Risk-Based Vulnerability Management

04.12.2019 Read
Risk-Based Vulnerability Management

As the traditional vulnerability management practices become more inefficient each day, a new approach to vulnerability management gains more importance: Risk-based vulnerability management. In this article, we will take a closer look at what risk-based vulnerability management is, and how it can be useful for organization. Each day, cyber attackers and hackers employ more advanced techniques. As a result, the number and level of sophistication of cyber attacks continue to increase. In such an environment, the traditional approaches to vulnerability management become inefficient and even obsolete while risk-based vulnerability management practices gain popularity. In this article, we will discuss risk-based vulnerability management in detail and provide you with a list of simple actions that you can take for a better vulnerability management protocol.

What is a vulnerability?

A vulnerability is a weak spot on the façade of your defense systems. They are the most targeted aspects of your security measures since it is easier to exploit a vulnerable spot and gain unauthorized access than trying to penetrate through a well-built wall. Thus, vulnerabilities of your organization must be alleviated as quickly as possible in order to keep your assets and data safe. Vulnerability management is the umbrella term for all the practices that aim to detect and solve vulnerabilities that threaten the security of your organization.

What is the risk-based vulnerability management?

There is no system or security measure that is a hundred per cent safe. Each software, firewall, or preventive procedure have their weaknesses. The aim of vulnerability management is to detect weaknesses and strengthen them, or in other words, keep the possibility of a data breach as close to zero as possible. Risk-based vulnerability management, on the other hand, is a smarter approach to vulnerability management. It focuses on more imminent threats and more valuable assets. With the risk-based approach, your cyber security team uses their time and resources more efficiently and makes sure that the most important assets are the most protected ones.

What are the essentials of risk-based vulnerability management?

A proper vulnerability management solution must be able to answer the needs of your organization. In order to do so, it must be able to detect and prioritize the most essential aspects. Below you can find 6 key steps to turn your traditional vulnerability management protocol into a risk-based one.

  1. Implement an automatic discovery and inventory protocol that successfully covers all assets of your organization, applications, software, devices and users of these.
  2. Make sure that your cyber security measures have the capability to cover all types of attack and threats. Most traditional vulnerability management solutions solemnly detect and scan vulnerabilities, yet what you need is a solution that is also capable of taking the necessary actions to solve such security issues.
  3. The visibility of your assets is a key component. Make sure that all types of assets including but not limited to IoT, cloud, BYOD and third party software are covered.
  4. A proper risk-based vulnerability management solution must continuously oversee all assets in real time.
  5. Prioritize your assets. Have the grasp of which assets are the most essential, and which assets are absolutely necessary for your organization to keep doing business.
  6. Find unique solutions for each threat and document every security incident along with your solutions for that incident. Such records can come in handy in the event of similar threats’ happening.