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Vulnerability disclosure

Vulnerability disclosure definition

Vulnerability disclosure refers to the process of reporting information about a security vulnerability to the appropriate parties. This can include the organization or vendor responsible for the software or system, as well as any affected parties or the public in general. Vulnerability disclosure aims to increase security by allowing responsible parties to fix vulnerabilities before they can be exploited.

See also: vulnerability, vulnerability assessment, vulnerability management system

Key components of vulnerability disclosure:

  • Vulnerability identification and reporting. It’s the process of identifying a security vulnerability in a system, software, or application and reporting it to the company that owns it.
  • Vulnerability disclosure policy. It outlines the process for reporting vulnerabilities.
  • Vulnerability remediation. It’s the process of fixing the vulnerability to prevent it from being exploited.
  • Coordination with other parties. Vulnerabilities often affect other parties that should be included in the disclosure, such as security researchers and law enforcement agencies.
  • Clear communication. Effective communication between all parties involved is a key component in vulnerability disclosure.

Key stakeholders in vulnerability disclosure:

  • Vulnerability researchers discover and report vulnerabilities.
  • Vendors are the producer of the software, hardware, or the system containing the vulnerabilities.
  • Customers are the users affected by the vulnerabilities.
  • Regulators are government entities with oversight or relevant regulatory responsibilities.
  • Security organizations that include computer emergency response teams (CERTs), information security organizations, and other groups that provide security-related services or support.