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

Playing Russian Roulette With Your Auditor

Posted May 20, 2011    Peter McCalister

Who could forget the image of Christopher Walken’s Academy Award winning performance in The Deer Hunter? Anyone who has seen that movie can not help but understand the ultimate penalty for losing at Russian Roulette. Even though the penalties aren’t quite as “life threatening” when the compliance auditor comes around, they can be “career threatening” to the IT executive who plays the same game with meeting regulatory requirements.

I’ve blogged before about the right side, wrong side and wild side of the dreaded audit, but I didn’t realize the extent of IT organizations that “pray for the best” when it comes to achieving a passing mark from their outside auditors. The misuse of privilege in any organization is absolutely in violation of most every regulation on the books today. Just run an entitlements report to see who has access to what information resources across your extended enterprise and you will immediately determine to extent of the potential problem. For those of you more interested in digging to the heart of the challenge, then I found this very cool mind-map on the “Frequently Avoided Questions About IT Auditing” in New Zealand of all places.

It also helps to understand the Information Technology Audit Process. The Committee of Sponsoring Organizations of the Treadway Commission (COSO) is recognized worldwide for providing guidance on critical aspects of organizational governance, business ethics, internal control, enterprise risk management, fraud and financial reporting and has an incredible amount of content on their site to assist with this as well.

Bottom line: don’t play Russian Roulette with your auditor as the consequences can get messy.

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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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