Receive-only UTP cables are a cheap and easy way to monitor home and SOHO LANs. However, when the monitored networks are greater in size, such as corporate networks that have large numbers of computers, professional devices that scale well are a better choice. In short, consider Network Taps if you require advanced devices capable of monitoring high-speed connections.
The need to monitor and analyze network traffic has increased and will continue to rise going forward. This increase is due to both the need for improved network security and also the requirement to better understand our own IT infrastructures. As is in IT, each situation requires a different solution. I hope that this article has offered the reader a few alternatives suitable for their environment.