“Assume you are compromised,” say top security officers

RSA released a new report that takes an in-depth look at the seismic shift in the cyber threat landscape, as enterprises are increasingly targeted for corporate espionage and sabotage.

The report, the latest in a series from the Security for Business Innovation Council (SBIC), asserts that for most organizations, it’s a matter of when, not if, they will be targeted by advanced threats.

APTs – a menace once confined to the defense industrial base and government agencies – are now targeting a broad range of private sector organizations to nab valuable intellectual property, trade secrets, corporate plans, access to operations and other proprietary data.

Rather than gain entry through the network perimeter, today’s ambitious attackers prefer to target human vulnerabilities, exploiting end users through social engineering techniques and spear phishing.

In an environment where the focus shifts from the impossible task of preventing intrusion to the crucial task of preventing damage, the report includes instructive guidance from 16 global security leaders for confronting this new class of threat:

  • Up-level intelligence gathering and analysis – Make intelligence the cornerstone of your strategy.
  • Activate smart monitoring – Know what to look for and set up your security and network monitoring to look for it.
  • Reclaim access control – Rein-in privileged user access.
  • Get serious about effective user training – Train your user population to recognize social engineering and compel them to take individual responsibility for organizational security.
  • Manage expectations of executive leadership – Ensure the C-level realizes the nature of combating APTs is fighting a digital arms race.
  • Rearchitect IT – Move from flat to segregated networks so it’s harder for attackers to roam the network and find the crown jewels.
  • Participate in intelligence exchange – Leverage knowledge from other organizations by sharing threat intelligence.

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