Continuous Vulnerability Management - Complexities of the Remediation Process
The Center for Internet Security (CIS) describes Continuous Vulnerability Management as “a plan to continuously assess and track vulnerabilities on all enterprise assets within the enterprise’s infrastructure, to remediate, and minimize, the window of opportunity for attackers. Monitor public and private industry sources for new threat and vulnerability information.”
Cyber defenders must have timely threat information about software updates, patches, security advisories, threat bulletins, etc. They should consistently review their IT environment to look for these vulnerabilities before cybercriminals do.
Managing and understanding vulnerabilities is a continuous activity, requiring the focus of time, attention, and dedicated resources.
Organizations face challenges in scaling remediation across an entire enterprise, and prioritizing actions with conflicting priorities, while not impacting the enterprise’s business or mission.
Often, remediating vulnerabilities requires expertise beyond the deployment of a simple patch.
For example, a configuration change and deploying a patch to remediate the Spectre/Meltdown vulnerability are required. Also, vulnerabilities need different types of patches- for example, some need an update to a customer software or a registry key change without a patch.
Researching, understanding, and mapping the vulnerabilities to the remediation actions are complex and time-consuming tasks. Many organizations fail to complete this process quickly and efficiently because they don’t have an expert and dedicated team that can map the vulnerabilities to the proper remediation and, at the same time, evaluate the potential operational risk introduced by changes to the environment.
Organizations can minimize operational risk by moving towards a proactive remediation approach. This approach demands selecting the right vulnerability management solution that will deliver the capability to streamline the remediation process by automatically mapping the vulnerability to the correct patch(es) required in your specific environment.
Additionally, the solution should also streamline the application of patches for compliance by creating a zero-touch patch job to automate vulnerability remediation based on criteria that apply uniquely to your organization. This should reduce operational risk and remediation time, helping security teams align with regulatory and internal security policies.
Finally, the solution must make sure that endpoints are quickly and consistently patched, via the cloud, regardless of their location or connection to an organization’s network, which reduces the cost of securing a primary vector of attack. Eliminating the need to go over VPN for patching can save time and significantly reduce costs.