In recent years, foreign threat actors have used geopolitical events to launch devastating cyber-attacks on private enterprises and public entities across the healthcare, finance, energy utilities, defense, and critical infrastructure verticals. These attacks are primarily intended to create confusion, disable support architecture while holding it for ransom, disrupt markets, and undermine the security of countries and governments around the world. In light of the developing situation in Ukraine, the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Agency (CISA) has warned businesses and entities across critical sectors like finance, energy/utilities, and local and state governments to be prepared for highly damaging ransomware attacks that could disrupt and cripple U.S. critical infrastructure.
CISA is specifically asking organizations to take proactive steps to assess their risks, improve resilience, and identify ways to mitigate the impact of potential ransomware attacks. So how do organizations ensure that they proactively understand their risk, make informed decisions, and prioritize efforts and resources to improve their resilience against a potentially advanced adversary with nothing to lose?
Proactive threat assessments powered by breach and attack simulation (BAS) can help organizations monitor and enhance their situational awareness and improve their readiness against such threats. BAS tools enable organizations to continuously execute attacks against their security controls, correlate results to help visualize security gaps, and leverage contextual insights to highlight remediation efforts. As a result, these assessments allow security teams to actively harden their security posture by achieving the following key objectives.
Evaluating the Threat Landscape for Threats that Matter
Rather than spending days or weeks on in-house research, security teams can instead quickly leverage their trusted threat intelligence and the vast library of advanced attacks offered by BAS tools to quickly pinpoint the threats, ransomware or otherwise, that are most applicable to the organization. They can then focus their efforts on developing an actionable plan that considers their risk tolerance, the impact of the assessment on their security environment, and the types of simulations that would help them achieve their planned objectives.
How SafeBreach can provide value – SafeBreach offers the industry’s largest continuously updated attack playbook. With over 24,000 attack methods, our Hacker’s Playbook™ is constantly updated by the SafeBreach Labs research team with the latest tactics and techniques and includes a commitment to add newly identified attacks within 24 hours. SafeBreach users can immediately check if their organization is protected against any newly discovered threats, ransomware or otherwise.
Validating Security Control Effectiveness and Identifying Gaps
By leveraging a BAS tool to simulate full-kill chain ransomware attacks against the deployed network and cloud controls, organizations can test whether security controls are correctly configured and evaluate their efficacy and performance in detecting or preventing ransomware attacks. This highlights any existing gaps that need to be addressed and helps in the cost/benefit analysis of existing controls, so organizations can make the most of resources and budgets. This type of data can then be used to inform key areas of focus, improvements plans, and forward-looking roadmaps.
How SafeBreach can provide value – SafeBreach offers a powerful and versatile BAS tool that allows security teams to safely execute a variety of realistic attacks against their security controls to ensure they are operating optimally, both individually and in orchestration with other tools in the technology stack. Organizations can then use attack simulation data to identify critical gaps, optimize configurations, pinpoint tool inefficiencies, and create a stronger security foundation for the future.
Providing a Baseline of General Preparedness & Reducing Future Risk
By continuously testing and validating security control performance, an organization can understand and visualize its current level of readiness in order to identify areas where immediate remediation actions are needed to minimize risk. These continuous assessments also act as a valuable tool to measure progress in areas of shortcomings. An initial assessment can be used as a baseline against which all future assessment results can be compared, providing insight into whether proactive modifications have been successfully implemented if there has been a tangible improvement in an organization’s ability to handle a security incident, and how the level of risk has been quantifiably reduced.
How SafeBreach can provide value – SafeBreach’s MITRE ATT&CK board summarizes simulation findings for each ransomware technique and tactic tested within an organization’s specific environment. Security teams can simulate ransomware-focused attacks and understand the scope and the breadth of associated attack behaviors based on the MITRE ATT&CK lifecycle. This helps organizations quickly visualize their security posture and focus on the areas most in need of remediation, allowing organizations to effectively harden defenses against potential ransomware threats.
Aligning Stakeholders and Prioritizing Resources
Proactive assessments can provide quantitative metrics around an organization’s current state of ransomware preparedness that provide valuable insight to boards, leadership teams, and other relevant stakeholders. This helps align stakeholders on common goals, resourcing needs, and roadmap items to support more proactive and offensive incident response and crisis management programs moving forward.
How SafeBreach can provide value – SafeBreach empowers security teams to communicate findings via customizable dashboards and reports to deliver the intelligence stakeholders need to formulate security plans, justify investments, and enhance a lean security foundation. As a result, organizations can use a data-driven approach to prioritize remediation activities, generate consensus on KPIs and other long-term security improvements, and minimize overall business risk against ransomware threats.
When successfully implemented, proactive threat assessments that are executed with the help of BAS tools provide tangible value with an immediate business impact, including the ability to understand the efficacy of existing systems, identify gaps, reduce risk, inform resourcing decisions, and support alignment when facing formidable and evolving threats. This is especially true within the context of today’s cybersecurity environment, which has seen a dramatic increase in the type, number, and severity of ransomware attacks.
SafeBreach can be a crucial ally to fight against advanced ransomware threats, helping any organization develop a more offensive security strategy and hardened security posture based on contextual, data-driven insights. Apply to participate in our SafeBreach Ransomware Challenge today and see how SafeBreach can help secure your organization against ransomware and other advanced threats.