Tag: leadership

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”

Defense

Changing a security posture requires changing your own behaviours

I’m sure you will have had a marketing firm or some random sales person on Linkedin tell you that security should be simple and that their product will save you from all the ATPs and nation state hax0rs under the sun. However let’s get real, thats almost certainly not true and also security isnt simple or we’d all be out of jobs and everyon woulndn’t be getting owned all the time.

Getting real

Read more “Changing a security posture requires changing your own behaviours”
Defense

Ransomware Realities

Everything is much worse now, or is it? 

”The world is burning, the world is burning but then if you look around, it always has been…” 

Computer systems and security go together much like chalk and cheese! Probably sounds a bit odd but miniaturization, consumerization and mobility have put more technology out in the world than we can really comprehend, yet technology security is still dramatically overlooked by most organizations. 

The insane pace of change, the drive for faster, better, cheaper and the reality that it probably isn’t a stretch to say most people (and organizations) do not really understand what ‘secure’ or ‘hardened’ looks like.

Read more “Ransomware Realities”
Defense

Ransomware Defence Checklist – Part 1 : Initial Access

Defending the Realm

We keep seeing organization get hit, in some kind of a sick way I think me and some of my friends in the industry are bored with the over dramatic responses of “sophisticated” “advanced” and “unpreventable” because most times the kill chains simply are not like this. But still the onslaught keeps coming. Well I know this much, whilst I would love to deploy with the team and harden everyone’s networks that simply isn’t possible. So what we thought we would do is write something to try and spread the knowledge a bit further and hopefully have some positive impact.

Ransomware 101

It’s not just that your data will be encrypted, it will likely be exfiltrated and sold. You will likely have access sold, data sold and be extorted. The Ransomware business model is adapting to defender responses. Even if you can restore from backup they will likely try and attempt to extort. This brings a key point in this equation, the best position is to NOT get pwn3d to start with. Ok that might sound silly to say but when we look at these kill chains you might start to see the world from my perspective a little. Read more “Ransomware Defence Checklist – Part 1 : Initial Access”

Defense

Cyber Security Assesments for Normal People

Ok so you might think I’m mad with the title but bear with me!

So, the world is in an interesting place, we’ve got a pandemic, we’ve got prolific cyber crime and we have all kinds of different views on how we should tackle this problem.

Now I love a framework and there’s ton’s of them. But the truth is they are complex, detailed, nuanced and generally require a level of nerd that a lot of organistaions do not have.

In 2020 during the pandemic I decided to try and write something to simplify this position, whilst I didn’t want to be too narrow, I wanted to try and capture the breadth of cyber security that is relevent to the general purpose organistaion. I came up with a set of 140 questions which I believe are a good take on things to consider and ask when conducting a security review at a high level. (yes 140 questions is a high level view, this stuff is complex as hell at the detailed end of things, and the devil is in the detail).

Read more “Cyber Security Assesments for Normal People”
Defense

Cyber Defence is Hard

Introduction

If you read a book about management theory or specifically cyber security management you will find lots of frameworks, methods, formulas, models etc. None of them really let you know how insanely hard it can be to defend a moving target where regardless of how many controls you have, all it takes it someone doing something which may seem bonkers to you but perfectly reasonable for them. Their objective is to do business in an efficient manner, your objective is to protect the business in an efficient manner. Fundamentally these two things are not at odds, but there are a lot of human factors that come into play on top of some serious technical challenges. Read more “Cyber Defence is Hard”