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Is your organisation ready to defend insider threat?
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henryhon
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henryhon,
User Rank: Apprentice
8/31/2020 | 7:58:02 AM
Is your organisation ready to defend insider threat?
Insider threat absolutely is not a new topic, many technical / non-technical people talk about it every day, sometimes people will link it up directly with solutions of user security awareness training and Data Loss Prevention (DLP) implementation. That is not incorrect, but is that all?

Recently, in early August 2020, Tesla occurred an insider threat in one of their Gigafactory, a Russian man allegedly offered to pay $1 million to one of the Tesla's employee to deploy malware into the company network to ransom Telsa's data for millions of dollars. This incident has a happy ending that the Tesla employee notified Tesla instead of accepting the bribe or doing nothing.

Let's us try to simulate the scenario that if the ransomware was successfully installed to one of the file server by a privileged system administrator? Would it become a sad ending eventually? The answer is "It depends."

What if there is anti-malware solution deployed on every applicable hosts, the insider may need to disable the anti-malware solution by using privileged access on a particular host to execute the malware in the first place, which triggered an high alert alarm in Security information and event management (SIEM) system. Is there any separate team or Security Operations Centre to monitor the SIEM alerts and investigate what is happening for the disable of the host level security control?

What if the malware is very sophisticated and could not be detected by host based anti-malware solution and attempt to inject malicious macros into every MS documents and excel spreadsheets stored on the file server. Is there any SIEM logic / event correlation could identify such abnormal file access behaviour?

What if the malware attempt to perform https beaconing to a "legitimate" external destination, e.g. AWS ec2 instance or MS Azure virtual machine. Is there any mechanism to flag out such network connectivity pattern?

What if the malware simply perform data exfiltration during network traffic peak hours to hide its track. Is there any mechanism to detect that?

If your organisation could confidently answer the above questions with proven breach attack simulation results, it could imply your organisation is having a good security control to a certain extend.

There is no one-size-fits-all security solution, implement many expensive security tools does not mean it will become more secure. It is always good to have regular red teaming / purple teaming exercises / breach attack simulation (BAS) to test your cybersecurity readiness of your of your current organisation in detect and respond. Be vigilant!


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