Strategies To Prevent 85% Of Cyber Attacks

DHS (US Department of Homeland Security) encourages network administrators to implement the recommendations below, which can prevent as many as 85 percent of targeted cyber attacks. 

These strategies are common sense to many, but DHS continues to see intrusions because organisations fail to use these basic measures.

1. Patch applications and operating systems – Vulnerable applications and operating systems are the targets of most attacks. 
Ensuring these are patched with the latest updates greatly reduces the number of exploitable entry points available to an attacker. Use best practices when updating software and patches by only downloading updates from authenticated vendor sites.

2. Application Whitelisting – is one of the best security strategies because it allows only specified programs to run while blocking all others, including malicious software.

3. Restrict administrative privileges – Threat actors are increasingly focused on gaining control of legitimate credentials, especially those associated with highly privileged accounts. Reduce privileges to only those needed for a user’s duties. Separate administrators into privilege tiers with limited access to other tiers.

4. Network Segmentation and Segregation into Security Zones – Segment networks into logical enclaves and restrict host-to-host communications paths. This helps protect sensitive information and critical services and limits damage from network perimeter breaches.

5. Input validation – Input validation is a method of sanitizing untrusted user input provided by users of a web application, and may prevent many types of web application security flaws, such as SQLi, XSS, and command injection.

6. File Reputation – Tune Anti-Virus file reputation systems to the most aggressive setting possible; some products can limit execution to only the highest reputation files, stopping a wide range of untrustworthy code from gaining control.

7. Understanding firewalls – When anyone or anything can access your network at any time, your network is more susceptible to being attacked. Firewalls can be configured to block data from certain locations (IP whitelisting) or applications while allowing relevant and necessary data through. 

Responding to Unauthorised Access to Networks: Implement your security incident response and business continuity plan. It may take time for your organisation’s IT professionals to isolate and remove threats to your systems and restore normal operations. 

Meanwhile, you should take steps to maintain your organisation’s essential functions according to your business continuity plan. Organisations should maintain and regularly test backup plans, disaster recovery plans, and business continuity procedures.

Naren NagpalLinkedIn Pulse

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