Cybersecurity Strategy


CyberAssure provides expert cybersecurity services to public and private sector organizations of every size to assure effective information security governance, risk management, and regulatory compliance. CyberAssure provides the cyber risk management link between organizational management and information technology. CyberAssure balances the potential of innovations with business priorities. Our services include qualitative and quantitative risk analysis, vulnerability assessments, strategic planning, penetration testing and threat simulation, cybersecurity operations development, organizational management consulting, staff augmentation, training, and much more.

Balancing value of innovative technology with the need for security within the limitations of financial resources has always been the struggle. The availability of information is the very reason information systems exist and yet the confidentiality and integrity of the “available” information must be maintained within a budget that makes fiscal sense. CyberAssure is the right advisory service to provide a strategic, comprehensive way to protect mission critical processes and assets and to check the hand of those entrusted to implement innovative information technology. Everyday information risks are multiplying and the losses that may be incurred because of failing to fully implement a comprehensive cybersecurity are difficult to quantify, but include loss of intellectual property, litigation costs, loss of reputation, loss of consumer confidence, and more. The greatest risk lies in the knowledge gap between executives who own the responsilbility to manage cyber risk and technology experts who expose the organization to new risks with the implementations of new technology. There has never been a greater need to understand the impact that security threats can have on a company’s bottom line. CyberAssure will give you the needed situational awareness to manage risk and manage your business.

There are various strategies and techniques used to design security systems. However, there are few, if any, effective strategies to enhance security after design. One technique enforces the principle of least privilege to great extent, where an entity has only the privileges that are needed for its function. That way even if an attacker gains access to one part of the system, fine-grained security ensures that it is just as difficult for them to access the rest.
Furthermore, by breaking the system up into smaller components, the complexity of individual components is reduced, opening up the possibility of using techniques such as automated theorem proving to prove the correctness of crucial software subsystems. This enables a closed form solution to security that works well when only a single well-characterized property can be isolated as critical, and that property is also assessable to math. Not surprisingly, it is impractical for generalized correctness, which probably cannot even be defined, much less proven. Where formal correctness proofs are not possible, rigorous use of code review and unit testing represent a best-effort approach to make modules secure.

The design should use “defense in depth”, where more than one subsystem needs to be violated to compromise the integrity of the system and the information it holds. Defense in depth works when the breaching of one security measure does not provide a platform to facilitate subverting another. Also, the cascading principle acknowledges that several low hurdles does not make a high hurdle. So cascading several weak mechanisms does not provide the safety of a single stronger mechanism.

Subsystems should default to secure settings, and wherever possible should be designed to “fail secure” rather than “fail insecure” (see fail-safe for the equivalent in safety engineering). Ideally, a secure system should require a deliberate, conscious, knowledgeable and free decision on the part of legitimate authorities in order to make it insecure.

In addition, security should not be an all or nothing issue. The designers and operators of systems should assume that security breaches are inevitable. Full audit trails should be kept of system activity, so that when a security breach occurs, the mechanism and extent of the breach can be determined. Storing audit trails remotely, where they can only be appended to, can keep intruders from covering their tracks. Finally, full disclosure helps to ensure that when bugs are found the “window of vulnerability” is kept as short as possible.

For more information, visit our cybersecurity division CyberAssure.

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