When organizations implement digital solutions, they frequently increase network complexity and broaden their potential attack surface. The evolving cyber threat landscape, combined with a growing cybersecurity skills gap, emphasizes the importance of having security solutions capable of monitoring and mitigating threats across these increasingly complex business networks. Creating a continuous security monitoring strategy is one way to accomplish this.
Continuous security monitoring (CSM) tools automate threat detection and provide organizations with real-time security posture updates. CSM tools also make use of threat intelligence to keep organizations safe from both existing and emerging threats. This is critical in digital business environments because it allows organizations to innovate without jeopardizing security.
What is the significance of continuous security monitoring?
Organizations of all sizes rely on technology to carry out their day-to-day operations in today’s business environments. As a result, businesses now have more devices on their networks than ever before. Organizations with ineffective security programmers have little visibility into network operations, exposing them to higher levels of cyber risk.
The increase in remote work and reliance on third-party vendors has also introduced new security risks. Because it decentralizes network operations and creates network gaps, the large number of employees now working from home raises concerns about data security. The same is true for third-party vendors. While working with third-party vendors can help improve operational efficiency, failing to manage vendors properly can expose organizations to compliance and financial risk.
As network ecosystems become more complex, it is critical to have security solutions in place that monitor for threats on a continuous basis. Companies can use CSM systems to more effectively identify and respond to threats, reducing the impact of attacks. This not only helps organizations defend against threats but also allows them to monitor security and compliance requirements.
The advantages of continuous security monitoring within a large organisation
Enterprise organizations benefit from continuous security monitoring in a variety of ways. Internally, the visibility gained from CSM solutions provides insight into risk-reduction measures that can be implemented. CSMs also assist organizations in identifying misconfigured security controls that cybercriminals can use to gain network access. By connecting risk management processes with internal systems, helps to support ongoing application and device authorization.
Continuous security monitoring not only improves the accuracy and efficiency of security controls but also helps with vendor management. CSM platforms help organizations manage third-party risk proactively by providing visibility into vendor ecosystems. This translates to more effective vendor relationships because it allows organizations to actively resolve third-party security and compliance concerns as they arise.
Four factors to consider when developing a successful continuous monitoring strategy
Several factors must be considered in order for your continuous monitoring strategy to be effective. Four factors to consider when developing a successful continuous monitoring strategy are listed below:
1. Determine which threats should be prioritised.
Because continuous monitoring consumes a lot of resources, you must decide which threats to prioritise. Individual threats can be assigned risk levels to accomplish this. When assigning risk levels to threats, consider the likelihood and impact of a specific attack. A low-risk threat is one that has a low likelihood of occurring and has no significant impact on your business operations. In contrast, if a threat has a high probability of occurring and has a significant impact on your business operations, devote your resources to it.
As a general rule, systems that handle federally protected data are considered high risk and should be prioritised. This is due to the high value of the data stored on these systems, making them a frequent target of attacks.
2. Choosing Tools for Continuous Monitoring
There are several tools available to help with continuous monitoring. Using third-party tools is recommended because it reduces the workload on internal security teams. Whatever tool you choose, make sure it has security information and event management (SIEM) as well as governance, risk, and compliance (GRC) capabilities. These are critical components of enterprise security that should be supported by the tools you select.
You can use the following tools for continuous monitoring:
System configuration management tools: These tools track and monitor software changes to ensure that software configurations are working properly and do not create security gaps.
Network configuration management tools: These tools evaluate network configurations and networking policies to ensure that they meet compliance and security standards.
Authenticated vulnerability scan: An authenticated vulnerability scanning tool investigates the vulnerabilities in your operating system. These are useful for determining how well your CSM program is working.
3. Make a patching schedule.
Failure to patch your systems can expose your organization to cyber risk by leaving them vulnerable to attacks. You can ensure that your systems are always up to date and secure by creating a patch schedule.
To begin, make a list of all the hardware and software in your network ecosystem. After that, assign risk levels to each patch so you know which system updates to prioritize. Then, collaborate with your team to assign individual patch implementation roles. Finally, run patches on test systems before deploying them to ensure that they do not introduce additional security risks.
4. Educate employees on best practises for cybersecurity.
Employees who are cyber-aware are more likely to update their systems and applications on a regular basis, which improves your organization’s overall cybersecurity. Employees, depending on their level of expertise, can also assist in identifying potential vulnerabilities within systems. As a result, it is advised that you develop a program for employee cybersecurity education. Unfortunately, no continuous security monitoring program can be guaranteed to be 100% effective, but with a cyber-aware workforce, you can ensure that low-level threats are addressed properly.
What can VaporVM do for you in terms of continuous security monitoring
It can be difficult for organizations to build a continuous security monitoring program if they do not have complete visibility into their network environments. VAPORVM security ratings provide organizations with an outside-in view of their IT infrastructure, allowing security teams to identify and remediate vulnerabilities quickly. Businesses can easily monitor the cyberhealth of their internal and vendor network ecosystems using A-F scoring across 10 risk factor groups, allowing them to prioritize threats.
VaporVM also monitors regulatory compliance and detects potential gaps in current security mandates to ensure that organizations and their vendors are always in compliance with relevant regulations. VAPORVM provides the insights required to develop continuous security monitoring strategies that ensure ongoing security and success.