Patch Validation And The Enterprise – Chuck Leaver

Written By Logan Gilbert And Presented By Chuck Leaver

 

Intro

A current report suggests almost twenty thousand new software application vulnerabilities were discovered in 2017 – an all-time record. Think about that for a minute. That’s approximately fifty five new vulnerabilities each day. That’s a large amount for any IT shop to manage.

Now there’s good news and bad news. The bright side is that patches were offered for 86% of those vulnerabilities on the day of disclosure. The bad news is that most organizations continue to struggle with patch prioritization, application, and validation. And as IT workloads progressively move to the cloud, vulnerability visibility tends to decrease – worsening a currently tough problem.

Let’s take a more detailed look at ways to manage cloud patch validating successfully.

Initially, a Patch Management Guide

Patch management is the practice of updating software with code modifications that deal with vulnerabilities exploitable by cyber assailants. Although it’s been around for decades, patch management remains a challenging process for many IT organizations.

Modern enterprises have complicated IT environments with numerous integration points in between business systems. That means it is hard for software application developers to represent all unintentional repercussions, e.g., a condition that could close a port, disable critical infrastructure communication, or even crash its host server.

And focusing on the effective patching of recognized vulnerabilities is the unquestionable ‘big bang for the buck’ play. In 2017, Gartner reported ninety nine percent of exploits are based upon vulnerabilities that have actually currently been understood to IT and security professionals for at least one year.

Cloud Patching Basics

The very first key to closing down the correct vulnerabilities in your cloud IT infrastructure is being able to see everything. Without being able to see into your cloud systems and applications, you cannot truly know if both those systems and applications are patched where it is essential. The 2nd key is patch validating. Merely firing off a patch is no warranty that it triggered properly. It may, or might not, have deployed successfully.

How would you know?

The Ziften Approach

Ziften provides the visibility and validation you need to ensure your cloud IT environment is safe and protected from the vulnerabilities that matter:

– In-depth capture of discovered OS and application vulnerabilities

– Findings mapped to vulnerability insight references, e.g., OWASP, CIS, CVE, CWE, and OSVDB

– Detailed descriptions of the implications of findings, business impacts, and dangers for each of the determined exposures

– Vulnerability prioritization based upon asset criticality and threat of attack

– Remediation recommendations to close identified deficiencies

– Detailed steps to follow while alleviating reported shortages

– Detection and mitigation of attacks that take advantage of unpatched systems with quarantine procedures

Far too frequently we discover that the data from customer’s patching systems improperly report that vulnerabilities are undoubtedly patched. This develops a false sense of security that is inappropriate for IT operations and security operations teams.

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