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The Importance of Solid Cyber Security Incident Response – A Reminder

CyberTech Conference a Reminder of the Importance of Solid Cyber-Security Incident ResponseThe Ayehu team recently participated in the annual CyberTech conference. The original purpose of our attendance was to share information about the eyeShare product through networking and interactive demonstrations. What really occurred there, however, went well beyond product demos and handshakes. We came away with an even greater realization of the critical importance of cyber security incident response, and a renewed dedication to helping organizations protect themselves and their sensitive data against would-be attackers.

As we are all well aware, cyber-attacks aren’t going away any time soon. In fact, they continue to increase in frequency while also becoming much more sophisticated. Traditional methods for monitoring and managing incidents are simply no longer adequate. If businesses are to remain secure, they’ll need to arm themselves with a cyber security incident response strategy that leverages advanced technology to match threats head-on.

One thing that struck us as we discussed the topic of security with conference attendees was the surprising number of organizations that still believe a basic monitoring system is enough. This might have been true a decade ago, but not anymore. The fact is, even the most highly-skilled IT department personnel cannot keep up with the volume of attacks that are coming in at an alarming rate. And as we witness in news reports on an almost weekly basis, all it takes is one legitimate threat that slips through to wreak havoc.

Savvy IT leaders recognize that even the best system can have flaws and vulnerabilities. That’s why integration is so important. For instance, we recommend integrating existing monitoring and alert management platforms with an automation tool that provides more of a closed-loop process. This ensures that every incident detected is instantly and thoroughly assessed, verified and prioritized and that the appropriate steps are taken to resolve the situation accordingly. Essentially, automation provides the added level of protection necessary to fortify cyber security incident response.

As part of our ongoing commitment to delivering the highest quality IT process automation products with special attention paid to security, Ayehu has officially joined the Intel Security Innovation Alliance program. As part of this partnership, we will be integrating our IT process automation software with McAfee Enterprise Security Manager™ (ESM). This integration will enable IT professionals to automate and streamline security policy tasks, such as incident response, in a more efficient and effective manner.

As we reflect on all that we learned at this year’s CyberTech conference, we are honored to be playing a role in helping businesses of every shape, size and industry develop and implement cyber security incident response strategies that are both reliable and effective.

Is your plan strong enough to withstand the cyber-attacks that are inevitably to come? The time to get it right is now – before your organization becomes the next victim.

Get started today by downloading your free 30 day trial of eyeShare.





eBook: 5 Reasons You Should Automate Cyber Security Incident Response




Automation of Cyber Security Incident Response: What You Need to Know

Automation of Cyber Security Incident Response: What You Need to KnowThese days, it seems there’s a high profile security breach in the news almost daily. The truth is, cyber-attacks happen to businesses of every size, shape and industry and just because the story may not make the news, the ramifications can be nothing short of devastating. Organizations are under increasing pressure to ensure that when (not if) an attack occurs, they are fully prepared to respond swiftly and effectively to mitigate any potential damages. Let’s take a look at the role automation can and should play in your cyber security incident response strategy.

Without automation, monitoring and managing incidents is up to IT personnel – a team that is most likely already overworked and completely overwhelmed. Given the enhanced sophistication and ever-increasing number of today’s attacks, and the budgetary restraints most organizations are under which limits their staffing potential, the results of a breach could be catastrophic. Here are just a few of the problems that can arise when cyber security incident response is handled manually:

  • Difficulty keeping up with volume of incoming threats
  • Errors due to miscommunication and confusion
  • Lack of adequate, real-time visibility
  • Inexperience with significant and/or high-pressure events
  • Missed or delayed response
  • Increased expenses

The larger the organization, the greater the risk, as the number and complexity of incoming incidents are naturally higher. Still, even small to mid-sized companies must be vigilant about protecting their assets from a potential virtual attack. Hiring additional staff is typically not an option, and as seen in the list above, even when staffing levels are adequate, human error can be a real issue. That’s why automation is so effective.

The fact is, cyber criminals do not discriminate. Your staffing woes or lack of adequate protection could make you a prime target for an attack. Do you have a plan in place? By incorporating automation into your cyber security incident response strategy, you remove the human element from the equation. Not only does this dramatically speed up the process, but it also eliminates the risk of costly human error.

From a reactive standpoint, the moment a potential incident is detected, your automated system will immediately identify and evaluate it for legitimacy and severity. This process will occur each and every time a threat comes in, even if there are thousands a day – something human personnel simply cannot handle. Depending on the outcome of each threat’s analysis, the system will then automatically trigger the appropriate response.

To address the limitations of traditional, manual cyber security incident response, automation presents the following quantifiable benefits:

  • Ability to integrate seamlessly with existing systems (SIEM, monitoring programs, malware analysis, etc.)
  • Reduces risk of any threats slipping through the cracks
  • Provides real-time visibility and control
  • Ability to automate everything from simple tasks to complex workflows
  • Saves time, money and resources

Furthermore, with the right automation tool, previous incidents can be analyzed by IT leaders to help identify and define best practices going forward. This provides the ability to take a proactive approach to cyber security incident response, which can help prevent certain attacks from occurring in the first place.

Is your business truly prepared for potential cyber incidents?

If you’re not yet leveraging the power of automation in this area, you are most definitely at a greater risk.

Don’t take chances. Download your free trial of eyeShare today.





eBook: 5 Reasons You Should Automate Cyber Security Incident Response




7 Must-Ask Questions about Cyber Security Incident Response

7 Must-Ask Questions about Cyber Security Incident ResponseOne only needs to read the latest headlines in the news to recognize the growing risk of cyber threats. With big name brands routinely falling victim to online criminals and millions of consumers subsequently suffering the consequences, it’s becoming abundantly clear that cyber security incident response is something every business must make a priority. Not sure where your organization stands? Here are 7 questions you should be asking to avoid becoming the next victim.

1. Who is responsible for my organization’s cyber security?

First and foremost, is there a team in place that has cyber security incident response
on their to-do list? If not, it’s time to sit down with your IT department and get things moving in the right direction.

2. Are we fully aware of what’s at stake?

In order to protect your organization’s infrastructure, it’s critical that those in charge of cyber security incident response have a clear and accurate picture of precisely what the network and other assets to be protected include. In other words, you must know ahead of time what’s at risk if you are to take a proactive approach to security.

3. What kind of plan do we have for monitoring threats?

In most cases, cyber incidents can be prevented or addressed before they have a chance to cause significant harm – provided, of course, that there’s an adequate plan in place for identifying these threats in a timely manner.

4. What happens to those threats once they’re detected?

The reason why many organizations have fallen victim to cyber criminals isn’t due to lack of threat detection, but rather lack of action taken once a risk is identified. Leveraging tools like automation can help fortify cyber security incident response by ensuring that every single incoming threat is assessed and prioritized.

5. Do we have the resources to handle cyber-attacks?

Another issue behind successful cyber security breaches is the fact that even the largest organizations simply do not have the manpower to keep up with the number and complexity of incoming risks. Again, this is where automation technology can complete the puzzle – without having to hire additional staff.

6. What is our policy for preventing future attacks?

An important yet often overlooked component of cyber security incident response is the identification and documentation of best practices for handling future problems. This can help thwart future breaches before they can succeed.

7. Where do we begin?

If you’re not completely confident you’ve got the right answers for any of the above questions, chances are your organization is dangerously vulnerable. Contact us today and let’s discuss how our tools can help establish and/or strengthen your cyber security incident response plan so it’s most effective.





eBook: 5 Reasons You Should Automate Cyber Security Incident Response




How Netflix Leverages IT Process Automation to Protect Its Information

How Netflix Leverages Automation to Protect Its InformationWith more than 62 million subscribers worldwide, it’s no wonder digital services company Netflix has to focus on keeping up a fast-paced, secure IT operations environment. The engineers who work for the streaming media organization are faced with the task of deploying code thousands upon thousands of times each and every day. How do they maintain such a high level of output? Well, one thing they’ve come to rely on is IT process automation.

The very nature of Netflix’s industry makes the company and its clientele much more vulnerable to cyber security attacks. And, as many other significant-sized enterprises have learned the hard way over the past decade or so, having a monitoring system in place simply isn’t always enough to achieve optimum protection levels.

What companies like Netflix need is a more comprehensive and closed-loop process that handles potential risks from start to completion. More importantly, these businesses must find a way to achieve this goal while balancing tight budgetary restraints and increasing demands for better, faster service. In other words, they must figure out a way to do more with less while also always maintaining the greatest level of cyber security.

As Netflix has discovered, IT process automation can provide the ideal solution to this need. Jason Chan, cloud security architect for Netflix, knew he and his team were facing a monumental task, particularly given the significant and speedy growth the company has sustained, stating that: “The only realistic way of maintaining security in an environment that grows so rapidly and changes so quickly is to make it automation first.”

Today, Netflix leverages IT process automation to perform and complete a broad spectrum of both routine and complex tasks and workflows.

Whether it’s identifying subscriber accounts that have been compromised or prioritizing and responding to incoming security incidents, automation plays a central role. In fact, the technology has virtually eliminated the need for human interaction (at least on a basic level), thereby reducing error rates while dramatically improving efficiency levels.

The company’s internal cyber-security system continuously monitors the platform for any changes which may indicate a potential breach. From there, the system then automatically determines the level of risk and, if necessary, notifies the appropriate team member that a change has been detected. For serious threats, the right human worker is made aware of the issue in a timely and effective manner so that it can be addressed immediately, thereby mitigating any potential damages.

In some instances, human intervention is completely unnecessary. For example, one monitoring tool Netflix employs can automatically identify a security problem, such as a compromised employee account, and isolate the concern and facilitate the appropriate action plan for dealing with the situation. When a security alert is received, the system goes through a series of workflows to establish precisely what’s happened and how severe the problem may be. If it’s determined that a certain action should be taken, such as disabling a compromised account, the IT process automation tool can execute that task accordingly.

Furthermore, IT process automation provides the added level of protection a digital firm like Netflix (or any business, for that matter) needs in order to prevent potential security breaches. Even without budgetary constraints, most IT departments simply do not have the capacity to handle the volume and complexity of incoming threats. This is when things get missed. Automation, on the other hand, can be the safety net, ensuring that no threat slips by undetected.

Finally, it’s important to mention that IT process automation isn’t meant to replace human workers, but rather – as Mr. Chan points out – to make life easier. “You really need to help get what’s most important in front of people as quickly and easily as possible, so you’re using your human resources as effectively as possible.”

How secure is your business against cyber threats? Could IT process automation be the missing link for you just as it has been with Netflix?

Check out these 5 compelling reasons you should automate your incident response process





eBook: 5 Reasons You Should Automate Cyber Security Incident Response




How to Use Automation to Thwart Cyber Security Attacks

How to Use Automation to Thwart Cyber Security AttacksCyber security attacks are nothing new to the business world. One need only look to news reports from recent months to see that these types of serious breaches are occurring on an ever-increasing basis. Furthermore, they’re also increasing in severity and complexity. For organizations that are ill-prepared for such imminent threats, the results can be nothing short of catastrophic. The good news is, there is a highly effective tool that can stop a cyber attack in its tracks: automation. Here’s how.

Cyber security attacks are occurring on a daily basis, and they’re affecting businesses great and small. What’s more, with the savvy criminals behind these attacks becoming more skilled at avoiding detection and gaining access to the sensitive data they’re after, companies must be able to anticipate the risks and act accordingly to mitigate damages. This is made even clearer when one considers that a successful breach can occur in mere moments while the subsequent clean-up can take months or even years to complete.

Now consider even more sobering data. In 2012, the United States alone saw an increase in mobile malware of 400%. Targeted cyber attacks also went up by 42% and the number of records compromised as a result of a security breach rose by 300%. These shocking numbers represent a digital world that is constantly evolving. As technology advances, cyber security incident response strategies must stay a step ahead of the game. Automation can provide the missing puzzle piece needed to achieve this goal.

The first step is evaluating your monitoring system. Like it or not, with the increase in threats, unless you have a solid system in place to effectively identify these risks as they occur, you’re more vulnerable than you may think. Furthermore, even the most well-staffed IT department is no match for the volume of incoming incidents. The key is developing a cyber security incident response plan that integrates a quality monitoring system with the automation necessary to keep on top of incoming threats.

Adequate risk management requires automation technology that can adapt in real-time so that the moment a potential risk is detected, it is immediately analyzed. From there, should action be necessary, incidents must be prioritized based on threat-level and sent along the appropriate channels so they can be addressed accordingly. Responses can either be triggered automatically or can be escalated to be handled via human intervention if need be. All of this must occur 24/7 in order to stay ahead of the game, something most businesses do not have the resources to handle without automation.

The key to an effective cyber security incident response strategy is closing the gap between detection and response. It’s becoming increasingly evident that traditional incident management plans which depend on manual intervention are simply no longer capable of keeping up with the frequency, speed and versatility of cyber attacks. Simply put, new risks require a new way of thinking and automation is proving to be the key to stopping incidents in their tracks.

How solid is your cyber security incident response plan? Download your free trial of eyeShare today to learn how automation can provide you with the tools you need to keep your organization safe for years to come.





eBook: 5 Reasons You Should Automate Cyber Security Incident Response




How to Be More Proactive with Your Cyber Security Incident Response

How to Be More Proactive with Your Cyber Security Incident ResponseIt’s been proven time and time again that taking a reactive approach to cyber security incident response is an exercise in futility. Just ask Target or any number of other big-name brands that have suffered monetary and reputational damage at the hands of a security breach. With criminals becoming savvier by the day, organizations simply must take a more proactive approach to not just dealing with incoming threats as they occur, but actually thwarting them ahead of time.

The first step involves creating a more closed-loop system. That is, having a plan in place that not only identifies potential incidents, but carries through with the appropriate action accordingly. One of the biggest reasons cyber-attacks are successful is because the victim didn’t have such a strategy in place at the time of the incident. Even in cases where a threat is actually detected, it is often allowed to slip by due to the sheer volume of incoming alerts and the limitations of traditional IT departments.

To be truly effective, a cyber security incident response plan must cover every angle of the alert process. A quality monitoring system is great, but what if that system fails to adequately identify and prioritize a serious threat? To make this type of set up more proactive, automation can be integrated so that any and all incidents that occur and are picked up by the monitoring system can then be properly addressed, either automatically or via human intervention following the escalation and notification process.

In a recent survey conducted by the SANS Institute, all trends indicate widespread improvements are being made in cyber security incident response strategies across the board. Most survey respondents credited automation for these incremental improvements, but also admit that they still have quite a ways to go to reach full maturity. Advancements in skills as well as tools and technologies being leveraged and a more integrated approach are all needed in order to achieve optimum security levels.

The survey also revealed that four of the top issues relating to incident response include: lack of adequate system visibility (45%), inability to properly distinguish incidents (37%), too much time for remediation (29%) and lack of integrated, automated tools (28%). Further complicating matters is the increase in personal mobile device usage in the workplace. As more organizations adopt and roll out BYOD policies, the risk of security breaches multiplies exponentially.

Automation can provide the solution needed by offering enhanced visibility and faster, more accurate and effective response and remediation to cyber-attacks.

In conclusion, it is becoming more evident by the day that cyber-attacks are increasing, both in number and complexity. Traditional reactive cyber security incident response plans are no longer a match for these evolving risks. Only those organizations that adapt accordingly and take on a proactive approach to handing incidents will remain secure against such attacks.

Is your business ready for automated cyber security incident response?

Could automation provide your company with the added level of protection needed over the coming months and years?

Request a live demo today to get started!





eBook: 5 Reasons You Should Automate Cyber Security Incident Response