Securosis

Research

Pragmatic Security for Cloud and Hybrid Networks

One of the bigger issues when migrating to the cloud is translating and extending your existing security controls, especially our old friend, network security. While cloud networking may resemble what we are used to, under the covers it behaves, and is managed, very differently. Over the last few decades we have been refining our approach to network security. Find the boxes, find the wires connecting them, drop a few security boxes between them in the right spots, and move on. Sure, we continue to advance the state of the art in exactly what those security boxes do, and we constantly improve how we design networks and plug everything together, but overall change has been incremental. How we think about network security doesn’t change – just some of the particulars. Until you move to the cloud. While many of the fundamentals still apply, cloud computing releases us from the physical limitations of those boxes and wires by fully abstracting the network from the underlying resources. We move into entirely virtual networks, controlled by software and APIs, with very different rules. Things may look the same on the surface, but dig a little deeper and you quickly realize that network security for cloud computing requires a different mindset, different tools, and new fundamentals. Many of which change every time you switch cloud providers. This report walks you through these differences, and includes specific examples from major cloud providers to show you what it looks like in the real world. Our thanks to Algosec for licensing the research so we can offer it for free. Pragmatic Security for Cloud and Hybrid Networks (pdf) Share:

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Network-based Threat Detection

The more things change, the more they stay the same. We have been talking about Reacting Faster and Better for years and we will continue to do so, because trying to prevent every attack is and will remain futile. The best path forward is to continue advancing the ability to prevent attacks, while spending as much time on detecting attacks that successfully compromise your defenses. This detection-centric view of the world has been a central theme in our research; it highlights a variety of areas to focus on – including the network, endpoints, and applications. We know many organizations have already spent a bunch of money on detection – particularly intrusion detection, its big brother intrusion prevention, and SIEM. But these techniques haven’t worked effectively either, so now is time to approach the issue with fresh eyes. By taking a new forward look at detection, not from the standpoint of what we have already done and implemented (IDS and SIEM), but instead in terms of what we need to do to isolate and identify adversary activity, we will be able to look at the kinds of technologies needed right now to deal with modern attacks. Times have changed and attackers have advanced, so our detection techniques need to evolve as well. In our Network-based Threat Detection paper, we focus on what kinds of indicators make the most sense to look for on the network, how to prioritize what you find, and then steps to operationalize the process to make detection consistent and reliable. We would like to thank our licensees (in alphabetical order), Damballa, Niara, and Vectra Networks. Our unique licensing model enables us to perform impactful and objective research and still pay our bills, so please thank them too. Download: Network-based Threat Detection (PDF) Share:

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Applied Threat Intelligence

Threat Intelligence remains one of the hottest areas in security. With its promise to help organizations take advantage of information sharing, early results have been encouraging. We have researched Threat Intelligence deeply; focusing on where to get TI and the differences between gathering data from networks, endpoints, and general Internet sources. But we come back to the fact that having data is not enough – not now and not in the future. It is easy to buy data but hard to take full advantage of it. Knowing what attacks may be coming at you doesn’t help if your security operations functions cannot detect the patterns, block the attacks, or use the data to investigate possible compromise. Without those capabilities it’s all just more useless data, and you already have plenty of that. Our Applied Threat Intelligence paper focuses on how to actually use intelligence to solve three common use cases: preventative controls, security monitoring, and incident response. We start with a discussion of what TI is and isn’t, where to get it, and what you need to deal with specific adversaries. Then we dive into use cases. We would like to thank Intel Security for licensing the content in this paper. Our licensees enable us to provide our research at no cost and still pay our mortgages, so we should all thank them. Download: Applied Threat Intelligence (PDF) Share:

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Endpoint Defense: Essential Practices

We’ve seen a renaissance of sorts regarding endpoint security. To be clear, most of solutions in the market aren’t good enough. Attackers don’t have to be advanced to make quick work of the endpoint protection suites in place. That realization has created a wave of innovation on the endpoint that promises to provide a better chance to prevent and detect attacks. But the reality is far too many organizations can’t even get the fundamentals of endpoint security. But the fact remains that many organizations are not even prepared to deal with unsophisticated attackers. You know, that dude in the basement banging on your stuff with Metasploit. Those organizations don’t really need advanced security now – their requirements are more basic. It’s about understanding what really needs to get done – not the hot topic at industry conferences. They cannot do everything to fully protect endpoints, so they need to start with essentials. In our Endpoint Defense: Essential Practices paper, we focus on what needs to be done to address the main areas of attack surface. We cover both endpoint hygiene and threat management, making clear what should be a priority and what should not. It’s always useful to get back to basics sometimes, and this paper provides a way to do that for your endpoints. We would like to thank Viewfinity for licensing the content in this paper. Our licensees allows us to provide our research for no cost and still pay our mortgages, so we should all thank them. Download: Endpoint Defense: Essential Practices (PDF) Share:

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The 2015 Endpoint and Mobile Security Buyer’s Guide

In an uncommon occurrence we have updated one of our papers within a year of publication. As mentioned in the latest version of our Endpoint Security Buyer’s Guide, mobile devices are just additional endpoints that need to be managed like any other device. But it became clear that we needed to dig a bit deeper into securing mobile endpoints. Our updated and revised 2015 Endpoint and Mobile Security Buyer’s Guide updates our research on key endpoint management functions including anti-malware, patch and confirmation management, and device control. Additionally we dug a lot deeper into mobile security and managing BYOD. The reality is that securing endpoints hasn’t gotten any easier. Employees still click things and attackers have gotten better at evading perimeter defenses and obscuring attacks. Humans, alas, remain gullible and flawed. Regardless of any training you provide employees, they continue to click stuff, share information, and fall for simple social engineering attacks. So endpoints remain some of the weakest links in your security defenses. As much as the industry wants to discuss advanced attacks and talk about how sophisticated adversaries have become, the simple truth remains that many successful attacks result from simple operational failures. So yes, you do need to pay attention to advanced malware protection tactics, but if you forget about the fundamental operational aspects of managing endpoint hygiene the end result will be the same. To provide some context, we have said for years that management is the first problem users solve when introducing a new technology. Security becomes a consideration only after management issues are under control. This is the key reason we are adding a bunch of new content about securing mobile devices. Many organizations have gotten their arms around managing these devices, so now they are focusing their efforts on security and privacy – especially around apps running on those devices. What has not changed is our goal for this guide: to provide clear buying criteria for those of you looking at endpoint security solutions in the near future. Direct Download (PDF): The 2015 Endpoint and Mobile Security Buyer’s Guide We would like to thank Lumension Security for licensing this paper. Obviously we wouldn’t be able to do the research we do, or offer it to you without cost, without companies supporting our work. Share:

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Integrating Penetration Testing

Integrating Penetration Testing into a Web Application Security Program. Attachments Web_Application_Assessment-PDF.pdf [5.0MB] Share:

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