In the latest on-demand webcast, BeyondTrust joins Larry Brock, the DuPont, USAF and NSA veteran and principal of Brock Cyber Security Consulting, to discuss “6 Best Practices for Privilege Management, Vulnerability Management, and IP Protection.” Below is a summary of key takeaways from the webcast, plus an on-demand video recording of the full presentation.
Brock shares his perspective on the shifting trends in cyber security, including the industry’s evolving focus on system availability, compliance, protecting sensitive information, and enabling business operations and growth.
The purpose of this webcast is to help companies organize, lock down, and manage privilege, vulnerability, and IP protection within their IT environments. Brock offers the following six best practices to move your company forward in the right direction:
1. Tightly Manage Low-Hanging Fruit
The first step towards system security is for your company to remove “low-hanging fruit” for cyber-criminals by way of Privilege Management. Brock points out that if it’s difficult for attackers to gain privileged access on any asset, then you’ve already fought half the battle.
To that end, Brock suggests using multi-factor authentication to make it difficult to access data. Then, use least-privilege management processes and solutions to reduce the number of threat entry points, including endpoints where most initial attacks are focused. Finally, he advises deploying privileged password management solutions to eliminate shared passwords and hard-coded passwords, change passwords automatically, and deploy dual control and approval for critical systems.
2. Aim for Smart Vulnerability Management
Brock goes on to recommend integrating your company’s privilege and vulnerability management and, if possible, denying privileged access to systems with critical vulnerabilities after a certain period of time.
The important thing is to continue to think holistically by aligning your security and IT operations teams toward this common goal. This joint improvement program, driven by business requirements and metrics, provides important analytics and reporting for your leadership team.
Finally, companies also need to work to fix defective operational processes that enable or leave vulnerabilities, such as new system deployments and applications accountability and patching.
3. Identify and Protect the Most Important Assets
Identifying your company’s most important assets is an important step in managing and securing those assets. And yet, while most companies intuitively know what their most important assets are, few have gone through the rigorous process of explicitly identifying and classifying them.
Get back on track by identifying your company’s vital assets, mapping out their location, then moving them to stronger controlled environments and upgrading the business processes surrounding them. Finally, review and continually manage access to these assets.
4. Improve Your Detection Abilities
Companies also need to train and leverage their users to report phishing attempts with a solid reporting solution and a rapid response. Fortunately, modern technology makes this easier than ever before.
Brock recommends that companies collect feeds from open and subscription sources to collaborate with others inside their industry and to stay on top of tactics, techniques and procedures that will help them secure their most important assets. They can also monitor inbound files for malware and unusual application activities or access to the company’s most valuable assets. These key actions will improve your ability to detect and deflect attacks on your system.
5. Hire Skilled External Resources
Throughout the webcast, Brock encourages companies to consider an overall security review from a skilled external resource. This process helps to outline the major business risks of your state of security, and can provide a preview of the danger with skilled penetration testing.
These resources will help you test your prevention, detection, and response capabilities without the threat of a real risk. You’re also left with powerful results to share with senior leaders and stakeholders, making it easier to get approval and funding to close those gaps.
6. Improve Communication Abilities
Finally, Brock encourages every company to work with its senior leadership and IT team to schedule routine meetings to address business and risk issues that matter to them. This is a great opportunity to show your leadership team the metrics that matter to the business and to align those risks with the business.
For an even more insightful look at Privilege Management, Vulnerability Management, and IP Protection, view the on-demand webcast below.