Increasing number of cybersecurity attacks and new regulations makes IIoT/IoT vulnerability management concept especially important to various organizations nowadays. Though IIoT/IoT vulnerability management is not a new concept, it has been already admitted that old practices such as periodic vulnerability scans and remediation management plans are weak defense practices. These days continuous and pro-active approaches are needed in order to mitigate security risk exposure and make remediation faster. In this What&Why article, we are going to explain a modern concept of IIoT/IoT vulnerability management and how important it is to implement it in your business.
What is IIoT/IoT Vulnerability Management?
IIoT/IoT vulnerability management is a cyclical process designed to continuously identify, classify, prioritize, remediate and mitigate security vulnerabilities in systems. IIoT/IoT vulnerability management is a comprehensive process that goes beyond standard scanning and patching – it involves a complete view in order to prioritize vulnerabilities.
In general, vulnerability management as a process includes 4 stages:
The first stage in any vulnerability management program is to identify all the flaws that exist across your IT systems. On the way to this, you need to determine the IT assets and find suitable vulnerability scanners for every asset. These days company’s IT systems are very complex and interconnected and this means that several vulnerability scanners are needed in order to provide a comprehensive defense. The more frequent is the vulnerability scanning performed at this stage, the more effective is the remediation and the lesser is the probability of a security breach to happen. The first stage is the most important one in the whole process and deserves lots of attention in order to provide an efficient IIoT/IoT vulnerability management.
Once vulnerabilities are identified across company’s IT systems, the next step is to estimate the risks they possess and to find an approach to handle them. Except understanding standard risks rating (such as Common Vulnerability Scoring System (CVSS) scores) of identified security vulnerabilities, at the stage of evaluation it is also essential to answer the following questions:
- Is an identified vulnerability easy-to-exploit, if exploitable at all (the problem of false alerts or false positives)?
- Does the vulnerability affect the security of the product directly?
- What are probable consequences for a business in case identified vulnerabilities are exploited?
- What are the vulnerabilities that pose the biggest risk to the company’s welfare?
The next step after identification and evaluation is to prioritize vulnerabilities – both in terms of which ones to fix faster as well as in terms of which team/engineer to focus on each vulnerability (e.g., it could be counterproductive to assign a cryptography expert to fix a network stack vulnerability and vice-versa). There are several ways how to manage identified security vulnerabilities:
- Remediation: Eliminating any probability of vulnerabilities to be exploited by patching, correcting, or replacing code.
- Mitigation: The temporal technique on the way to remediation to decrease the probability or effect of a vulnerability.
- No action: Accepting the vulnerability as it is. The most common reason behind this is usually that vulnerability remediation costs are higher than costs of vulnerabilities to be exploited. – both
As soon as remediation process is completed, another scan can be performed in order to ensure that the vulnerability is completely eliminated.
On the way to the efficiency, speed and cost-effectiveness of IIoT/IoT vulnerability management program, it is a good idea to make vulnerability assessments regular practice. Reporting lets the company know the security posture of its every asset and observe the dynamics such as decreased vulnerability detection or increased remediation speed. Regular reporting will help a company with its risk management and security regulatory requirements.
The Need for IIoT/IoT Vulnerability Management in Organizations
There is no company that is absolutely free from risk. If there is a chance, hackers will attack company of any size. Neither industry nor nature of your business will make your company immune to cyberattacks – data is everywhere and “data is the new gold”. Every business needs a vulnerability management tool.
One of the brightest examples of organizations that need IIoT/IoT vulnerability management tools is Internet of Things device manufacturers (as well as enterprises owning/operating IIoT/IoT devices in their IT/OT networks). Usually device vendors heavily invest in the development of new solution which results in “under-investment” in security of the products. Moreover, majority of IIoT/IoT devices use new (or less-common) protocols, platforms and middleware solutions that have not been thoroughly checked for security vulnerabilities. Therefore, many such devices can still be relatively easy hacked.
How can Binaré Help Organizations to Implement IIoT/IoT Vulnerability Management?
Binaré offers your business IIoT/IoT vulnerability management tool and here are comparative advantages of our automated platform:
- Analyzing your firmware’s software components and configuration for vulnerabilities: We provide actionable information for remediation that is considered as a best practice among existing vulnerability management solutions.
- Continuous monitoring of the software components in your firmware: When new vulnerabilities or threats emerge, we notify you immediately (via alert or pipeline integration), so you can act right away.
- We provide business metric-focused dashboards, detailed technical and engineering reports and regularly updated data feeds via our REST API for your continuous integrated development and security automation systems.
Except that, Binare also provides add-on professional services:
- Integration Services: Integrate binare’s IoT Firmware Analysis and Monitoring platform with your custom DevOps or SecOps solution.
- On-site/on-premise hosting: For customers with specific security needs, on-site installation and management of binare’s solution.
- Custom file types and toolchains: For customers with unique file types and/or toolchains, binare’s IoT Firmware Analysis and Monitoring platform can be extended to meet those needs.
- Advisory services: Leverage the IoT security expertise of binare to secure your device, firmware or environment.
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