I am a Software Engineer at a large tech services company.
I am currently researching network security functions. What aspects of network security are more concerning to small and medium-sized enterprises?
Thank you for your help.
Regional Director at a tech company with 11-50 employees
Mar 23, 2023
Data breaches, malware, phishing attacks, weak passwords, insider threats, and lack of security policies are some of the most concerning aspects of network security for small and medium-sized enterprises since they may not have the same level of security measures and IT staff as larger corporations.
It's important for SMEs to identify and prioritize these risks and take steps to mitigate them to protect their business and customers' data.This could include implementing strong password policies, providing security awareness training for employees, implementing firewalls and antivirus software, and regularly backing up data. In addition, SMEs should develop formalized security policies and ensure that all employees understand and follow them to maintain a secure network environment.
If we are talking strictly about the network, the issue almost all SMEs suffer from is lack of risk visibility. Consider the risks and vulnerabilities that exist in the network from ports that are unsecured to firewall rules that are no longer effective to rogue devices that are connected and no one in IT is aware. If SMEs simply closed all of these gaps effectively, they would greatly reduce the chances that they are compromised. The second areas is threat visibility - meaning an actual attack unfolding. Once an attacker - say ransomware - bypasses an endpoint, they are free to waltz around the network for weeks. I think that latest dwell time number is over 4 weeks. Four weeks of recon, command calls, lateral movement, credential compromise, data location, etc. That is enough time to make the ransomware attack really hurt and find all the partner companies that the attacker can move to next. Most large companies have NDR in place to detect and stop attacks - greatly lowering that dwell time and damage - but SME's cannot afford most of those tools. There are new cloud-based NDR tools that are a lot less (CyGlass), and an there are great options with Managed Detection and Response (MDR) companies like Stratejm. Either path, SMEs need to deploy tools or services that watch the network for risks, vulnerabilities and threats.
Automating security for a CI/CD pipeline is essential in ensuring the safety and reliability of your applications. Security automation helps organizations automate the process of validating security policies, patching vulnerabilities, ensuring regulatory compliance with industry standards, and maintaining application integrity.
When considering automating security for your CI/CD pipeline there are three main components you should pay attention to: Policy Validation, Vulnerability Scanning & Patching, and Regulatory Compliance & Governance.
Policy Validation aims to ensure that all changes made during deployment align with existing organizational policies. Automated policy validation should use configuration management tools such as Ansible or Puppet to scan source code repositories like GitHub or GitLab for any changes made prior to deployments into production environments. This can be integrated into continuous integration pipelines so that any non-compliant changes are flagged before reaching an active environment.
Vulnerability Scanning & Patching ensures that any known vulnerabilities which may have been introduced via a new code commit or change in existing infrastructure configurations will be identified prior to deployment allowing appropriate remediation action to take place such as blocking the release until fixes can be applied or automatically applying patches where possible before the change is deployed in production environments. These activities can also be automated by integrating scanning tools such as Nmap directly into CI/CD pipelines so they execute at each stage performing active scans on exposed networks and services before allowing progression through the pipeline toward production systems.
Finally, Regulatory Compliance & Governance involves recognizing issues that require manual authorization from an administrator before consideration of an automated fix or deployment occurs (such as legal/privacy restrictions). It also includes monitoring external sources related to potential threats relevant specifically related to your organization (such as data breaches on other organizations), overseeing audit logs produced from actions taken within both source control platforms and cloud provider resources used within the CI/CD pipeline itself (for example developer keys used when accessing private resources). Automation here would include continually analyzing audit logs generated from activities performed throughout various stages of the delivery process permitting immediate detection of anomalies against expected behavior based on user roles assigned within each project being worked upon.
Network Security Services at ACE Managed Securty Services
Mar 20, 2023
When it comes to security and automation, there's no such thing as too much. That's why it makes sense to take steps to automate security for your CI/CD pipeline. Automation can help reduce the time spent on manual tasks and ensure that your code is secure before it makes its way into production. Here are some tips for automating security for your CI/CD pipeline:
1. Use a static application security testing (SAST) solution to scan code for vulnerabilities. SAST solutions can help identify and fix known issues quickly and efficiently.
2. Run regular scans of your codebase using a dynamic application security testing (DAST) tool. This will help identify any new security issues in real time.
3. Use a container scanning tool to check all your images and containers for vulnerabilities or misconfigurations. This will help ensure that no malicious code can enter the pipeline.
4. Utilize an API scanner to detect potential API vulnerabilities in your applications, such as SQL injection, cross-site scripting, and parameter tampering.
5. Implement a Web Application Firewall (WAF) to protect your applications from attacks like DDoS or brute force attacks. This can help prevent attackers from accessing sensitive information.
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