How Attack Surface Management Preempts Cyberattacks?

The broad cloud services adoption and the succeeding escalation of companies’ networks teamed with the current distant work migration have the major impact of a rigorous enhancement of organizations’ attack surface and created several blind spots in networking architecture.

The unexpected consequences of the prolonged attack surface with patchy observation have clearly shown the rise in the cyber-attack attempts, most maliciously, ransomware, but casing several other attacks. The major concerns are unobserved bind spots used by hackers to breach a company’s infrastructure and enhance their attacking attempts or travel laterally to acquire data.

The issue stands with discovery. Many companies have grown quicker than their capability to manage and track all the moving parts included in their company. As a result, getting closer to the past and current assets catalogue is frequently seen as a complicated and resourced job with no immediate advantages.

However, stating the future cost of a breach and the rising capability of cyber-attackers to acknowledge and utilize exposed assets, ignoring monitoring of an asset can cause a tragic breach.

This is where Attack Surface Management comes into existence!

  • Attack Surface

Initially, you should know what an attack surface is? It is the amount of a company’s attack-prone IT assets, whether the virtual resources are known or unknown, safe or unsafe, active or inactive, and the IT team is aware of them or not. A company’s attack surface changes with time and may include different assets at different time courses.

  • Attack Surface Management

Now that you know what an attack surface is, you should understand attack surface management! It is a practice that allows you to consistently discover, segregate and evaluate the safety of your IT environment. The procedure has two sections:

Now that you know what an attack surface is, you should understand attack surface management! It is a practice that allows you to consistently discover, segregate and evaluate the safety of your IT environment. The procedure has two sections.

Activities are done to manage internet-exposed assets, i.e., External Attack Surface Management.

  • Management activities are done in the organization.

Surface Management involves reporting an Open-source Intelligence used in phishing or engineering attacks, such as making personal data publicly accessible on social networks or tutorials, webinars, or speeches.

Eventually, Attack Surface Management aims to ensure that no vulnerable asset is unobserved and wipe out all blind spots that can lead to an entrance point for the attacker and gain access to your system.

  • Who can use Attack Surface Management?

In the 2021 State of Cybersecurity Effectiveness State webinar, David Klein addressed the worrisome findings presented by Cymulate’s ASM adoption. The findings were:

  • 23% had hosted mismatched SSL certificates. Using the right SSL certificate can help you boost your website’s safety.
  • 37% utilized outside hosted Java.
  • 80% had no anti-spoofing email data.
  • 26% did not have any DMARC record arranged for the domain.
  • 60% have vulnerable accounts, organizational structure, and management services.
  • 77% had a poor website security

After the security gaps have been acknowledged, they can be plugged, but the problematic part here is the limit of the indefinite exposure before their identification.

The ASM users in the evaluation have been from all types of organizations of varied sizes and regions. This suggested that any business with a connected network can enjoy the advantages of adopting ASM as a major part of their cybersecurity structure.

  • Where is ASM available?

Though the technology has just been invented, there has been a rise in ASM vendors. It is efficient to add ASM to your developed platform. ASM Solution works better depending on the products it has been linked with. 

In simple words, if an ASM solution is linked with a reactive suite such as EDR, it will depend on expanded scanning capabilities. In contrast, an ASM solution added in a proactive platform like Extended Security Posture Management will use better scanning abilities to discover hackers’ tools and techniques.

Choosing an integrated Attack Surface Management helps centralize data linked to the company’s security, thereby reducing the risk of data overload of the SOC teams.

  • Significance of Attack Surface Management

You don’t need to go too far to notice the importance of ASM. The Solar Winds attacks entered the company through organizations’ supply chains because of their ignorance. Another forgotten route is outdated software and hardware that continues to be used, like the distant code execution susceptibilities on Microsoft Exchange servers from 2010. 

Usually, attackers make their way through an unknown secure route or a route that is not given significant importance. However, given the use of services and devices in companies, it is simple to overlook something.

How does ASM protect from cyberattacks?

Efficient ASM is a consistent process used by organizations.

  1. Explore assets: 

You cannot protect your assets when you don’t know about their existence. Most companies are unaware of their third-part, cloud environment, or abandoned IP addresses and credentials. Legacy equipment and practices overlook the attack surface assets, but you can easily discover all the observed and unobserved errors with the innovative ASM program.

  1. Test consistently: 

Testing the attack surface once is not enough. It consistently grows as you include new users, services, and gadgets. With this, the risk also increases. Hence, it is essential to continuously check the security gaps to prevent them from becoming outdated.

  1. Setting: 

As all attack courses are not the same, you need a different approach for every attack. Legacy equipment offers a context in a particular setting without prioritizing fixes. An ASM approach needs IP address, device, goal and current usage, susceptibilities, and connections. It will help the IT team rank the cyber risk and know if the asset can be taken down, patched, or removed.

  1. Remediate: 

The remediation procedure can begin after the attack surface has been assessed and marked. To make it effective, you should look for ways to facilitate and automate data handoff from equipment and teams that acknowledge the risk and their seriousness (usually the security operations teams). Immediate fixing helps to optimize the procedure and enhance trust.

At last:

Effective ASM helps to secure all the loopholes of a poorly secured organization. Getting an innovative ASM program shields your organization and prevents your data from getting into the wrong hands.