of Intrusion Detection Systems Host and Network

You've come to the right place to learn about the various types of Intrusion Detection Systems (IDS). This article will provide a comprehensive overview of the different IDS types, ensuring you're well-equipped to make an informed decision.

In total, intrusion detection systems can be classified into two main categories: network-based (NIDS) and host-based (HIDS). Each type monitors different aspects of a network to detect potential security threats.

Eager to learn more about Intrusion Detection Systems? Read on as we explore various types, their functions, and benefits. We'll dive into signature-based, anomaly-based, and hybrid systems, providing you with the knowledge you need to bolster your network security.

Types of Intrusion Detection Systems [Host and Network]

Types of Intrusion Detection Systems Host and Network

Intrusion Detection Systems (IDS) are security tools that help monitor network traffic or computer activities. They watch out for anything strange and let the person in charge know. There are two main kinds of IDS: Network-based Intrusion Detection Systems (NIDS) and Host-based Intrusion Detection Systems (HIDS).

 NIDS looks at the traffic flowing through a network and checks for any signs of break-ins or harmful actions. They're usually placed in essential spots in the network to cover a larger area. They can detect problems by looking for known destructive patterns, unusual behavior, and issues with network protocols.

 HIDS, on the other hand, focuses on individual computers like servers or personal workstations. They monitor things like system logs, ongoing processes, and file activities. They're good at finding threats from within, attempts to steal data, and unauthorized access to files.

 Here are some examples of popular intrusion detection systems:

  • Snort (NIDS)
  • Suricata (NIDS)
  • Tripwire (HIDS)

But there are some downsides. IDS can sometimes raise false alarms or miss real threats. Also, they usually only tell you when something terrible is happening but don't stop it themselves.

Intrusion detection systems are helpful security tools that can spot suspicious actions. The two main types, network-based (NIDS) and host-based (HIDS), have pros and cons. People in charge of security should think about these factors when picking the best IDS for their needs.

What Are the 3 Intrusion Detection System Methods

Types of Intrusion Detection Systems Host and Network

There are three main methods of intrusion detection: Signature-based, Anomaly-based, and Stateful Protocol Analysis. Each method has its unique approach and advantages, which we will discuss below.

Signature-based Intrusion Detection

This method, known as Knowledge-based or Misuse Detection, relies on a database of known attack patterns or signatures to identify intrusions. When network traffic matches any of the predefined signatures, the IDS raises an alert.

Signature-based IDS is highly effective in detecting known threats but may struggle to identify novel attacks, zero-day exploits, or complex, multi-stage intrusions. Regular updates to the signature database are crucial for maintaining the system's effectiveness.

Anomaly-based Intrusion Detection

In contrast to Signature-based detection, Anomaly-based IDS uses machine learning and statistical analysis to establish a baseline of "normal" behavior for a network or system. By continuously monitoring network traffic, the system can detect deviations from the baseline and flag them as potential intrusions.

This method is beneficial in identifying previously unknown or emerging threats. However, it may result in a higher rate of false positives, as legitimate traffic may sometimes deviate from the established baseline.

Stateful Protocol Analysis

This method analyzes network traffic based on a predetermined set of rules and protocols to identify deviations from expected behavior. Stateful Protocol Analysis IDS monitors the state of network connections and compares them to a predefined profile of how specific protocols should operate.

This approach can detect attacks that exploit weaknesses in communication protocols and identify unusual sequences of events. Stateful Protocol Analysis may require more processing power and can be more complex to implement than the other methods.

What Are the 4 Components of IDS?

Types of Intrusion Detection Systems Host and Network

Intrusion Detection Systems (IDS) are crucial in maintaining the security of computer networks and systems by monitoring and identifying potential threats or unauthorized access attempts.

IDS has four primary components: system architecture, detection methods, data collection, and response management. These components work together to ensure the efficacy and robustness of the IDS.

System Architecture

The architecture of an IDS can be classified into two main types - Network-based IDS (NIDS) and Host-based IDS (HIDS). NIDS monitors network traffic, searching for malicious activity or policy violations, while HIDS focuses on the activities within a specific host or system, examining log files and system processes.

Detection Methods

IDS primarily relies on two detection methods - signature-based detection and anomaly-based detection. Signature-based detection identifies known attack patterns or signatures within network traffic or system activities.

On the other hand, anomaly-based detection builds a baseline of normal behavior and identifies deviations from this baseline, indicating potential intrusions.

Data Collection

To perform effective intrusion detection, IDS requires relevant and accurate data. Data can be collected through passive or active means.

Passive data collection involves monitoring network traffic without interfering, while active data collection involves interacting with the system or network to collect data, such as sending probes or scanning ports.

Response Management

Once a potential intrusion is detected, IDS must initiate appropriate responses to mitigate the threat. This can range from simple notifications to system administrators to automated actions, such as blocking IP addresses, terminating sessions, or isolating affected systems.

How Do Intrusion Detection Systems Work?

Types of Intrusion Detection Systems Host and Network

NIDS analyzes network traffic to identify any suspicious patterns or anomalies. They operate by passively listening to data packets, using signature-based detection to match known attack patterns, and anomaly-based detection to identify deviations from normal behavior. NIDS can identify potential threats before they reach their target, enabling quick response and reducing potential damage.

HIDS, on the other hand, monitors activity on individual hosts, such as servers or workstations. They analyze system logs, configuration changes, and file system modifications to detect unauthorized access or potential threats. HIDS are particularly useful for detecting insider threats and tracking user activities.

Both NIDS and HIDS rely on continuous updates of signatures and algorithms to stay effective. They generate alerts to notify security personnel of potential intrusions, enabling a timely response. In conclusion, Intrusion Detection Systems provide a critical layer of security, helping to safeguard networks and hosts from potential threats.

What Are the IDS Strengths and Limitations?

Types of Intrusion Detection Systems Host and Network

Intrusion Detection Systems (IDS) are essential to secure networks and detect malicious activities. There are two main types of IDS: Network-based (NIDS) and Host-based (HIDS). Each has its strengths and limitations.


  1. Network-based IDS (NIDS) monitors network traffic, enabling early detection of cyber threats before they reach target systems. NIDS is also effective in identifying patterns of known attacks.
  2. Host-based IDS (HIDS) provides an in-depth analysis of a specific host's activities, allowing for detecting attacks that may go unnoticed by NIDS. HIDS can also detect insider threats and policy violations.


  1. NIDS can generate false positives and negatives, impacting its effectiveness. It can also struggle with encrypted traffic, limiting its visibility into potential attacks.
  2. HIDS can consume significant system resources, potentially affecting the host's performance. It can also be bypassed if the attacker gains root access.

IDS plays a crucial role in network security, and understanding their strengths and limitations can help organizations choose the most suitable solution. Key factors to consider include the type of IDS, network traffic monitoring, detection capabilities, and potential performance impact.


Intrusion Detection Systems (IDS) safeguard networks and systems from malicious activities. There are two main types: Network-based (NIDS) and Host-based (HIDS), each with unique advantages. Selecting the appropriate IDS depends on an organization's specific requirements and resources. Regular updates and maintenance are essential for optimal effectiveness. For more information on related services, visit our security service page.

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