A red team comprises a group of IT professionals (either internal company employees or a third-party contractor) that simulates the potential actions of a threat actor to test a company’s cybersecurity posture. The individuals that compose a red team are also known as ethical hackers. Red teaming is the process of challenging every security control, policy, and system in every conceivable way to compromise a company’s system, network, or specific IT asset.
Regulatory compliance over information and cybersecurity ensures consumer information remains private or data stays away from malicious actors. Regulations may apply to government agencies and healthcare organizations, financial services companies, and other industries but can extend to the other companies that contract with these organizations. They’re issued by federal, state, and local governments and industry regulators and can apply to companies doing business in specific geographic regions or those operating in a specific industry.
Remediation is the elimination of a risk or threat. It goes hand-in-hand with mitigation, which is the process of limiting the potential damage of a threat. Mitigation is often a temporary solution until the threat is remediated.
Reputational risk is any risk your company takes that can damage brand loyalty resulting in loss of sales. While that sometimes includes customer service failures and environmental impact, enterprises lose customers when they lose customer data. In an effort to regain trust, companies spend millions of dollars to put in new security measures, revisit marketing campaigns, and hire new executives.
Not only is a cybersecurity risk assessment an essential part of any security practice, but some organizations must also perform a risk assessment to meet regulatory compliance standards. These assessments point out security deficiencies, failures in best practices, and potential loopholes waiting for hackers to exploit. A risk assessment can vary in scope and purpose, but the broader, the better when it comes to cybersecurity.
Security teams use metrics called risk indicators or key risk indicators (KRIs) to measure the company’s cyber risk and prioritize remediation and mitigation efforts. Risk indicators include things like common vulnerabilities and exposures (CVEs), invalid certificates, previously unknown shadow IT, credential exposure, non-compliance with security policies, compromised files, instances of malware, TLS/SSL certificate misconfigurations, weak encryption methods, and any other factor that contributes to the company’s risk profile.
Cyber risk management involves all the actions IT professionals take to prioritize cybersecurity within an organization and reduce vulnerabilities across the business. Part of risk management may be compliance with industry regulatory agencies and spreading awareness of operational risks across all departments when working online.
Risk mitigation reduces the potential damage an organization will suffer when a breach occurs. While some risks will always be present when operating online, mitigation procedures are intended to reduce any damage that occurs when those risks turn into exploits. Part of a cybersecurity risk mitigation plan might also include communications and marketing procedures to avoid the reputational risk caused by a data breach.
Security professionals often face many more issues than they can realistically mitigate immediately. They use risk prioritization to determine which risks pose the most serious consequences based on the assets impacted, their connections, exploitability, and other factors.
Risk scoring is a method security professionals often use to compare and prioritize the severity or exploitability of vulnerabilities. Quantifying the level of risk based on a rating scale provides a more objective way to determine which vulnerabilities to address first. Attack surface management solutions use risk scoring and other methods to prioritize risks and inform security teams of the most serious risks.
Businesses always face some level of risk. Risk tolerance is the amount of risk the company is willing to accept. The risk tolerance threshold varies depending on factors such as the assets involved and the value of the data at risk.
Also known as a malicious asset, a rogue asset is an asset created by a threat actor or an asset stolen by and under the control of a threat actor.