Why Security Vulnerability Assessments Are Necessary?

Manisha Patnaik | October 26, 2021 | 19 views

Security vulnerability assessment
Cybercrimes have increasingly become a matter of concern for companies worldwide. Over the past few years, the rise of big-ticket ransomware attacks and exposure of perilous software supply chain infections has awakened organizations to various digital dangers.

So, the big question is, how to combat the security threats that are on meteoric growth?

The best solution is to adopt a security vulnerability assessment.

What is Security Vulnerability Assessment?


A vulnerability assessment involves a systematic review of security hazards, which helps identify IT infrastructure’s weaknesses, risks, and vulnerabilities.

When it comes to mitigating vulnerabilities and resolving issues, the collective imperative is to analyze the problem areas before getting them fixed.

A security assessment is critically important to combat the complexities and with an effective vulnerability assessment program, organizations use the tools required to comprehend the probable security weaknesses and enable the protection of systems and data from intruders and unauthorized breaches.

For most organizations, ensuring the safety of devices, networks, applications, and digital assets are part of a broader vulnerability management strategy. It includes an extensive assessment, in-depth processes, and mitigation methods to explore the entire threat spectrum.

Typically, it is conducted regularly. Vulnerability assessment offers a firm assurance in the security of data, especially when some alterations have been implemented or a new service has been added, or, for that matter, and installation of new equipment has taken place.

Each assessment provides a perspective about the risk in its periphery and suggests solutions to control the risk factors and the evolving threats.

Why Security Vulnerability Assessment Is Necessary? 


The perpetual threat of cybercrime has necessitated the demand for vulnerability assessments significantly. They make organizations realize their security defects and contribute towards mitigating them.

Hackers are forever ready to make phishing attacks. As per reports, hackers are at work every 39 seconds. Thus, it is extremely important to be vigilant or complacent to activate hackers’ and cybercriminals’ machinations. Over the period, cybercrimes are fluctuating and thus need ongoing attention.

The ideal solution is to undertake consistent vulnerability assessments to safeguard confidential data, systems, and networks. Furthermore, it helps organizations understand the risk and enables smart decision-making.

To ensure security, companies ought to conduct both external and internal scans of their networks.

According to Gartner (paywall), “Large organizations with thousands of employees, tens of thousands of servers and many operating systems receive hundreds of requests per year to patch thousands of vulnerabilities that cannot be remediated in less than 15 days.”

One of the best reasons security vulnerability assessments are important is because it confirms an enterprise’s management processes and whether it has covered every critical patch through outlined existing remediation.

Why Do Companies Need Vulnerability Assessment?


A vulnerability assessment provides companies insightful details on all types of security discrepancies in their environment.

It paves ways to evaluate the risks associated with the flaws.

This helps organizations have a better knowledge of their security scare, overall weaknesses, and assets.

Moreover, the first thing that strikes us on hearing about a cyber-attack is the security of data. With the right and adequate implementation of security assessments, the safety and security of important data could be easily protected. A security assessment would be helpful to reduce irrelevant expenses and make space and increase the IT budget to invest in other key aspects.
Undoubtedly, data breach causes substantial loss to an organization, which leads to legal hassles and financial hazards. In fact, most of the time companies fail to recover the loss.

Thus, it doesn’t harm to place solid policies and methods to strengthen the entire security position of the organization and this can only be possible with a strategic security vulnerability assessment.

In a nutshell, this would keep the companies aware and, in all likelihood, keep the cyber-criminals at bay.

A CASE STUDY ANALYSIS


To cite an example, let’s take how Zensar conducted a three-pronged vulnerability assessment with port scan and penetration scanning. It determined the security of its offerings to meet customer requests for Brainshark, a leading provider of on-demand presentation solutions, helping customers deliver business interaction across 600+ ranking companies in the market.

While Brainshark knew their systems were secure and could also establish it through their documentation, they still undertook a third-party security vulnerability assessment.

Zensar’s vulnerability assessment procedures were based on the industry’s best practices that included tests for SQL injection, cookie manipulation, access control weakness, session state, and cross-site scripting.

The focus of the test was to identify the host and application security concerns. Upon completing the tests and assessments, Brainshark expressed satisfaction and was confident enough in their ability and solution. They knew their security posture was highly protected and secure.


Types of Vulnerability Assessments:


Vulnerability assessments unearth a variety of system and network vulnerabilities. This  indicates the reliability of the assessment process, which is implemented with different tools, scanners, and methods that helps discover the vulnerabilities, risks, and threats.

Network-based assessment scanning: It is used to determine the presumptive network security attacks. This kind of scanning can also detect the vulnerable systems on wired as well as wireless networks.

Host-based scans: It is easy to locate the vulnerabilities in servers or other network hosts with host-based scanning. This type of scanning provides visibility into the configuration settings and legacy systems.

Database scans: Database scans ascertain the weak points in a database to preclude malefic attacks.

Application Scans: It examines websites to identify and recognize software vulnerabilities and inaccurate configurations in network or web applications.

Summing Up


Organizations need to be watchful every minute and ensure the security posture is  rigorous, which is only possible with security vulnerability assessments. Based on this criterion, understanding company risks gets simplified in turn preventing intrusions and threats.

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS


What Are the Advantages of Security Vulnerability Assessment?

There are several advantages attached to security vulnerability assessments. To put it precisely, it can help identify the vulnerabilities before cybercriminals do and determine the level of risk.

Undoubtedly, opting for vulnerability assessment would save a lot of time and money and mitigate the risk and prevent the irrelevant expenditure that follows after the cyber-attacks.

What Are the Disadvantages of Security Vulnerability Assessment?

While vulnerability assessments are highly advisable, it has its share of drawbacks which cannot be ignored. One of the primary limitations of vulnerability assessment is that it does not hint at every vulnerability that exists. Moreover, it sometimes signals false positives too.

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Sourcefire, Inc. (Nasdaq:FIRE), a world leader in intelligent cybersecurity solutions, is transforming the way global mid- to large-size organizations and government agencies manage and minimize network security risks. With solutions from the network to the endpoint, Sourcefire provides customers with Agile Security that is as dynamic as the real world it protects and the attackers against which it defends. Trusted for more than 10 years, Sourcefire has been consistently recognized for its innovation and industry leadership with dozens of patents, world-class research, and award-winning technology.

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DISH's 5G Wireless Network is Available to Over 20% U.S. Population

DISH | June 16, 2022

As of June 14, DISH is providing 5G broadband service to more than 20% of the US population. As DISH continues to redefine the way the world communicates, this represents a significant milestone in the development of the world's most powerful cloud-native 5G Open RAN network. "This is a big moment for DISH as we connect customers across the country with America's first and only cloud-native Open RAN network. This milestone was achieved through the collaboration, ingenuity and hard work of the DISH team and our numerous partners, including AWS, Cisco, CommScope, Dell, Fujitsu, Intel, JMA, Mavenir, Nokia, Oracle, Palo Alto, Qualcomm, Samsung and VMware. We're the only major network in the world built primarily with American vendors." Dave Mayo, executive vice president of network development, DISH Wireless DISH's Smart 5G network was debuted in May through Project Genesis, providing DISH wireless service in Las Vegas. DISH has now extended its service to more than 120 locations throughout the nation. Anyone in an eligible area can access Project Genesis. Customers can learn about current coverage regions and sign up for Project Genesis for unlimited data, voice, and text by visiting Genesis5G.com. Project Genesis users can presently choose between the Samsung Galaxy S22 and the NetGear 5G hotspot. DISH already sells the Motorola Edge+ in Las Vegas and plans to extend its sales to other regions in the coming months. Moreover, new compatible gadgets will be released throughout the year. The Project Genesis phone and data services on the Samsung Galaxy S22 use the DISH Smart 5G network while also connecting to our partner network, a first in the United States. The Galaxy S22, which is supported by a network of networks, automatically transitions between networks, providing DISH users with phone and data services from numerous networks at any place and at any time. This solution employs eSIM and multi-SIM technologies. John Swieringa, president and chief operating officer, DISH Wireless said that, "This is an important step forward in our work to connect Americans to our Smart 5G™ network, but it's only the beginning. We continue to focus on building out more coverage and bringing innovative 5G services and solutions to our customers." DISH will extend VoNR capability to more markets as it enhances the VoNR experience after becoming the first service provider to offer voice over new radio (VoNR) in the United States through Edge+ in Las Vegas this past May. DISH's 5G broadband service is 3GPP Release 15 enhanced mobile broadband (eMBB) compatible and is delivered through DISH's 5G core. DISH's AWS-4, Lower 700 MHz E Block, and AWS H Block spectrum are used to provide 20% coverage. DISH will submit its FCC buildout report by July 14, 2022.

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NETWORK SECURITY

Edgecore Networks Rolls Out the World’s First Open and Interoperable Hospitality Solution Based on TIP OpenWiFi

Edgecore Networks | June 24, 2022

Edgecore Networks, a leading provider of traditional and open network solutions for enterprises, data centers, and telecommunication service providers, today announces the launch of the world's first full-stack OpenWiFi hospitality solution for ISP and MSP customers, leading the way forward ushering in collaboratively created OpenWiFi business model for hotels. Edgecore’s Open and Interoperable Hospitality Solution is led by ecCLOUD™, one of the first TIP OpenWiFi 2.0 based enterprise controller that can manage hundreds of thousands of Wi-Fi Access points (APs) from both Edgecore as well as any other hardware vendor with compatible OpenWiFi software. In addition, Edgecore’s EAP104, the world's first open hospitality and multi-dwelling units (MDU) dedicated Wi-Fi AP, not only works with Edgecore’s ecCLOUD but also with any TIP OpenWiFi compatible controller. The agility to provide network management and application services in a rapidly changing and demanding environment is crucial for success in the hospitality and MDU markets. However, existing proprietary network infrastructures hinder the development of innovative application services and hold back effective cost control. In view of this, Edgecore has actively led the way adopting the Telecom Infra Project’s (TIP) OpenWiFi to unlock limitations and create an OpenWiFi compatible infrastructure with commercial expansion value, rewriting the nature of hospitality Wi-Fi networks. ISPs and MSPs are now no longer bound by a single vendor but can flexibly choose mixing and matching from different cloud controllers, Wi-Fi APs, and switches. And, by using an open API to rapidly develop application services, whether they are self-developed or in cooperation with third-party partners, the time for launching new services and new applications is greatly shortened. All of this significantly reduces capital expenditure and operating costs and reduce TCO by up to 50%. Chris Busch, TIP Open Converged Wireless Co-Chair said: “TIP has been dedicated to reinforcing the global OpenWiFi ecosystem by working closely with Wi-Fi industry leaders. Edgecore’s expertise in cloud controllers has made the OpenWiFi 2.x stack accessible and practical, and unleashed countless innovation possibilities for ISPs and MSPs. We believe this is a highly scalable and efficient solution for hospitality providers worldwide” Edgecore’s ecCLOUD and Wi-Fi AP both use the latest version of TIP OpenWiFi 2.0, released for commercial use. TIP OpenWiFi 2.0 utilizes uCentral, a lightweight agile communications framework that can dramatically cut cloud hosting costs. In addition, TIP OpenWiFi’s open architecture enables Edgecore to work with application service providers to develop services including Smart Indoor Location Solution, network quality of experience (QoE), network security and other services. The Smart Indoor Location Solution is now available for trial use, and the world's first hospitality- and MDU-dedicated TIP OpenWiFi AP, EAP104, will be available for test appointments from now on, being officially launched in Q3 2022. To accelerate development of TIP OpenWiFi based innovative ecosystem applications, Edgecore also provides a TIP OpenWiFi Facilitating Program, for free. As part of the program users can perform remote TIP OpenWiFi testing through ecCLOUD without the need of downloading the CloudSDK, accelerating the creation of their own TIP OpenWiFi based solutions. “Edgecore’s full-stack OpenWiFi hospitality solution unbinds ISPs and MSPs from closed network infrastructures and introduces unlimited innovation possibilities and business potential. As one of the earliest and active TIP OpenWiFi partners, Edgecore Networks will keep working with TIP to grow the OpenWiFi ecosystem together globally.” Tengtai Hsu, Vice President of Edgecore Networks About Edgecore Networks Edgecore Networks Corporation is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Accton Technology Corporation, the leading networking ODM. Edgecore Networks delivers wired and wireless networking products and solutions through channel partners and system integrators worldwide for data center, service provider, enterprise, and SMB customers. Edgecore Networks is the leader in open networking, providing a full line of open 1G-400G Ethernet OCP Accepted™ switches, core routers, cell site gateways, virtual PON OLTs, optical packet transponders, and Wi-Fi access points that offer choice of commercial and open source NOS and SDN software. About the Telecom Infra Project The Telecom Infra Project (TIP) is a global community of companies and organizations that are driving infrastructure solutions to advance global connectivity. Half of the world’s population is still not connected to the internet, and for those who are, connectivity is often insufficient. This limits access to the multitude of consumer and commercial benefits provided by the internet, thereby impacting GDP growth globally. However, a lack of flexibility in the current solutions - exacerbated by a limited choice in technology providers - makes it challenging for operators to efficiently build and upgrade networks. Founded in 2016, TIP is a community of diverse members that includes hundreds of companies - from service providers and technology partners, to systems integrators and other connectivity stakeholders. We are working together to develop, test and deploy open, disaggregated, and standards-based solutions that deliver the high quality connectivity that the world needs - now and in the decades to come.

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ENTERPRISE MOBILITY

NEXCOM Accelerates Data Throughput with NVIDIA SmartNIC Silicon Enabled

NEXCOM | July 07, 2022

In response to rising demand for increased bandwidth of network traffic, NEXCOM, a leading supplier of network appliances, has released a compact single-port 200GbE network interface card (NIC). NL 110FM-OS leverages the award-winning NVIDIA® ConnectX®-6 Dx SmartNIC silicon and a PCIe Gen4 interface that doubles the speed of data transfer, compared with the previous generation PCIe standard. The network connection is enabled through one QSFP56 port to utilize double-bit PAM4 data transmission, and the NIC card is compatible with NEXCOM's latest rackmount network appliances. The sheer volume of data traveling over the IT network leaves service providers no other choice but to adjust to the new reality. One of the ways to solve the problem is to increase the number of servers and another is to migrate to more compact solutions based on the latest technologies. The first method will require purchasing additional servers, leading to maintenance personnel expansion and energy consumption growth, whereas the second method is simply to increase the bandwidth of existing network nodes. This latter option provides a greener solution and should be preferable for all CSPs whether or not they have environmental concerns in reducing their carbon footprint. NEXCOM's 200GbE NIC card increases the overall speed of a node on the network. NL 110FM-OS features one QSFP56 port to enable double-bit data transmission via a new signal modulation format called PAM4. This allows 200 gigabits per second of data traffic in each direction using a single 4-lane copper or fiber cable. The NVIDIA ConnectX-6 Dx SmartNIC provides more value-added features, including advanced networking and security to accelerate mission-critical applications. Thus, NL 110FM-OS is perfectly fit for security, virtualization, SDN, NFV, big data, machine learning, storage, and network performance testing and emulation. "By adopting the latest 200GbE NIC card powered by ConnectX-6, our customers can significantly increase the throughput of their servers and pivot to massive data processing without much effort, We have a long history of working with NVIDIA on the adaptation of previous generation LAN controllers and are looking forward to our next successful joint projects." Matthew Liu, CTO of Network & Communication Solutions at NEXCOM "Data centers are being transformed by the growing demands of next-generation architectures required for massive hyperscale clouds and AI workloads," said Eunice Chiu, VP, Sales and GM Taiwan at NVIDIA. "NVIDIA's networking platform equips innovators such as NEXCOM to supercharge networking performance for the next wave of breakthrough data center applications." About NEXCOM Founded in 1992 and headquartered in Taipei, Taiwan, NEXCOM integrates its diverse capabilities and operates six global businesses, including the Network and Communication Solutions (NCS) unit. NCS focuses on the latest network technology and helps to build reliable network infrastructure, by delivering professional design and manufacturing services for customers all over the world. NCS's network application platform is widely adopted in Cyber Security Appliance, Load Balancer, uCPE, SD-WAN, Edge Computing, Storage, NVR, and other network applications for businesses of all sizes.

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