The growing threat of cyberattacks, as well as increasingly strict standards like PCI DSS, HIPAA, and others, are forcing a greater focus on vulnerability management among enterprises. The process of finding, analyzing, categorizing, and remediating security vulnerabilities is an essential component of vulnerability management, which is a comprehensive approach.
In today’s environment, a continuous approach that offers knowledge of vulnerabilities such as log4shell and enables speedy repair is necessary to lower the attack surface of your system and the overall risk exposure it poses. In this article, we will go over the primary steps that will assist you in managing software vulnerabilities.
A vulnerability scanner is often the most critical element of a vulnerability management product. Vulnerability scanners can recognize a broad variety of operating systems that are present on a network. On recognized devices, a range of parameters, such as the operating system, open ports, installed applications, user accounts, file system structure, and system settings, are evaluated. This information is then used to link known vulnerabilities to the systems that have been examined. Vulnerability scanners will employ a vulnerability and exploit database to carry out this association.
For a vulnerability management system to work, the parameters of vulnerability scans must be set up in the right way. There is a chance that vulnerability scanners could cause problems with the networks and systems they are looking at. If a company’s network bandwidth drops a lot during its busiest times, vulnerability testing should be set up for when the network is less busy.
Once you’ve found every possible flaw in your system, you can figure out how dangerous potential attacks are. This measure helps you prioritize your security efforts and can accelerate the risk-reduction process.
You may reduce the risk of an attack while trying to protect the rest of your system by fixing the most significant vulnerabilities first and then working your way through the rest. Many ways may be utilized when assessing vulnerabilities to evaluate the possibility that a vulnerability will be exploited.
One such approach is the Common Vulnerability Scoring System (CVSS). This is a standard strategy that is utilized by several vulnerability databases and researchers. It calculates the level of vulnerability based on inherent characteristics, temporal features, and the specific impact of the vulnerability on your systems. One of the difficulties in evaluating priority using CVSS is that once a risk level is assigned, it cannot be modified. As a result, additional factors, such as threat intelligence and risk information particular to your company, must be considered.
The acquired data is then compiled into a custom report that details the vulnerabilities as well as how they should be prioritized. These reports will provide recommendations as well as the most effective technique for quickly and seamlessly triaging risks. It must outline the procedures that must be followed to resolve the problem and include the appropriate steps. The goal of this work is to significantly decrease the security risk provided by these vulnerabilities in a way that is relevant to real-world scenarios.
After figuring out which of your company’s flaws are the most dangerous, you must come up with a plan to fix them. In the case of third-party software, “remediation” means fixing the problem by doing something like installing a patch to fix the problem. Since repair is not always achievable, issue mitigation becomes important. This is when mitigation steps in. In general, the long-term remediation is the best option.
Rather than completely eradicating a vulnerability, the process of mitigating it entails making extra efforts, such as modifying configurations, to decrease the vulnerability’s harmful impacts. Patching is not usually a straightforward technique. It may probably result in downtime for critical corporate functions, which is undesirable, particularly during peak seasons such as the Christmas season for merchants. In situations like this, risk reduction methods might be used until repairs can be carried out.
Both remediation and mitigation will only apply to the vulnerabilities that are at the top of your priority list to be corrected after you’ve completed them. You can realize that a vulnerability is no longer relevant since it is not used in a live environment or because other settings have rendered it obsolete. Conversely, there may be vulnerabilities of low severity that do not require action.
The last step in a vulnerability management plan is to make sure that the vulnerabilities that were found have been addressed properly. It is possible to figure out how well the vulnerability management method works by seeing if each vulnerability that has been found has been fixed. Your IT teams will ultimately be able to perform more efficiently and safely with the help of adequate documentation of these gains since it will enable them to scale known solutions across rising IT environments.