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Why is Vulnerability Assessment so important?

A vulnerability assessment is a risk management process used to identify, quantify and rank possible vulnerabilities to threats in a given system.

2017: the Year of Cyberattacks?

2017 was a busy year for cyberattacks. Hackers were very productive, especially in the last quarter of 2017 with 82% more security vulnerabilities exploited compared to estimates. Each company was exposed to an average of 274 vulnerabilities.

Another significant example is that UK local governments have experienced an average of 19.5 million cyberattacks in 2017 according to a Big Brother Watch study.

In addition to human errors and IT security education that need to be strengthened in companies, cyberattacks due to information system security breaches are increasing faster. And if 2017 has been a good year for hackers, 2018 looks worse for companies. Whether it is on an operating system, a processor, a server, an application, … all companies are exposed to the exploitation of their vulnerabilities. None can claim to be 100% protected. This phenomenon affects SMEs even more. Indeed, they are the target of 77% of cyber-attacks. To face new threats, companies must equip themselves according to their infrastructures (traditional, virtualized, Cloud, hybrid) and their needs.


Vulnerability assessment: mandatory?

Vulnerabilities, these system weaknesses that can be exploited by hackers, can disrupt systems and business as well as expose sensitive or personal information. Anomalies often related to programming errors or configuration issues, 50 new vulnerabilities were detected every day on average in 2017 (28 vulnerabilities were discovered per day in 2016).

All known vulnerabilities are referenced by Common Vulnerabilities and Exposures. Because the list is accessible for all, hackers also have access to it. As a result, they can use malware purchased on the Darknet, launch DDoS or SQL injections attacks on vulnerable infrastructure or applications.

Disruption resulting from exploiting vulnerabilities can be corrected as they are discovered, but users remain exposed until the patch is installed. That is why it is essential to keep your software up-to-date but also to implement a cybersecurity policy focused on these attack risks.

A Vulnerability Management program can help in these situations. They discover the assets in your estate, detect vulnerabilities potentially exploitable by hackers, notify security teams, detail solutions to implement or automatically fix vulnerabilities.  The result is a reduced attack surface and a process for maintaining the smallest possible size. Vulnerability scanners give visibility to security teams to quickly act, prioritized for the most severe threats. As vulnerabilities become more numerous and dangerous, as hackers attack more businesses and as new technology solutions (such as mobile applications and the cloud) become more widely used, a security solution integrating a vulnerability scanner has become essential.


The Outpost24 Vulnerability Assessment solutions

At Outpost24, we have built "vulnerability management" solutions for more than fifteen years to respond to the market and the breach management problem. This issue is still topical, for instance, according to Gartner's predictions, 60% of companies in the digital sector will experience significant service failures by 2020 due to the IT security teams inability to manage risks.

It is therefore imperative to fix flaws quickly and proactively. By the time a cyber attack occurs, it is already too late. By acting upstream and keeping control of vulnerabilities through appropriate solutions, businesses can reduce the chance of disruption and damage to their reputation.

  • HIAB™ (hacker-in-a-box) manages internal security. It integrates a vulnerability scanner to identify network vulnerabilities, servers, and other devices. This Virtual Appliance is downloadable and has the main advantage of data sovereignty – keeping security findings locally stored behind a firewall.
  • OUTSCAN™ is an external security scanner in the SaaS model. It detects external networks vulnerabilities and protects sensitive data. It alerts security teams, proposes solutions and fixes them as quickly as possible to prevent hackers from entering into information systems.


And for Cloud technology, which is increasingly used by companies (83% of enterprises workloads will be in the Cloud by 2020 according ) but also, potentially more and more targeted by hackers, Outpost24 offers Elastic Workload Protector. It is a global solution for detecting vulnerabilities and misconfiguration across the company cloud infrastructure, whether public, private, or hybrid cloud. Agentless, the security teams stay in control of the changes made to information technology. The solution supports leading Cloud suppliers such as AWS, Microsoft Azure, or Google Cloud Platform and integrates their security best practices, as well as those of the Center for Internet Security (CIS) and the Cloud Security Alliance (CSA). Finally, it also refers to CVE vulnerabilities.


All three solutions allow busy security teams to know their weaknesses and prioritize them for remediation. Following good security practices and effectively managing vulnerabilities with solutions such as these will saves time and money. Finally, working with "products and services compatible with CVE provide better coverage, easier interoperability, and enhanced security," as CVE advocates.

The fight against cyber-attacks is continuous. The first step is to identify your risk level, and for this, we offer you a free trial of our solutions. It's your turn!


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