Cybersecurity is more complex than ever before. Threats grow increasingly sophisticated, with cybercriminals employing automation to scale up the number and frequency of their attacks. These attacks often unfold in phases over weeks making them harder to detect. At the same time, multiplex IT environments are making it tougher for companies to maintain organizational control of their networks.

There is no level of investment in prevention that can provide complete immunity from attacks in this environment. Instead, the ability to rapidly detect and efficiently respond to threats should be the goal. To successfully shift toward this more proactive security posture, you’ll need to take a fresh approach to your tools and processes. Here are four questions to get you started.

Where is my most sensitive data?

The bulk of data breaches are perpetrated by external actors, so it makes sense that organizations and vendors focus so heavily on endpoint security. Securing your company’s laptops, tablets, and smartphones is certainly critical, but concentrating focus on end-user devices still leaves the data they’re accessing vulnerable at its source—your data center. This treasure trove of confidential information, product development plans, source code, and other sensitive data is what cyber attackers are after. Leaving it inadequately protected is an invitation for a devastating breach from which your company may be unable to recover. Make protecting it a priority.

How is the cloud going to impact my data center?

The cloud has brought unparalleled flexibility and scalability to IT infrastructure. But those same benefits make it challenging to secure data center assets. The elasticity of cloud IT infrastructure means the very nature of your data center can change quickly. If your security products expect static IP addresses, for instance, you will run into issues fast. And the popularity of DevOps and microservices have made environments even more fluid with assets being spun up and down constantly. Securing your data in the cloud requires a consistent level of awareness and cloud-native security solutions.

What do I need to do to gain visibility across my environment?

Cyber-attacks can come from any direction. It’s essential you understand where all your assets are, who needs to access them and when, and how these factors may be leaving them vulnerable. This requires comprehensive visibility into your endpoints, cloud environment (What are your assets, policies, and configurations?), SaaS environment (Who are your users? What resources are they accessing? What data they are sharing?), and custom apps (Are there any unique vulnerabilities that may not have been tested for?). Once you’ve accounted for all your assets, you’ll need to determine the appropriate level of protection for them based on their value and the potential impact of a breach within the context of your unique environment.

Where do I get the intelligence I need to protect me from emerging threats?

Threat intelligence refers to data on emerging or existing threats and threat actors, and it will be an important component of your security platform. It can help you better understand threats and attackers to which you are vulnerable and enable you to make more informed security decisions. In the event you become the victim of a breach, threat intelligence can help understand how the attack is progressing and how you should tailor your response. After an attack, it helps you understand what happened and what additional security protections or remediations you should deploy to provide greater upfront protection. There are several open-source threat intelligence feeds available you can subscribe to, and many vendors include threat intelligence as part of their security solutions.

Let us do the hard work.

These are not the only questions you need to ask when building out a security platform, but they will get the project rolling in the right direction. However, it’s crucial to understand that today’s cybersecurity environment requires continuous monitoring and response. Most organizations do not have the resources to do this on their own. Partnering with a proven MDR provider is often the most expedient way to answer these questions and achieve your desired security outcomes. Contact us today to speak with a representative about how Alert Logic can help improve your security posture.

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