Attack surface management
Attack surface management definition
Attack surface management (ASM) is the process of identifying, assessing, and securing the externally accessible points in a software environment that an attacker can potentially exploit. This process includes understanding all of the hardware, software, network infrastructures, and user behavior within an organization to identify potential vulnerabilities.
Attack surface management examples
- Network security: In the context of network security, ASM involves monitoring open ports, exposed APIs, and other potential access points that hackers can exploit.
- Software development: During software development, ASM could entail ensuring that your code is free of potential vulnerabilities that could expose it to attacks.
Advantages and disadvantages of attack surface management
- Risk identification: ASM helps identify and prioritize potential risks, allowing companies to allocate resources efficiently to mitigate these risks.
- Proactive defense: ASM is a proactive measure aimed at preventing breaches before they happen, rather than reacting to them after the fact.
- Complexity: The complexity of modern digital environments can make comprehensive ASM a challenging task.
- Resources: ASM can require significant resources, both in terms of time and personnel, particularly for larger organizations.
Using attack surface management
- Continuous monitoring: To effectively manage the attack surface, it’s essential to continuously monitor and assess the environment for new potential vulnerabilities.
- Combine ASM with other security measures: ASM should not be used in isolation but as a part of a comprehensive security strategy. For example, using a VPN can help secure network connections.