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Cyber Security Trend Week in Review: Threat Reports, Patch Management, Ransomware

April 30, 2016

This week in the Cyber Security Trend Community offered not only useful food for thought on various types of malicious activities but also some practical things to do and/or be aware of regarding clear and present dangers for the multitude of exploits out there.  As such it highlights once again the need to not be just vigilant but also the imperative of keeping your sill sets and certifications as up-to-date as possible.  Unfortunately, the bad guys are extremely adroit as creating new and virulent variations on themes. 

This week’s review starts with a new report from Incapsula on the growing distributed denial of service landscape.  The Global DDoS Threat Landscape Report, illustrates the state of DDoS attacks and how targets respond. One major point is a change in attack patterns, with many DDoS attacks now pursuing the network and application layers. 

There is a common saying that “There is an app for that!”  In the security world we can say, “There is a patch for that!”  However, as special guests Tyler Reguly and Lane Thames, Tripwire, explain you need to manage patches better.  I will not spoil a great read except to entice you with the following quote:  “It is true, that in many cases, a vulnerability is resolved by the application of a patch but in many cases application of a patch is simply the first step in the remediation process. In a recent survey by Tripwire, 50% of those surveyed indicated that they or their team did not understand that there was a difference between applying a patch and remediating the related vulnerability. That number is too high.” 

There was a common theme this week about bad actors and their exploitation of human nature, along with the observation that non-malicious human error remains a significant cause of mayhem. In the Cyber Security Trend Community this was highlighted in an article by contributing writer Steve Anderson on the new report from Nuix.  It is based on a blog from subject matter expert Chirs Pogue titled appropriately, The Human Vulnerability.  Pogue believes that most professionals are turning to the wrong weapons and wrong tactics, needing instead to address human vulnerabilities.  Plus, be sure to click to our sister site, Cloud Security Resource Community, for a quick view (along with a link) to what I consider one of the most authoritative reports of the year, the Verizon 2016 Data Breach Investigations Report (DBIR).  Its headline too looked at how our willingness to trust is one of the best weapons bad guys use to gain access to seemingly protected information with email being a huge challenge. 

Finally, and you should bookmark the Talos site as a prime resource for keeping track of bad stuff in as it becomes exposed to the security industry, the Cisco Talos team had a very useful blog on the how the Samsam ransomware campaign successfully exploits a backdoor in the JBoss applications servers that are popular in the medical service industry.  

Weekend Reading

A gentle reminder that the Cyber Security Trend home page has links to valuable resources. This includes white papers and profiles for of certifications that can help you keep up with the bad guys and advance your career.  Two resources I recommend are, Official (ISC)² OnDemand Training and The Rise of the Cloud Security Professional Whitepaper

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