Technological innovation in the Information technology industry presents complex challenges for IT security professionals. The focus of yesteryear was on endpoint protection and server security. Today, the IT security focus areas encompass cloud security, ransomware attacks, and mobile security. Also, internet background radiation whereupon remote desktop protocol applications get exploited by attackers.
And the age of bringing your own device (BYOD) further complicates people and information systems security. This is because, with a weak BYOD policy, smartphones will only be protected while being used within the corporate network environment. And become vulnerable to attackers when outside the office because of the unsecured wireless network.
Today, the attackers keep perfecting ways of evading detection even as attacks are being executed. And the trend is fast moving towards the use of automated tools to execute evasive attacks.
By way of example, services and applications that can access the internet tend to be the main areas for system vulnerability. The same applications and services provide the main entry point to file servers, wireless networks, backup storage, and VoIP telephony system. A better understanding of the security environment will lead to better decisions made by the clients supported. Ultimately, the best approach would lead to adequate protection of the systems deployed and the people working the system.
The main IT Security focus areas
Remote Desktop Protocol
In as much as remote desktop protocol (RDP) has simplified IT support for many organizations, it presents a weak point in threat management. Lately, there are a number of tools that support remote and off-site support. Some of these apparently helpful applications have been abused to cause havoc. In most cases, hackers will use brute force when identifying weak RDP based hosted services.
With a successful login to the network, attackers will use Mimikatz to expose credentials for the superuser. Then, use the super credentials to propagate attacks across the entire network of computers. The end result such violation can be devastating. Thus, it is important for network security administrators to be careful exposing local RDP services and applications to the internet.
No doubt, the number of ransomware attack victims keeps increasing. This is because most ransomware attackers are good escaping detection. And having gained a successful entry into the computer, they use algorithms to encrypt entire storage drives. Therefore, the cyber-attack victim will have to part with some money in order to regain access to the encrypted files.
Why are ransomware attackers successful at their missions? Because they have a better understanding of how ordinary network security firewalls work. Also, they know the capability of a standard endpoint security software. In short, they have mastered the attack landscape. As it is, the solution lies in the implementation of a security solution that offers zero-day threat neutralization, even Sophos firewall suppliers in Kenya.
Today, we have smartphones with the processing capability matching that of computers. Furthermore, the amount of sensitive and important information held by these gadgets is amazing. In fact, most job-related transactions can be executed using a smartphone. Hence, attackers have developed mobile malware targeting smartphone owners.
The attacks targeted on smartphones usually come in the form of malicious software installations. In the past, android phone users were the main victims of malicious software. Be that as it may, over time Google has put in place measures curbing downloads of suspicious applications. Still, caution needs to be taken when downloading and installing applications.
More and more organizations continue migrating core services to the cloud. Hosting services in virtual servers tend to increase efficiency as well as flexibility. In short, the cloud service has provided companies with a platform for running operations efficiently and more profitably. However, the attackers have read the trend and are presently developing malicious codes targeted at cloud services.
Even though most advanced unified threat management solutions focus on server and endpoint security, still a lot needs to be done about cloud security. Therefore IT security practitioners have an obligation of ensuring that the security solution deployed offers protection for cloud servers.
Organizations need to recognize that the cybersecurity landscape has greatly shifted over the years. The IT security focus areas we have highlighted above will provide a roadmap for the deployment of cybersecurity tools. Getting the focus right will lead to adequate protection of company data, the devices being used and the people participating in the today to day business operations.