Verizon's 12-step program for thwarting data breaches

The downfall of victims stems from failure to follow the elementary steps all businesses should take to protect their assets

Verizon's just-released "2011 Data Breach Investigations Report" says businesses could prevent  most data breaches if they stick to security principles that are cheap and easy to implement.

The downfall of victims stems from failure to follow the elementary steps all businesses should take to protect their assets, the report says.

Attackers adapt to new defenses, but on the whole, they take the path of least resistance, which often means exploiting vulnerabilities that could be eliminated readily by implementing the basics, the authors of the report say.

MOBILE LEAKS: Skype for Android leaks user data

"As a whole, do you really think we're making them scramble to adapt?" they say. "Year after year our data seems to suggest that we are not, and that is something that needs to change. If they adapt, then they adapt. C'est la vie. But let's quit allowing them to find success in stagnation."

The report says 63% of breaches could be prevented through means it calls simple and cheap. Only 4% require preventive measures described as difficult and expensive.

GOOD GUYS: 12 "White Hat" hackers you should know

Here are the authors' recommendations based on the security incidents they reviewed this year.

  •  Pick the essential security controls and put them in place without exception. Then implement more advanced controls as needed.
  •  Change default credentials, create unique passwords and don't share them.
  •  Regularly review active accounts to make sure they are valid, necessary, properly configured and given only appropriate privileges.
  •  Restrict and monitor privileged users.
  •  Secure remote access services.
  •  Monitor and filter outbound traffic for communications that could halt ongoing data breaches.
  •  Test applications, review code and encourage developers to write more secure code.
  •  Implement effective monitoring for and response to critical log data that can flag breaches.
  •  Define suspicious and anomalous network behavior, look for it and send alerts when it is found.
  •  Reduce the time breaches are active (and therefore can do damage) with weekly review of basic breach indicators such as counting log lines for major spikes.
  •  Increase awareness of social engineering.
  •  Run regular incident tests and practice responses.

Read more about wide area network in Network World's Wide Area Network section.

Join the newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Rocket to Success - Your 10 Tips for Smarter ERP System Selection

Tags data breachesskypesecuritylegalanti-malwarecybercrime

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Tim Greene

Network World
Show Comments

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Ben Ramsden

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

Brainstorming, innovation, problem solving, and negotiation have all become much more productive and valuable if people can easily collaborate in real time with minimal friction.

Sarah Ieroianni

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

The print quality also does not disappoint, it’s clear, bold, doesn’t smudge and the text is perfectly sized.

Ratchada Dunn

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The Huddle Board’s built in program; Sharp Touch Viewing software allows us to easily manipulate and edit our documents (jpegs and PDFs) all at the same time on the dashboard.

George Khoury

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The biggest perks for me would be that it comes with easy to use and comprehensive programs that make the collaboration process a whole lot more intuitive and organic

David Coyle

Brother PocketJet PJ-773 A4 Portable Thermal Printer

I rate the printer as a 5 out of 5 stars as it has been able to fit seamlessly into my busy and mobile lifestyle.

Kurt Hegetschweiler

Brother PocketJet PJ-773 A4 Portable Thermal Printer

It’s perfect for mobile workers. Just take it out — it’s small enough to sit anywhere — turn it on, load a sheet of paper, and start printing.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?