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Forgive me if this is a ridiculous question but I am looking for some clarification on these 2 terms and how each one differs in term of security.

My understanding is that a federated network is where separate networks share resources and allows them to be used and accessed as if they were a single entity.

And a segmented network is simply one that has been 'split' into smaller networks.

So my question is, practically, how are they different? (One is a big network being broken into smaller ones, the other is smaller networks forming a larger one) Especially when it comes to security: If a sub network is compromised on a federated network, is the entire network compromised and the same for segmentation?

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Without much context, there's no definitive answer but I'll give it a try.

practically, how are they different?

The difference is in organization and management.

A federated network is managed by different entities/organizations that have agreed on some common form of internetworking. Each separate network can be vastly different in architecture, management and security.

A segmented network is managed by a single entity. The component networks are likely to share a common architecture, management and a common security model.

The most obvious difference in structure might be double firewalls between federated networks and only single firewalls between network segments.

If a sub network is compromised on a federated network, is the entire network compromised and the same for segmentation?

The point of both structures is to prevent a spread in case of compromise. In a federated network, each network protects itself while networks segments are protected by a central service/management.

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