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Vulnerability Management: Why Taking a Risk-Based Approach is Important

Technology and the threat landscape are constantly evolving, leaving organisations exposed to new risks. Managing security gaps within your IT estate can be a complex and time-consuming task. Traditional vulnerability scanning tools can generate a massive amount of data, leaving security teams overwhelmed and struggling to prioritise remediation efforts. This not only burdens already busy security professionals but can also leave the organisation exposed to critical threats.

By taking a risk-based approach to vulnerability management, it allows you to focus on the most critical threats, allowing security teams to maximise their impact with limited resources.

 

What is Risk-Based Scanning?

Vulnerability management is the systematic identification, prioritisation, and remediation of security weaknesses across your whole IT estate, including your network, cloud infrastructure and devices. Vulnerabilities included within this remit are software and hardware updates, misconfigurations of systems and end of life assets.

The most well-known method of prioritising and managing these risks is through the Common Vulnerability Scoring System (CVSS), with the most common iteration being CVSS v3. Whilst this scoring system is a fantastic methodology, there are some downfalls which can be overcome by taking a further risk-based approach based on current threat intelligence data. By also accounting for this type of data, you can overcome the drawbacks with CVSS which include how it can take a long time for a vulnerability to be registered and given a score, plus how that data can often be point-in-time based.

A risk-based approach that uses multiple methodologies allows you to have a better understanding of the threat landscape, giving you the severity level and the risk associated with that vulnerability based on how it is being exploited by threat actors. For example, if a vulnerability was given a medium severity score by CVSS v3 but there was an increase in the level of exploitation on the dark web, the security risk would be heightened and the vulnerability should move up the priority list to remediate. So, when looking for a vulnerability management tool or service, it is vital to consider what methodologies it uses for prioritisation.

 

Benefits of a Risk-Based Approach to Vulnerability Management

Optimised Resource Allocation: In today’s resource-constrained environment, organisations must make the most of limited time, budget, and manpower. Risk-based scanning enables security teams to focus their efforts and resources on addressing the vulnerabilities that pose the greatest threat to the organisation, thus reducing alert fatigue and giving a clear plan of action.

Reduced Remediation Time: By taking into account vulnerabilities’ risk profile, risk-based scanning streamlines the remediation process, allowing organisations to address critical issues promptly. This proactive approach helps minimise the window of exposure for attackers and reduces the likelihood of successful exploitation of weaknesses being used actively in the wild.

Enhanced Decision-Making: Risk-based scanning provides security teams and organisational stakeholders with actionable intelligence that informs decision-making processes. By understanding the potential impact of vulnerabilities affecting the business, decision-makers can make informed choices about risk acceptance, mitigation strategies, and resource allocation.

 

vSOC Recon – Vulnerability Management Service

At Data Connect our team of cyber security experts offers a comprehensive vulnerability management service. Taking a risk-based scanning approach to identify vulnerabilities and prioritising them, along with continuous monitoring and complete coverage of your network, cloud infrastructure and devices.

The vSOC Recon service offered by our expert SOC team is one of our managed services and is delivered through our dynamic and innovative vSOC Connect Console. Providing an all-in-one solution for managing your vulnerabilities, and full transparency and control of your business’ cyber security defences. As part of our service you can:

  • See the top 10 vulnerabilities affecting your whole organisation
  • Find out which assets are more at risk
  • Identify the evolving risks in your system quickly
  • Create reports about individual vulnerabilities
  • View and track specific groups of devices and their vulnerabilities with custom dashboards
  • Uncover the vulnerabilities that may put your organisation at risk of failing the Cyber Essentials certification

 

For more information about vSOC Recon, our vulnerability management service and for a demo of our all-in-one cyber security console, get in touch with our expert team today.

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