The people at Information Is Beautiful created a very interesting visual representation of the worlds biggest data breaches found HERE. The criterial to make this list is being a company that experienced losses greater than 30,000 records during a data breach. Each bubble represents a company and can be clicked to bring up data about the breached as well as a link to the original report covering the incident. The next examples show clicking the recent Home Depot breach to pull up the quick info and detailed article. There is a filter on the right used to tune into what you want to view. Pretty cool little tool. Continue reading
There are many reasons people invest in security. The best reason is having the desire to avoid being breached however sometimes wanting the best security doesn’t justify the investment. Many decision makers have to juggle improving the infrastructure, investing in the latest flashy technology such as high end video, etc. along with keeping things secure. Usually the flashy stuff outshines security until something with teeth forces the focus back on security. A prime example is meeting mandated regulatory compliance. Being out of compliant to many regulations could mean pricy fines as well as possibly litigation actions. This is good news for the IT guy that wants to get his security budget requests placed at the top of the stack.
Sarah Williams wrote a great article on my buddies blog about a recent breach in cloud security storage that exposed naked photographs of famous actors. The original post can be found at drchaos’s website HERE.
The Cloud storage option is fast becoming one of the most popular and effective methods of storing essential data that you definitely can’t afford to lose. From small to medium-sized business, cloud storage has helped owners save time and money in their businesses when it comes to IT.
But exactly how safe is the cloud? Though most reliable cloud service providers have cutting edge security, many IT experts say the cloud system is not entirely safe. Continue reading
NSS Labs just released a new set of reports covering Web Application Firewalls. Those reports can be found at NSS labs website HERE. There is a cost for these reports however it is worth the investment if you are looking to purchase a new firewall. Also, Palo Alto tested poorly and due to the back and forth between both companies, NSS labs is offering the Palo Alto report for free. Continue reading
Detecting threats on endpoints like laptops and mobile devices is important but not enough to defend against the threats we see against our users. Reason why is Anti-Virus and host IPS/IDS can only scan for so many signatures and leverage so many behavior checks before they must let the traffic go through or it will impact the user experience. This is why many users get compromised by clicking the wrong email, accessing the wrong website, share the wrong USB drive and so on. Detection needs to extend beyond the doorway and look at files that have breached a host’s defense to determine if that system has been compromised as well as offer a method to remediate the entire outbreak. Continue reading
Many industries rely on revenue generated by sales and if credit is used, Payment Card Industry (PCI) compliance is mandated. This includes all industries that process, store or transmit credit card information. Like any compliancy standard, this is the minimal level of real security and should not be considered the goal to protect sensitive data. All compliance mandates that matter must go through various review and audit processes that take time and cause the results to be dated compared to the speed of new attacks you should expect against your network. This means meeting mandates such as PCI should just be part of your overall security strategy. Continue reading
I’m often asked “why did my system get infected when I had the latest system updates and anti-virus enabled?” Well, a fundamental concept behind security products is they can only look for so many things or use so many detection techniques before they must permit traffic. This means your defenses will fail if an attack uses a method that your detection system can’t see or scanner does not have an existing signature to scan against. This is why attackers hide exploits using techniques such as obfuscation to bypass security detection. Continue reading
There are many SIEM solutions available however I was extremely impressed with recent innovations from Splunk regarding a free Application that can be used to centralize security data from multiple cisco solutions. By definition, a security information and event monitoring system aka SIEM is typically just that; either a good information sorting tool or solution that helps identify and react to events.
One of Splunk’s key market differentiators is their extensive application library developed by customers and Splunk engineering. These applications turn the traditional SIEM into a business enabler to meet specific use cases. Splunk has developed cisco applications in the past however recently face-lifted the cisco Security Application to include Cisco access control (ISE), email security (ESA), web security (WSA), Cisco firewalls, and even SourceFire (both network and only SIEM as of today to support malware aka AMP). This application can link findings with other vendor data such as taking ISE context (IE Joey’s windows 7 laptop on port 1/0/14) and matching it to any captured log by Splunk (For example a McAfee IPS event). This provides a true centralized view of data across a network.
F5 just announced they are acquiring Defense.net. Distributed Denial of Service or DDoS is an attacks that attempts to make a server or a network resource unavailable to users (more on launching and preventing DoS and DDoS can be found HERE). Many sources such as the latest Verizon Breach Report as well as some of my customers are seeing a rise in this form of attack. Typically, DDoS / DoS attacks are volumetric meaning they are caused by a ton of systems targeting a specific server, which is hard to defend against. For this reason, the DDoS /DoS vendors are seeing an increase in Interest such as Arbor, Radware and now Defense.net. Continue reading