Surprises are the number one factor that challenges corporations worldwide. They are surprised by the existence of back doors, data leaks, or various other security vulnerabilities. To minimize these surprises or eliminate them altogether, heads of companies are obligated to equip their businesses to stop them in their tracks. The best way to do this is to start off with a vulnerability audit.
In plain terms, a vulnerability audit helps enterprises secure sensitive, valuable, and vulnerable information that is part of a corporate network. Vulnerability audits are known for detecting hidden threats and weaknesses. In fact, addressing risks of any sort is futile without primarily establishing where the dangers lurk.
From using insecure HTTP protocols for accessing internal services to unencrypted email traffic, a vulnerability audit identifies the invisible threats that would otherwise reveal themselves only when it is too late.
As a matter of fact, organizations like SCS implement a combination of open-source intelligence, cyber capabilities, and human engineering to protect your corporate network.
Most Prevalent Threats Vs. Vulnerability Audit
Experts believe that around half a million new computer viruses are detected and created daily. A troubling statistic that should scare anybody working for enterprises of all sizes and shapes.
More than one billion malware programs exist globally at this point. It is thus an impossible task to secure your facility and assets for good. The threat landscape is constantly unfolding, with new risks potentially awaiting around the next corner.
Even though it is rather impossible to select the most potent risks, we will present those that can inflict plenty of damage.
Number 1: Remote Access
Remote access has always been an essential aspect of corporations seeking to allow seamless collaboration. Now more than ever before. Interestingly, as many as 67% of firms use Ammy Admin, TeamViewer, RAdmin, and other similar tools for this purpose.
The fundamental risk here is that malicious actors from anywhere on the planet can hack an employee’s personal computer. Next, they will almost effortlessly compromise a corporate network. This could result in millions of dollars in damage and client trust in shatters.
If a cyber intruder manages to access your corporate network, they will act as a trusted entity. Herewith, the malicious actor can read, surf, and scan the enterprise’s internal systems and move inside as they please. In fact, it does not matter for what purpose and how your company uses remote access tools. As soon as the hackers get a hold of them, they can wreak havoc.
Pro-tip: Unless necessary, avoid using remote access tools. If you must utilize any, focus on a single one. Also, create a software whitelist and restrict the access rights of local users. Software whitelisting entails formulating a list of trusted apps and allowing only a select few to operate on managed devices.
Number 2: Botnets
Cybersecurity experts believe that botnets are currently one of the most vicious threats on the internet. Unlike traditional malware, botnets trigger an excess of so-called Zombie computers. These conduct attacks with the aim to overwhelm the victim and force them to pay a ransom in order to reclaim control.
Any computer in your enterprise can fall prey to an attack of this kind. The quick solution here is to immediately remove the malicious software that is controlling your computer. You or your employees can do this by running an antivirus scan. However, this type of action is an ultima ratio, as your corporate network will already have been compromised.
Pro-tip: Use a vulnerability audit as a means of prevention. Remember that your company cannot employ it after a data breach has already taken its toll. The very design of a vulnerability audit puts it in a position to rob a future attacker of unprotected access points for exploitation. In other words, this type of scrutiny shrinks the space available for a malefactor to operate.
Number 3: Advanced Persistent Threats
Among the most lethal hazards to a corporate network comes in the form of advanced persistent threats. Specialists define APTs as cyberattacks calling for an unauthorized attacker to code their way into an unsuspecting system network. They remain there undetected for a while.
Called advanced for a reason, APTs employ a wide range of techniques to gain access to networks. By exploiting kits, using malware and other sophisticated methods, APTs allow attackers to make it past the network firewall. Their next step is then to patiently wait to discover login credentials.
As soon as they manage to obtain them, the APTs plunge deeper into the corporate network, thereby infecting other system segments. Known for their effectiveness, advanced persistent threats can compromise millions of data sets within a reasonably short period.
Pro-tip: As the handiwork of experienced attackers, APTs are remarkably difficult to detect. Nevertheless, we suggest that system administrators keep an eye on unusual patterns in network activity or massive amounts of data access.
Number 4: Rootkits
Similar to remote access issues, rootkits are a collection of malicious attackers’ tools on a network that they have started to exploit. Upon discovering a system security vulnerability, malefactors use the rootkit to allow remote access to the affected system and obtain administration-level access.
Some of the worst outcomes of this type of attack include password stealing, key-logging, and disabling of antiviruses. Rootkits are astonishingly hard to remove, even upon detection. Since no commercial products can find and successfully eliminate rootkits from system networks, corporations are left to fend off for themselves.
Alternatively, they hire companies who implement penetration testing and vulnerability audits to help their companies thrive safely.
Final Remarks on Conducting a Vulnerability Audit
Security concerns are not going anywhere any time soon. This is especially true for the corporate world. So, what should you do?
Thousands of companies nowadays benefit from software blocklists. These exist so that employees cannot visit specific questionable sites, install certain chat programs, download or use some torrents or remote access tools.
Although this surely helps, performing a vulnerability audit is far more effective and beneficial for any enterprise. From radically reducing malware activity to ramping up internal security, a vulnerability audit allows your company to focus on the work and not the emerging crises.
In numerous studies, experts detected suspicious network activity on the infrastructures of the vast majority of companies. No one is exempt, and everyone is exposed to the vile intentions of malefactors. Luckily, there is a method to confront them all, and it goes by the name of vulnerability audit.