If you don’t test your security controls, you won’t truly know whether they are effective and strong enough to withstand modern cyber-attacks.
The big question is, how do you test your security controls’ effectiveness and strength?
The answer: Run breach and attack simulations.
Investing in new cybersecurity tech such as breach and attack simulation solutions sends real-world attacks to your security defenses, spots misconfigurations and vulnerabilities, and creates continuous security audits. In addition, if you need professional data access management services, you might want to visit this company website to learn more.
You’ll get a first-hand look into the many ways your security controls and, in turn, entire posture could be breached and weakened, including how hackers usually carry out the attacks.
You’ll have comprehensive, actionable insights to remediate the issues appropriately and promptly to keep your defenses strong and intact.
This guide covers five tips on how breach and attack simulations can help you assess your security controls for gaps and fortify your defenses.
What is Breach and Attack Simulation?
Breach and Attack Simulation (BAS) is an advanced security testing method.
BAS solutions mimic malicious actors’ likely techniques and attack paths to detect vulnerabilities in security controls and environments.
The technologies run automated and simulated attacks to measure a company’s threat and attack detection, mitigation, and prevention capabilities, testing the cyber defenses.
BAS platforms can:
- Launch a cyberattack on the company’s Web Application Firewall (WAF)
- Simulate phishing attacks on the company’s email systems
- Move laterally within networks to breach company information systems and databases
- Deploy malware attacks on endpoints
- Attempt data exfiltration
Most BAS solutions reference the MITRE ATT&CK® Framework to draw the tactics and techniques malicious actors will likely use. It helps make the simulations as close to real-life cyber attacks as possible.
BAS platforms can run 24/7 and provide automated alerts when network changes lead to potential security risks or vulnerabilities.
Advanced BAS solutions leverage Artificial Intelligence (AI) and machine learning technologies. These can launch more sophisticated attacks over time as the technology analyzes and learns from a company’s cybersecurity posture.
How BAS Fortifies Your Security Controls
Below are some of the ways BAS can help strengthen your cybersecurity measures and improve protection across your security environment.
1. Improve Your Threat Intelligence
BAS helps your security team extract and uncover the critical security data that informs your threat intelligence.
As such, BAS can help optimize your threat intelligence—from stand-alone feeds to auto-ingested intel.
It can strengthen your deployed security controls and help you take a more proactive approach in handling future cybersecurity threats.
Through BAS, you’ll have stronger threat intelligence that can keep your security leaders, stakeholders, and endpoint users informed about the latest cyber threats, including their possible repercussions.
It can foster a cybersecurity culture that helps ensure everyone across your company follow your security protocols and take every precaution to reduce security risks and potential vulnerabilities.
2. Uncover Security Strengths and Gaps
Deploying breach and attack simulations helps you comprehensively sweep of your company’s security environment and controls.
You can detect your security posture’s strong points and vulnerabilities to improve defenses and remediate issues.
BAS can also prompt you to revisit, refine, and reinforce your best security practices, such as:
- Segregation of duties. This principle focuses on dividing vital functions among team members to ensure no one individual holds all the access privileges or information that can potentially perpetrate fraud.
- Defense in depth. This cybersecurity strategy provides multiple security control layers to protect your IT systems and security environment.
Each layer is designed to mitigate or block threats to deter (or slow down) attackers from carrying out their attacks successfully.
BAS can give you accurate, comprehensive data to help you learn what and how to fix security gaps and mitigate potential risks while strengthening your existing security controls.
3. Implement a More Effective Change Management Process
One of the critical aspects of maintaining a strong security posture is implementing a solid change management program.
After all, constant changes, employee turn-overs, adoption of new technologies, onboarding of new staff, etc., can make it easy to miss and even lead to security weaknesses.
BAS can help you proactively detect the security vulnerabilities in your networks and systems due to these changes.
Through the simulated attacks, you can spot and mitigate the potential security risks accurately. It allows you to document misconfigured systems, rogue devices, and augmented controls when the change occurs or gets discovered.
This way, you don’t miss the chance to validate any security consequences, such as data breaches, and you can discover issues before they cause serious damage.
4. Test Newly Adopted Security Solutions
Many security solutions don’t have the necessary configurations you need out of the box, which can lead to security gaps and risks if not checked and set up properly.
Some solutions might also require re-configurations and manual updating. If you don’t update regularly and set up your security tools properly, you can leave your systems and networks vulnerable to attacks.
Running breach and attack simulations can help you test and verify your security solutions’ and controls’ effectiveness and spot unexpected gaps.
You can eliminate a lot of guesswork. You’ll get accurate data to pinpoint which deployed apps might contribute to exposing your security environment to cyber threats and attacks.
5. Expose Shadow IT
Devices and tools that are not part of your official technology stack or approved and deployed by your IT team are some of the common causes of security gaps in your systems.
BAS solutions can help you identify shadow IT apps and, in turn, reduce the potential security risks that come with using these tools.
BAS platforms can help you detect, stop, and eliminate shadow IT deployed in your systems.
You can mitigate security risks and prevent attacks that exploit the security vulnerabilities via shadow IT, allowing you to be more proactive and maintain a solid security posture.
Strengthen Your Security with BAS
No perfect security solution exists that can guarantee 100% protection from modern-day cyber threats and attacks.
However, deploying BAS can significantly reduce the risks and help strengthen your security controls.
Choose the best-fitting BAS platform for your company and security needs. Doing so allows you to uncover your security vulnerabilities and proactively protect against damaging cyber attacks.