Two of the 6 basic security controls, according to the Center for Internet Security, are focused on the current state of your assets. Assessing the state of your assets has been a priority for years, but the old means aren’t as effective in modern infrastructure as they were on legacy systems. These two critical controls - Continuous Vulnerability Management and Secure Configuration for Hardware and Software on Mobile Devices, Laptops, Workstations and Servers - are a foundational part of any security program, but you’ll run into implementation challenges if you simply drag legacy tools into a cloud environment. That’s why osquery, a light weight and cloud friendly universal agent, is quickly becoming the go-to for helping to secure cloud workloads, in part through the effective application of these two critical controls. Let’s explore how.
The Current State of Enterprise Security: Fragmentation and Fatigue
In a recent blog post, we discussed some of the issues with proprietary agents and the challenges they pose to enterprises. For example, most security solutions deploy separate and proprietary agents for audit/compliance, threat detection, vulnerability detection and incident response.
While endpoint agents have always tried to be the eyes and ears for security, an overabundance of them may be degrading security rather than improving it. A 2017 survey from Barkly and Ponemon Institute finds that companies have as many as seven different agents running on each endpoint, while at the same time, three out of four report still having difficulty managing endpoint risk. Other security solutions require agents for compliance, data leakage, vulnerability and patch management, network security solutions, systems management, and more. The industry has gone agent crazy, it seems, resulting in significant performance issues, escalating licensing costs, conflicts with other services running on the endpoints, maintenance headaches, difficulties for upgrades and certification issues, and more.
There is a growing and passionate community around osquery, actively sharing information and perspective, answering questions, exposing challenges and dispelling misconceptions. Even so, learning the basics as you're getting started requires a lot of piecing together bits of wisdom (ie Googling + Reading + Networking). The intention of this post is to a) curate some of the great content from the community b) organize it to cover common questions for beginners c) incorporate some of what we've learned over the past three years through the Uptycs journey. If you like it, and it is helpful, throw a comment down below or let us know on Twitter and we'll create a more advanced FAQ next time around.
It is not often that one runs into situations that so purely fit a classic stereotype. Securing and monitoring Docker containers happens to be one of those conundrums that is a textbook example of a “damned if you do and damned if you don’t” setup. On the surface, securing and monitoring containers seems like a straightforward affair – treat containers like mini virtual machines, and run your security/monitoring agents in each container; or, treat them like processes running on the host OS, and run your security/monitoring agents on the host OS. Sounds simple enough. However, both options run into some surprisingly natty difficulties.
AHHHH! GDPR day is upon us!
If you've used a service or signed up for anything ever in your life then you've surely noticed the onslaught of "Terms of Privacy Update" emails over the last couple of days. That could only mean one thing: GDPR implementation day has finally arrived! But for all the unavoidable noise around GDPR, we couldn't help but notice a lack in any advice or documentation about osquery and its link to Personally Identifiable Information (PII) -- a focal area in the GDPR regulation (here's a "handy" 100 page reference guide on GDPR). So, let's get right to it then.
Late last week, Chris Sanders (@chrissanders88), a former FireEye colleague, posted an interesting "lunchtime poll":
I’ve written before about how I feel open-source technology will prove disruptive in the security industry. Having recently returned from a week in San Francisco for B-Sides SF & RSA, which is known as the annual pilgrimage for "Infosec Sales," I feel that way now more than ever. The growth in adoption of open-source technologies may indicate that people are starting to get more comfortable with the concept or ability of their still being enough room for innovation that companies can charge for what they develop on top of “free” open-source projects. Coming back from the premier sales conference for the information security industry is a great showcase for why I’ve come away with that thought. Let's explore...