Perimeter
5/25/2012
10:18 AM
Connect Directly
Google+
Twitter
RSS
E-Mail
50%
50%

Fatalism, Realism -- Or The New Normal

The 'new' reality that you can't stop a determined attacker and you've likely already been hacked has become an accepted mantra

There's no way to pinpoint the exact moment security reached the tipping point of accepting that you've already been breached whether you know it or not, but it has been coming for a long time. Talk to most security experts, and they'll say this mindset is nothing new. But it wasn't until recently that it became acceptable to publicly acknowledge it.

Call it security's new reality, its new reality check, the acceptance phase of the inevitable state of hacking, or pure fatalism, but saying out loud that we can no longer keep the bad guys out of our networks, and they are already inside, has become the new normal. Many traditional security vendors, after years of marketing products that promised to stop the bad guys from infiltrating, are now acknowledging that the bad guys are more determined now and ultimately more successful at getting inside.

Read the other articles in this series on security's new reality:

>> Part 1: Security's New Reality: Assume The Worst
>> Part 2: Damage Mitigation As The New Defense
>> Part 3: Advanced Attacks Call For New Defenses

It was painfully obvious at the RSA Conference this year that the industry was accepting that the bad guys were winning big-time. A couple of start-ups there were all about gathering intelligence from the attackers who were already inside: CounterTack showed off a newly commercialized appliance that sits inside the network and observes the attacker's moves, gathers intelligence, and uses that to contain the damage. And CrowdStrike (which is still holding details of its business close to the vest) says it's focused on the attackers behind targeted attacks. George Kurtz, co-founder, president, and CEO of the company, says the goal is to make it more costly for the human being sitting behind the exfiltration stage of a hack.

Defensive posture is still relevant, of course, but defense alone is no longer the answer. The focus now is on minimizing the damage. This new normal requires organizations to beef up their detection and intelligence-gathering, but of course not all will have the resources and budget to do that.

Experts say it's time for a new generation of defenses built to detect, study, and apply that intelligence to existing defenses in order to contain the damage. We're already seeing vendor announcements featuring threat intelligence over the past few months, and a growing awareness of it, so the tide is turning.

The new focus isn't to stop the bad guys from getting in, but to stop them from actually stealing or damaging your data. Fatalism, realism, or the new normal -- it's where the security conversation has progressed, and there's no turning back.

Kelly Jackson Higgins is senior editor at Dark Reading

Kelly Jackson Higgins is Executive Editor at DarkReading.com. She is an award-winning veteran technology and business journalist with more than two decades of experience in reporting and editing for various publications, including Network Computing, Secure Enterprise ... View Full Bio

Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Register for Dark Reading Newsletters
White Papers
Cartoon
Current Issue
Flash Poll
Title Partner’s Role in Perimeter Security
Title Partner’s Role in Perimeter Security
Considering how prevalent third-party attacks are, we need to ask hard questions about how partners and suppliers are safeguarding systems and data.
Video
Slideshows
Twitter Feed
Dark Reading - Bug Report
Bug Report
Enterprise Vulnerabilities
From DHS/US-CERT's National Vulnerability Database
CVE-2014-6090
Published: 2015-04-27
Multiple cross-site request forgery (CSRF) vulnerabilities in the (1) DataMappingEditorCommands, (2) DatastoreEditorCommands, and (3) IEGEditorCommands servlets in IBM Curam Social Program Management (SPM) 5.2 SP6 before EP6, 6.0 SP2 before EP26, 6.0.3 before 6.0.3.0 iFix8, 6.0.4 before 6.0.4.5 iFix...

CVE-2014-6092
Published: 2015-04-27
IBM Curam Social Program Management (SPM) 5.2 before SP6 EP6, 6.0 SP2 before EP26, 6.0.4 before 6.0.4.6, and 6.0.5 before 6.0.5.6 requires failed-login handling for web-service accounts to have the same lockout policy as for standard user accounts, which makes it easier for remote attackers to cause...

CVE-2015-0113
Published: 2015-04-27
The Jazz help system in IBM Rational Collaborative Lifecycle Management 4.0 through 5.0.2, Rational Quality Manager 4.0 through 4.0.7 and 5.0 through 5.0.2, Rational Team Concert 4.0 through 4.0.7 and 5.0 through 5.0.2, Rational Requirements Composer 4.0 through 4.0.7, Rational DOORS Next Generation...

CVE-2015-0174
Published: 2015-04-27
The SNMP implementation in IBM WebSphere Application Server (WAS) 8.5 before 8.5.5.5 does not properly handle configuration data, which allows remote authenticated users to obtain sensitive information via unspecified vectors.

CVE-2015-0175
Published: 2015-04-27
IBM WebSphere Application Server (WAS) 8.5 Liberty Profile before 8.5.5.5 does not properly implement authData elements, which allows remote authenticated users to gain privileges via unspecified vectors.

Dark Reading Radio
Archived Dark Reading Radio
Join security and risk expert John Pironti and Dark Reading Editor-in-Chief Tim Wilson for a live online discussion of the sea-changing shift in security strategy and the many ways it is affecting IT and business.