Cyber Attacks Targeting Applications
The need for proactive endpoint scanning to find and fix issues
A recent report from Hewlett Packard Enterprise called the HPE Cyber Risk Report 2016 identified seven key themes for the current cyber attacks threat landscape, which are very illustrative. One of the themes is, “Attackers have shifted their efforts to directly attack applications”. According to the report, attackers have “shifted their focus from servers and operating systems to applications”. The perimeter of corporate network is extending from being within corporate walls to devices as well, and it is no surprise that attackers are finding it easier as well as effective to attack endpoints and applications directly to gain access to corporate network and data.
With this clear shift underway, IT departments can no longer afford to secure endpoints only reactively based on vulnerability databases and other environmental data that they gather from OS providers, app vendors and third-parties. They also need to scan the endpoints for their state, setting parameters, configurations, applications installed, processes running, disk space being used and other “endpoint parameters” as well, because it is not enough to monitor and secure the network and data only from one end while the attacker is attacking the other.
It used to be that attackers had to first break through the corporate firewall and network in order to get to an endpoint and exploit a vulnerability. With endpoints proliferating like they are and increasingly working out of the corporate network, firewall and other safety nets, scanning endpoints proactively to find potential vulnerabilities and issues in real time and fix them quickly is fast becoming the need of the hour for IT.