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Security in Context: The BeyondTrust Blog

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Bringing you news and commentary on solutions and strategies for protecting critical IT infrastructure in the context of your business.

Just One Open Server Is Enough For Misuse Of Privilege

Posted January 30, 2012    Peter McCalister

Gambling on the odds may be fine for a weekend in Las Vegas, but do you really want to take that same risk with your precious corporate information assets? Zappos learned the hard way what happens when even one server is at risk from a security perspective.

A recent Dark Reading articled entitled “Zappos Dealing With Data Breach” reported on the recent need for the online shoe and clothing retailer (owned by Amazon) to email its 24 million customers with a notification of an internal breach. The article goes on to quote Zappos CEO, Tony Hsieh: “We were recently the victim of a cyberattack by a criminal who gained access to parts of our internal network and systems through one of our servers in Kentucky. We are cooperating with law enforcement to undergo an exhaustive investigation.”

I recently read Mr. Hsieh’s excellent book Delivering Happines and was thoroughly impressed with his attention to corporate culture and customer service. His 10 core values can be an inspiration for every company looking to differentiate itself in this hyper-competitive global economy. The challenge that needs to be highlighted in this story is that all it ever takes in a single server with full admin rights available for someone to abuse that privilege and gain unauthorized access to sensitive information.

Implementing a least privilege solution across every server (physical, virtual and cloud-based) is a great first step in preventing this type of embarrassment from happening to you.

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Additional articles

How To Implement The Australian Signals Directorate’s Top 4 Strategies

Posted October 20, 2014    Morey Haber

The Australian Signals Directorate (ASD), also known as the Defence Signals Directorate, has developed a list of strategies to mitigate targeted cyber intrusions. The recommended strategies were developed through ASD’s extensive experience in operational cyber security, including responding to serious security intrusions and performing vulnerability assessments and penetration testing for Australian government agencies. These recommendations…

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Exploiting MS14-059 because sometimes XSS is fun, sometimes…

Posted October 17, 2014    BeyondTrust Research Team

This October, Microsoft has provided a security update for System.Web.Mvc.dll which addresses a ‘Security Feature Bypass’. The vulnerability itself is in ASP.NET MVC technology and given its wide adoption we thought we would take a closer look. Referring to the bulletin we can glean a few useful pieces of information: “A cross-site scripting (XSS) vulnerability exists…

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Four Best Practices for Passing Privileged Account Audits

Posted October 16, 2014    Chris Burd

Like most IT organizations, your team may periodically face the “dreaded” task of being audited. Your process for delegating privileged access to desktops, servers, and infrastructure devices is a massive target for the auditor’s microscope. An audit’s findings can have significant implications on technology and business strategy, so it’s critical to make sure you’re prepared…

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