Dark Reading is part of the Informa Tech Division of Informa PLC

This site is operated by a business or businesses owned by Informa PLC and all copyright resides with them.Informa PLC's registered office is 5 Howick Place, London SW1P 1WG. Registered in England and Wales. Number 8860726.

Threat Intelligence

3/20/2018
10:30 AM
Paul Kurtz
Paul Kurtz
Commentary
Connect Directly
LinkedIn
RSS
E-Mail vvv
100%
0%

The Case for Integrating Physical Security & Cybersecurity

Aggregating threat intel from external data sources is no longer enough. You must look inside and outside your traditional knowledge base for the best way to defend against attacks.

Early last year in "Grizzly Steppe and Carbanak: The Dangers of Miscalculation in Cyberspace," TruSTAR researchers outlined the overlap of tactics, techniques, and procedures (TTP) between Russian state organizations and criminal organizations like the Carbanak hacking group. We found that Carbanak and attacks attributed to Russian state security agencies were utilizing some the same infrastructure to launch attacks. CrowdStrike's new 2018 Threat Report expands the aperture beyond Russia to include to North Korea, China, and Iran. There's evidence hacktivists borrow these TTPs too.

The overlap of TTP raises serious questions for defenders of corporate and government networks, and poses a danger of miscalculation for government in responding to attacks. Overlapping TTP also drives home the need to change our security strategy at the organizational level to a unified security data model that can help organizations better defend themselves and collaborate with other companies, sharing organizations, and even government agencies.

Too often, security teams silo event data into multiple categories like fraud, phishing, malware, DDoS, insider threats, and physical breaches, just to name a few. These are often handled by separate teams requiring different skills sets, which is understandable. But it's also surprising that we separate the data around these events and fail to correlate it in a common repository to identify trends and patterns in TTP.

Take spear phishing, for example. We know spear phishing campaigns often insert malware strains that can lead to advanced persistent threats through command-and-control servers. DDoS obviously disrupts networks, but it is also used as a means to establish a persistent presence. Physical breaches lead to malware implants. Our failure to fuse this data leaves us vulnerable to adversaries, creating dangerous inefficiency for security operators. Without a comprehensive understanding of event data across an entire organization, we place ourselves at a permanent disadvantage.

Where Collaboration Is Already Happening
Several large companies in finance, cloud services, insurance, health, and retail are now integrating their event data associated with fraud, malware, DDoS, and phishing. (Physical breach data is a laggard.) For example, Rackspace Chief Security Officer (CSO) and TruSTAR adviser Brian Kelly recently broke down his decision to combine physical security and cybersecurity in The Wall Street Journal. Kelly argued that in the case of executive protection, the number of spear phishing and spoofing attacks against top executives clearly mark this area as both a physical and cyber problem.

Progressive security teams are also integrating relevant data associated with the protection of their own infrastructure as well as that of their customers. This data model does not rely on adoption of a particular data format or protocol such as STIX. Companies using this approach can leverage internal resources including security information and event management (SIEM) systems, case management, endpoint detection, and vulnerability data with relevant external data feeds including everything from threat intelligence to insights from information sharing analysis centers (ISACs) to government insights.

The key component to a unified security data model relies on a centralized common knowledge repository. A common knowledge repository of security-related events can align teams and make working together more effective. Security teams can then visualize relationships in real time and exchange notes to streamline responses and save time. This approach also creates a historical reference point, which can expedite a forensic investigation when a breach or disruption occurs.

This framework extends beyond individual organizations. Like-minded organizations can easily leverage insights from others using cloud-based technology. Machine learning can identify trending TTPs in real time, enabling others to proactively defend themselves by ingesting insights and modifying their SIEM and firewall profiles accordingly.

Adoption of a unified security data model is a step beyond a traditional threat intelligence platform. Aggregating data from external sources is no longer enough. You must look at your entire organizational knowledge to accurately to determine relevance, context, and priority.

Related Content:

Interop ITX 2018

Join Dark Reading LIVE for two cybersecurity summits at Interop ITX and learn from the industry’s most knowledgeable IT security experts. Check out the Interop ITX 2018 security track here. Save $200 off your conference pass with Promo Code DR200.

Paul Kurtz is Executive Chairman and Co-founder of TruSTAR Technology. Prior to TruSTAR, Paul was the CISO and chief strategy officer for CyberPoint International LLC where he built the US government and international business verticals. Prior to CyberPoint, Paul was the ... View Full Bio
 

Recommended Reading:

Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Comments
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
Joe Stanganelli
50%
50%
Joe Stanganelli,
User Rank: Ninja
3/22/2018 | 10:44:26 AM
Physical security and social engineering
It's crazy to me that this isn't basic stuff yet. Post-It notes on the screen, anyone?

Not to mention how often social engineering is successfully used as a vector for attack, including socially engineering oneself onto the premises. 
REISEN1955
50%
50%
REISEN1955,
User Rank: Ninja
3/21/2018 | 1:14:40 PM
True story
2 weeks ago my wife, daughter and her 3 year old daughter, came to visit my office which is very tightly controlled with badge cards and readers.  We ate lunch in the cafeteria and visited my colleagues.  All were delighted to meet little Cariana.   But at the end of their visit, little 3 year old Cariana takes all the cards and said "they have to be returned" and with them in hand, walked across the lobby to security and handed them in.  The woman in the office was enchanted!!!!   A 3 YEAR OLD understands the concept of perimeter security BETTER than most adults!
Commentary
How SolarWinds Busted Up Our Assumptions About Code Signing
Dr. Jethro Beekman, Technical Director,  3/3/2021
News
'ObliqueRAT' Now Hides Behind Images on Compromised Websites
Jai Vijayan, Contributing Writer,  3/2/2021
News
Attackers Turn Struggling Software Projects Into Trojan Horses
Robert Lemos, Contributing Writer,  2/26/2021
Register for Dark Reading Newsletters
White Papers
Video
Cartoon Contest
Write a Caption, Win an Amazon Gift Card! Click Here
Latest Comment: George has not accepted that the technology age has come to an end.
Current Issue
2021 Top Enterprise IT Trends
We've identified the key trends that are poised to impact the IT landscape in 2021. Find out why they're important and how they will affect you today!
Flash Poll
How Enterprises are Developing Secure Applications
How Enterprises are Developing Secure Applications
Recent breaches of third-party apps are driving many organizations to think harder about the security of their off-the-shelf software as they continue to move left in secure software development practices.
Twitter Feed
Dark Reading - Bug Report
Bug Report
Enterprise Vulnerabilities
From DHS/US-CERT's National Vulnerability Database
CVE-2020-28466
PUBLISHED: 2021-03-07
This affects all versions of package github.com/nats-io/nats-server/server. Untrusted accounts are able to crash the server using configs that represent a service export/import cycles. Disclaimer from the maintainers: Running a NATS service which is exposed to untrusted users presents a heightened r...
CVE-2021-27364
PUBLISHED: 2021-03-07
An issue was discovered in the Linux kernel through 5.11.3. drivers/scsi/scsi_transport_iscsi.c is adversely affected by the ability of an unprivileged user to craft Netlink messages.
CVE-2021-27365
PUBLISHED: 2021-03-07
An issue was discovered in the Linux kernel through 5.11.3. Certain iSCSI data structures do not have appropriate length constraints or checks, and can exceed the PAGE_SIZE value. An unprivileged user can send a Netlink message that is associated with iSCSI, and has a length up to the maximum length...
CVE-2021-27363
PUBLISHED: 2021-03-07
An issue was discovered in the Linux kernel through 5.11.3. A kernel pointer leak can be used to determine the address of the iscsi_transport structure. When an iSCSI transport is registered with the iSCSI subsystem, the transport's handle is available to unprivileged users via the sysfs file system...
CVE-2021-26294
PUBLISHED: 2021-03-07
An issue was discovered in AfterLogic Aurora through 7.7.9 and WebMail Pro through 7.7.9. They allow directory traversal to read files (such as a data/settings/settings.xml file containing admin panel credentials), as demonstrated by dav/server.php/files/personal/%2e%2e when using the caldav_public_...