27 December, 2019

Brass Tacks: Experts Endorse Frequent Vuln Assessments

Brass Tacks: Experts Endorse Frequent Vuln Assessments
Andrew Kates
Author: Andrew Kates

In the rapidly evolving landscape of cybersecurity, one concept stands as a linchpin to safeguarding your organization's network and systems against looming security threats.  Frequent vulnerability assessments should be at the forefront of any organization's security program, regardless of the size, industry, or maturity level.  At a foundational level, having the ability to identify and categorize assets and vulnerabilities showcases a strategic approach to security that is both shrewd and practical.  As experts in the field, the significance of frequently assessing your organization's network and systems against malicious actors and other security threats cannot be overstated.    

So, what exactly is a vulnerability assessment and why should you care?  Simply put, a vulnerability assessment is the action taken to review an organization’s network and systems against known security issues.  These assessments, not to be confused with penetration tests, help a cyber security team classify issues from critical to low, thus allowing for a more focused approach to strengthening one’s security posture.   

Conducting regular vulnerability assessments is a vital component of any comprehensive security strategy.  Whether these assessments are performed by in-house resources, or contracted out to a trusted third party, continuous vulnerability assessments are paramount for identifying threats that might otherwise evade scrutiny from your security team.  Malicious attackers are crafty and persistent, so as an organization works to create a more robust security posture, we must also remain vigilant in the fight to deter those bad actors; affording IT personnel the strategic advantage of mitigating potential risks by timely application of patches and system updates. 

One way to mitigate many issues is by implementing frequent automated scanning, using tools that help identify, and effectively prioritize the most pressing concerns within your organization.  It is essential that IT personnel have the proper tools to both discover, and address the issues before attackers are able to use them against their organization, and that is why continuous assessments are encouraged.  Secure Ideas, along with many other industry standards such as PCI DSS, NIST, and ISO 27001, recommends implementing at the very least, quarterly vulnerability assessments as part of an overarching security program.  That is not to say that more frequent testing is not beneficial as new and sometimes critical issues are discovered daily.

Simply put, conducting regular vulnerability assessments guarantees organizations are better equipped to mitigate the weaknesses that currently exist in their overall infrastructure, leaving them more secure and far less vulnerable.  With that being said, these assessments should only serve as a baseline for an overall security management program geared toward protecting your data, and maintaining credibility.

If you have questions and would like to discuss further, please contact us and one of our consultants will gladly set aside time to better understand any challenges you are facing.

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