Becrypt signs new SME partnership with Atos UK » London, UK:  Becrypt has entered into a partnership with Atos UK as part of the Atos SME Harbour pro... itSoft extends its security-as-a-service offerin... » Clavister has announced that itSoft, a leading ISP and cloud managed services provider in Croatia, h... AppRiver quarantines 200 million malicious emails ... » Gulf Breeze, FL and London, UK: AppRiver, LLC has released its Q1 Global Security Report, a detailed... DDoS attacks pose biggest threat yet to European... » LONDON, UK: Neustar, Inc has announced findings from its third annual DDoS Attacks & Impact Report. ... SearchYourCloud announces enhanced search and se... » SearchYourCloud: has announced a relationship with Pivotal, the software company at the intersection... EnterpriseDB’s new Postgres Cloud Database expan... » Bedford, MA:  EnterpriseDB (EDB) has announced expanded data encryption for its Postgres Plus Cloud ... Cubic to exhibit Next-Generation Virtual Training ... » SAN DIEGO, Calif.: Cubic Global Defense will demonstrate a range of innovative technologies and solu... Adapt and Alert Logic partner to bring SaaS soluti... » Adapt and Alert Logic have joined forces to bring Adapt customers a suite of advanced managed securi... Cryptzone is a 2015 top company to watch in the Cy... » Boston, MA: With cybercrime on the rise and costing organizations billions of dollars annually, it’s... Dimension Data launches new assessment to help org... » Fleet, Hants, UK:  Dimension Data has announced a new assessment offering that helps organisations a...

CLICK HERE TO

Advertise with Vigilance

Got News?

Got news for Vigilance?

Have you got news/articles for us? We welcome news stories and articles from security experts, intelligence analysts, industry players, security correspondents in the main stream media and our numerous readers across the globe.

READ MORE

Subscribe to Vigilance Weekly

Information Security Header

Computer security is a field where the goal posts are constantly moving, as malware morphs in an attempt to outsmart the defences you put in place. While security professionals have recognised for a long time that unwanted software, often in the form of Trojans and worms usually installed by users when tricked by some form of social engineering, presents the biggest risk to security, it’s only now that compliance mandates are catching up and are being developed based on real-world attack data.

Australia’s Department of Defence Intelligence Agency produced a report of mitigation strategies using research on attacks carried out in 2010, and later updated in 2011. It concluded that 85 per cent of attacks could have been prevented if its top 4 recommendations had been followed. These top 4 recommendations are known as the security ‘sweet spot’:

· use application whitelisting to help prevent malicious software and other unapproved programs from running.

· patch applications such as PDF readers, Microsoft Office, Java, Flash Player and web browsers.

· patch operating system vulnerabilities.

· minimize the number of users with administrative privileges.

“The Australian government has already implemented the report’s recommended strategies to good effect, allowing only whitelisted applications to run and removing administrative privileges wherever possible,” said Paul Kenyon, COO at Avecto. “Application whitelisting and privilege management can help avoid the inconvenient trade-off in usability that security measures often impose. This way IT administrators can remove administrative privileges and block restricted applications while ensuring that users have the flexibility to work as required.”

The UK government’s Public Services Network (PSN) has a new set of standards that replaced the Government Secure Intranet Code of Connection (GSi CoCo) in November 2012. Based on ISO 27001, the new controls are outcome-based so that government departments can comply how they see fit rather than check a list of technical requirements. The PSN Standards list of configuration controls includes preventing the execution of unauthorized software, best achieved through application whitelisting, and explicitly states that administrative privileges should be removed where possible.

Not all the latest security mandates are coming from the government. The SANS institute has created its own list of 20 controls in consortium with government and industry bodies. As expected, included in the controls is the removal of administrative privileges, and though application whitelisting isn’t explicitly mentioned, the secure configuration of workstations and servers is a key priority.

“Most current security mandates imply that least privilege should be deployed rather than state it explicitly. But as the importance of least privilege becomes better understood, that’s starting to change. Whether you need to comply with current or future mandates, least privilege security is a defence strategy that cannot be ignored if you need to meet basic compliance requirements,” said Kenyon.