No enterprise or business would want to be a victim of a cyberattack. However, online presence is a prerequisite for businesses today. Online presence is a vital tool for success, although it is also the means of exposure to data breaches. And after the breach, the issue becomes more complex as the grave consequences of the cyberattack come into play. The cost of the data loss, the mistrust of customers and partners, and the monetary fines that depend on the volume and type of data you store would be pretty taxing.
When approaching cybersecurity in your organization, it is more effective to use a proactive approach rather than a reactive approach, wherein you only act when an attack occurs. Unfortunately, this stance is what more organizations do. Luckily more forward-thinking people now understand that waiting for something to go wrong is costly, considering that the average cost of a data breach in 2021 is $4.42 million.
Thus, cybersecurity should be a top priority, and its implementation should be right now.
With the frequency and sophistication of cyber attacks today, assessing and evaluating your cybersecurity program should be right now. Likewise, instead of adding a new security application for a new threat, your security officers should look for automated security solutions that will provide continuous monitoring. In addition, enterprises need to test and secure their network defenses even if there is no visible sign of imminent attack to ensure better protection.
Security assessments are the most effective proactive approach for your cybersecurity program. Assessments include third-party evaluations, red team engagements, vulnerability assessments, and penetration testing, among others. These methods will help you identify your security programs’ weaknesses and what you should fix. Although effective, there are still some weaknesses in these methods. They are still limited because they solely provide point-in-time assessments.
Given the current heightened and various cyberattack methods, and the changing workplace landscape, enterprises need to implement a strategy for continuous security validation to address the growing risks of cyberattacks.
Using traditional security measures is no longer effective, as they will only give you a snapshot of the status of your security system at the time of the assessment. With continuous security validation, the platform automatically and frequently tests and validates your cyber resiliency. It tests the effectiveness of its security tools and controls to prevent particular attack vectors. With its regular monitoring, the validation platform provides you with organizational security gaps and remediates them immediately.
Preparing for a significant threat
You know that a cyberattack can occur anytime, and you prepare for such an occurrence by deploying the best network security system you can afford. However, you do not know the type of attack you’ll be facing.
You can prepare for any hacking when you know the attack vectors that cyber actors use to penetrate business operations similar to yours. The sophistication and aggressiveness of a continuous security validation platform are the features that make the system one of the most effective in the modern business environment. Using the actual attack vectors from the MITRE ATT&CK framework, you can have an attack emulation using the current methods hackers use. In this manner, you prepare for the precise type of attacks you are likely to experience in the real world and benchmark your security system against the framework.
Emulation, not simulation, is the key. There is a big difference between emulation and simulation. In basic terms, an attack simulation develops an environment that imitates the configurations and behaviour of an actual device and follows a methodology of a programmed attack.
In an attack emulation, testers use threat intelligence based on the ATT&CK matrix so that red and blue teams can use modular techniques, tactics, and procedures to recreate the attack patterns in real-time.
Increasing need for security validation in the new normal
The need for continuous security validation increases in the new workplace landscape. Some people prefer to work from home regularly, while many organizations offer a hybrid workplace setup. Employees can report on site on certain days and work from home for the rest of the workweek. While the new workplace arrangement benefits organizations and employees, it creates favorable circumstances for cyber threats and hackers.
Organizations need to keep their employees productive and safe, ensuring that the remote user can securely connect to their company’s network. In addition, the landscape has changed as there is a convergence of home and office/professional and personal relationships stressing IT and operations teams. With the new normal, its resources are dispersed through several unmanaged and managed computing devices, which IT teams need to secure.
You can draw several scenarios in the new normal, according to the location of the users and the location of the applications and resources of your organization.
- Remote workers need access to private resources or applications that are within the organization’s LAN.
- Remote users need access to corporate apps on the cloud.
- Workers who are in the office and connecting to the corporate LAN need access to the organization’s apps on the cloud.
- Workers in the office and connected to the corporate LAN need access to apps residing in the company’s LAN.
In these scenarios, access to corporate apps and resources features prominently. While their access may be secure when they are in the office, another issue should not be missed. In the hybrid work arrangement, employees will be using their computing devices. Thus, an employee will be going through these scenarios within a workweek.
The situation increases the vulnerabilities of network resources, providing a bigger attack surface for hackers. As such, an organization must always be ready to mitigate an attack. Using a continuous security validation platform now is imperative if you want to improve your cyber resilience, address the changes in your corporate setup, and have increased defense against zero-day vulnerabilities.
The cybersecurity process should be continuous. You should regularly check your organization’s security posture to discover areas that need fixing. Continuous security validation is a valuable security platform in the new normal where home and office work setups mesh with workers’ personal and professional lives to prevent the vulnerabilities of network resources and minimize the attack surface.