Tag: leadership

Defense

I’m the CEO, why should I care about Cyber…

Introduction

First and foremost, I’m going to start by saying if I include any cliché quotes it’s probably in an ironic context or used to show how they aren’t practically useful. Why are we here? Well, based on the title, it’s because you are either a CEO/MD or you are in a leadership position and want to learn a little more about cyber security.

I’m sure you have read the news, I’m sure you have seen vendor adverts explaining something like:

  • Zero Trust
  • The Security Skills Gap
  • How phishing can be solved through security awareness training (pro tip: it can’t)

And I’m sure someone on your LinkedIn feed you have seen people exclaim all kinds of crazy things like:

  • TLS Weaknesses Lead to Ransomware
  • Security is Simple (it, I’m afraid, is not)
  • Managed Security Service Providers ensure security

Read more “I’m the CEO, why should I care about Cyber Security?”

Leadership

The Security Challenges of 2021

The gaps between strategic security improvement and keeping the wolves out, today!

The Cyber Realities in 2021

Most organisations today honestly don’t have great cyber security postures. Cyber security has improved since the 80’s and 90s’s but still common gaps can be found in the same old areas.

So, whilst security possibilities and technical capabilities for defence have greatly improved, this hasn’t really translated into the level of change we would like to see on the ground inside organisations.

I’m writing this post after giving a talk today about the challenges I see in cyber security across different organisations but also after watching a talk by Dave Kennedy which from my perspective emulates my experiences and largely my views. Read more “The Security Challenges of 2021”

Defense

Phishing your own people – path to eroding trust…

Introduction

“Security education and awareness darling, it’s all the rage! It’s simply to hot right now.” Ok stop, let’s take a minute to get some context. It’s the year 2021, organisations are taking a battering round the globe from cyber criminals who are deploying ransomware, extortion, and fraud via a range of methods but one you can’t not have heard of is phishing.

In this post today, I’m going to look at realities of initial access, phishing and some questions I think people should be asking themselves about the idea of phishing their own userbase. I try and look at this from multiple perspectives because I think it’s a complex subject. Let’s start with initial access methods!

Common Patterns of Access

If we look at the world of technology and cyber security, you will see logs of references to frameworks and language that is enough to send even the committed to sleep! However, let’s abstract from our TTPs, our MITRE ATT&CK frameworks and our “threat actors” and let’s talk in normal English. Read more “Phishing your own people – path to eroding trust or a useful tool?”

Leadership

The problem with gatekeeping in the cyber security industry

Stark Realities

Imagine having an industry where you can’t be in it without already being an expert in all fields, imagine having to be able to command policy and drive strategy but not having anyone having ever helped you learn how to do this, imagine that if you did all the activities involved with secure service and yet people say you aren’t part of the industry because your job title doesn’t have the word “security” in it and imagine if that you are told you aren’t part of the cyber security industry because you also have to worry about budgets, sales, marketing, new business initiatives, IT services and well anything else!

What would happen if we had this as our cyber security industry principles… well that’s simple?

Read more “The problem with gatekeeping in the cyber security industry”

Leadership

The Art of Cyber

Cyber Security is an intersection of different activities, processes and capabilities. It uses skills from multiple traditional roles. As such the definition of it, often seems to lie in the reader. I did a poll the other day on twitter where ~30% of people thought a scenario I described wasn’t cyber because basically an “IT” person did the activity or they made assumptions that the IT person was told to do it (they were not). This led me to try and describe what Cyber means to me:

Read more “The Art of Cyber”
Defense

Cloud Security – 26 Foundational Security Practises and Capabilities…

That is quite the catchy title don’t you agree? Ok so that needs some work and when we think about cloud security, we need to realise that Computing as a Service isn’t a silver bullet.

One Cloud to Rule them all and in the darkness bind them

Ok so the cloud was promised as the saviour of IT and Cyber security but the promise vs the reality. Well, let’s be frank, they don’t really match up. But have no fear – secure cloud design is here (omg cringe)! Ok now we have that out of my system let’s look at some basic cloud security considerations to make when thinking about cloud services.

Checklist

Ok so the world doesn’t work with a checklist however, if you are like me you will want to use lists and aides to jog the little grey cells into action. Let’s think about cloud services and security: Read more “Cloud Security – 26 Foundational Security Practises and Capabilities Checklist”

Leadership

Measuring Cyber Defence Success

What does “good” cyber security look like? Sure, we can run a maturity assessment and see what good indicators are and we can create a baseline of our current state to establish where we are and what gaps we have (honestly in real terms this isn’t something to consider you should be doing this!) but how do we measure success in cyber security? Is every success an invisible outcome? Because one question that often comes to mind here is, just because we don’t see something, does that mean everything is ok? In the fast-paced world of cyber security, measuring success isn’t as easy as you would think. I’ll give an example of this, let’s say we don’t monitor, we get breached, but the threat actor just performs crypto mining (let’s say this is on premises) and we never really notice in the grand scheme of the world that our energy consumption costs have increased, if we didn’t know this had occurred, we might think our security is good. Read more “Measuring Cyber Defence Success”

Guides

What if not everyone is a cyber expert?

Developing a Cyber Roadmap

Ok so this topic comes up a fair bit, but organisations and their management are often looking to ensure they are doing the right thing (no really this is a common phrase I hear with organisations) with regard to cyber security. THe challenge I think quite a few people have is even understanding what that even means. Sure you have a firewall, and antivirus and you had a yearly peneration test of a site that isn’t even touching your corproate network. You thought you were fine, but you keep seeing organisations get ransomared in the news and the board keep asking “are we ok?” so this then leads to a common position of maybe buying more widgets or thinking, well we haven’t been “hacked” so we must be doing ok.

Read more “What if not everyone is a cyber expert?”
Defense

Vulnerability Management – Actually doing it!

Vulnerability Management, Assessments and Vulnerability scanning is sometimes treated a with distain in the Offensive security community, I personally don’t understand that. Vulnerability management is key to inputting into security strategy, architecture, and operations. It’s coupled heavily to many other processes such as:

  • Asset Management
  • Risk Management
  • Patch Management
  • Change & Release Management
  • Security Testing
  • Security Monitoring

Before we start deploying let’s think about some areas for consideration when performing vulnerability scans:

  • Scope
    • Asset/Hosts
      • IP Ranges
      • Hostnames
    • Connectivity
      • VPNs
      • LAN/WAN
    • Device Types and Configuration
      • Domain
      • Workgroup
      • Appliance
      • ICS
      • Printers
      • Network Equipment
    • Unauthenticated View
    • Authenticated View
      • Auth Types
      • Protocols
    • Scheduling
    • Authority to execute
  • Impact
    • Performance
    • Availability
    • Confidentiality
  • Objectives and Outcomes
  • Reporting
    • Information Flow
    • Report Storage and Confidentiality

Read more “Vulnerability Management – Actually doing it!”

Leadership

There’s never any time – A mRr3b00t Adventure

Introduction

I’ve been working with technology and its security for a while, I have travelled to different parts of the world, I’ve worked with major organisations, and I’ve worked with a whole range of organisations both from strategic advisory and at the coal face perspective. Now over the last twenty years I thought about how much has changed… and honestly, I don’t think much has.

Technology innovation, miniaturisation and adoption rates are through the roof, but I still see massively similar patterns. I’m not going to try and quote statistics, but I think it’s a fair to say the threat landscape has changed somewhat (for the worse!)

Back in the 2000s era we had networks running Windows 2000 and Windows Server 2000/2003, we had clients with open services which could largely be accessed from anywhere on the network. We had host-based firewalls from third party vendors, but these were rarely implemented, MSBlaster and Windows XP changed this dynamic somewhat, to say things haven’t improved on one front would be a lie, however the level of crime and access to technology globally has changed massively. Read more “There’s never any time – A mRr3b00t Adventure”