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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.

WikiLeaks: The Disease or the Symptom?

Posted December 7, 2010    Peter McCalister

How much press will we have to endure on the significant problems created by WikiLeaks and the public lynching of those who perpetrate these leaks before we realize that if you give someone an inch (excessive admin rights) they will take a mile (misuse that privilege)?

To use a metaphor: If I sneeze, will you give me a tissue and send me on my way?  Will you give me cold medicine?  How about allergy medicine?  Without knowing the cause, “the disease“, then reacting to the sneeze, “the symptom“, will ultimately result in a response that may be over-kill or under-kill.

Some journalists do get it.  Mike Martin at TechNewsWorld published an insighful story titled WikiLeaks Wrangling May Be Escalating Into Cyberwar.  He rightly points out that “the Wikileaks controversary could be devolving into a wiki-war.”

So why is it that every journalist seems to be focused on the symptom, “the leak”, instead of the disease, the “intentional misuse of privilege” caused by “excess admin rights”?

Implemening a privilege identity management solution and eliminating admin rights from servers, desktops, network devices, virtual servers and cloud environments is a strong move in the right direction to ensure that everyone in your organizaton only has access to what they should have based on corporate policy, thus ensureing governance and regulatory compliance and limiting to potential for other “leaks” from your organization.

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Additional articles

expert-russellsmith

Best Practices for Managing Domain Admin Accounts

Posted August 3, 2015    Russell Smith

The risks of using privileged domain accounts on devices that are not secured to the same level as DCs increases the chances that domain administrator credentials could be exposed. Windows caches credentials by default to authenticate users when a domain controller can’t be reached, including those of domain administrator accounts that have previously logged in to a device. As such, a compromised workstation or member server can also lead to stolen domain administrator credentials.

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PowerBroker for Mac: A Least-Privileged Apple a Day…

Posted July 27, 2015    Jason Silva

BeyondTrust PowerBroker for Mac reduces the risk of privilege misuse by enabling standard users on Mac OS X to perform administrative tasks successfully without entering elevated credentials.

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PrivilegedAccountManagement

On Demand Webinar – Now is the time for Privileged Account Management

Posted July 24, 2015    BeyondTrust Software

In this webinar, SANS Instructor and Founder of Voodoo Security, Dave Shackleford, will revisit several hacking and breach scenarios that involved privileged accounts, and use these as examples while discussing tools and tactics to get this problem under control once and for all.

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