The NCSC stresses vulnerability management for a simple reason; “all modern software contains vulnerabilities”. In fact, they go so far in emphasising the importance of this practice as to say that “executive staff should ideally be as aware of the major vulnerabilities in their IT estate as they are of their financial status”.
Building resilience against a cyber attack is therefore not only about having robust response strategies in place, but involves knowing and addressing your vulnerabilities before an attack even becomes a real threat.
Not only does this significantly reduce the chance of a successful attack, it also prepares you for any impacts that may occur if a malicious actor was to breach your network, giving you actionable data that will strengthen any future response.
No organisation is exempt from cyber weakness, therefore none should ignore the importance of building resilience. However, as there will always be an insurmountable presence of vulnerabilities, causing different industries to approach this task with different priorities.
Our CyberAware Resilience platform gives many different industries the power to model potential cyber attacks, understanding the journey malicious actors will likely take from the initial vulnerability to their target asset(s). Below, we outline how different sectors can benefit from this proactive capability.
MANAGE VULNERABILITIES IN LARGE NETWORKS
Large organisations like those in Critical National Infrastructure (CNI) often consist of sprawling digital networks spanning across multiple sites, multiple systems (many of which are legacy), and tens of thousands of assets. Prioritising any kind of patching or mitigation activity is near impossible without the right tools.
CyberAware Resilience’s attack path analysis highlights the most critical and most likely routes an attacker would take. Used in conjunction with a good asset management system, it becomes much easier to identify relevant vulnerabilities and quickly understand those that should be addressed first, even for large network landscapes.
Health Trusts are an excellent example where attack path analysis can offer manifold benefits. Staff are already time-poor and resource-laden, so they need a tool to expediate and simplify vulnerability management across intricate networks, especially in cases where the technologies are outdated or not being managed efficiently.
In addition, CyberAware Resilience is a very robust system that is accessible to Trusts within their budget and resources.
Similarly, schools located across the nation are connected under a governing body, meaning the total network infrastructure is once again vast.
The education environment introduces many additional vulnerabilities. Networks will include multiple models and systems, updated software may be present on older technology, and assets are closely connected making it easy for attacks to spread. Equally, giving young people access to the internet makes additional safeguarding both necessary, yet difficult to manage and enforce amongst users.
CyberAware Resilience gives governing bodies a proactive solution for assessing, monitoring, and mitigating potential threats before they even come into contact with this young population.
Corporate organisations, like legal or insurance offices, will be managing multiple sites within large IT infrastructures. In these networks there will be certain critical assets which cyber security teams want to protect against attack.
CyberAware Resilience allows these teams to focus in on the assets of importance by automatically sifting through vulnerabilities and identifying those on attack path to those assets. This saves a huge amount of time and money by not patching non-critical issues.
MODEL ATTACKS IN CONTEXT
CyberAware Resilience has the power not only to model attack paths through a network, but to do so within a simulated business model, taking into account the interdependent processes, assets and users involved.
Tools will model how an attack will likely travel from its entry point throughout the network, assessing which assets will be impacted and how this may affect the strategic business actions or outcomes. This provides even more targeted intelligence and can be used to proactively build resilience in your most critical operations.
From government to banking to energy, industries can employ this use case to create robust processes, fail safes or mitigations that aim to ensure their most essential operations continue to run smoothly, with minimal interruption or disruption. For example, users may discover a vulnerability that leads to industrial IoT equipment, medical devices, or energy controls, to name a few, being shut down. These impacts could be devastating for populations, but these vulnerabilities can now be managed and prioritised.
Often attackers will target CNI for exactly this reason, holding data, equipment, or devices hostage for ransom. CyberAware Resilience gives these organisations the power to mitigate these incidents.
Explore more on having a proactive cyber resilience stance
Other large-scale commercial businesses, such as retail, can use this capability in the same way, identifying and targeting the vulnerabilities that could cause the greatest disruption if exploited. For example, a weak entry point that would lead to payroll equipment or point-of-sale devices.
Military and defence
Defence organisations can alternatively model their planned missions. CyberAware Resilience is a useful tool for strategic analysis and threat assessment during mission planning, helping to gain situational awareness that bridges the gap between the cyber and physical domains.
Users can assess threat levels before a mission and either revise their strategies, implement mitigations, or abort a mission if the risk is too high. In addition, CyberAware Resilience can also provide insight into emerging threats and possible mitigation responses to support operations and reduce risk.
ACCESS CONSISTENT SITUATIONAL AWARENESS
CyberAware Resilience gives users access to consistent situational awareness over their cyber landscape. The reports produced provide actionable information about present vulnerabilities across networks and can be run frequently.
This is an excellent tool for smaller businesses that haven’t invested in a sophisticated cyber security system. Cyber security often isn’t a priority for growing businesses, but these environments with multiple document sharing and communication systems, informal technology processes, or no cyber training, are highly vulnerable to attack.
CyberAware Resilience gives these users a foundation of cyber resilience, helping to educate users on their network landscape and providing proactive and low-maintenance actions, as analysis can be running in the background or while offline.
Want to know more about CyberAware Resilience?
Book a CyberAware Resilience Demo now and discover how it can enhance your cyber security.