The external attack surface is the portion of a company’s IT infrastructure that is exposed to attacks from outside the organization. This includes all devices and systems that are connected to the Internet, as well as any other systems that can be accessed by outsiders. While the internal attack surface is important, the external attack surface is often the most vulnerable to attack.
There are a number of ways to protect your business from outside threats. One of the most important is to keep your systems and data secure. This includes ensuring that only authorized users have access to sensitive information, and that all data is properly encrypted. Additionally, it is important to have a robust firewall in place to protect your network from external attacks.
Another way to protect your business is to educate your employees about security risks and how to avoid them. This includes teaching them about phishing scams, social engineering attacks, and other types of malicious activity. Additionally, it is important to have policies and procedures in place so that employees know what to do if they suspect that their accounts have been compromised.
By taking steps to secure your external attack surface, you can help protect your business from outside threats.
The External Attack Surface: How to Protect Your Business from Outside Threats
he external attack surface is the portion of a system that is exposed to attacks from outside. This can include exposed ports, services, and applications. To protect your business from outside threats, you need to carefully consider what parts of your system are exposed and take steps to reduce the risk.
One way to reduce the risk is to segment your network so that only the bare minimum of systems are exposed to the internet. Another way to reduce the risk is to carefully monitor activity on your exposed systems and quickly patch any vulnerabilities that are discovered.
The best way to protect your business from outside threats is to have a comprehensive security plan that includes both prevention and detection measures. By taking steps to reduce your exposure and being prepared to detect and respond to attacks, you can minimize the impact of any potential threats.
What is an external attack surface?
n external attack surface is the portion of a system that is exposed to potential attackers. This can include any interfaces that allow access to the system, such as public-facing web applications, remote access services, and exposed API endpoints. The goal of an attacker is to find weaknesses in the system that can be exploited to gain access or cause damage. By reducing the external attack surface, it becomes more difficult for an attacker to find a way in.
Identifying and classifying your external attack surface
here are many ways to identify and classify your external attack surface. One way is to use the Open Source Vulnerability Database (OSVDB) to look up known vulnerabilities for the products and services you use. Another way is to run a port scan of your external IP address range to see what services are open and accessible. You can also use a tool like Shodan to find devices and services connected to the internet.
Once you have a list of products and services, you can start to classify them by type. For example, web applications, database servers, email servers, and so on. This will help you prioritize which areas to focus on first when hardening your security.
One final tip is to regularly monitor your external attack surface for changes. This can be done manually or using a tool like tripwire. By keeping track of changes, you can quickly identify new vulnerabilities or services that have been added without your knowledge.
Reducing your external attack surface
educing your external attack surface means making it harder for attackers to find and exploit vulnerabilities in your systems. There are a few ways to do this:
1. Keep your software up to date. Attackers often target known vulnerabilities in outdated software. By keeping your software up to date, you can close these holes before attackers can exploit them.
2. Use security features like firewalls and intrusion detection/prevention systems. These tools can help block or detect attacks before they can do damage.
3. Minimize the amount of information you make available publicly. If attackers can’t find information about your systems, they’ll have a harder time targeting them. Be sure to limit what you share on social media, in job postings, and on your website.
4. Educate your employees about security threats and best practices. Your employees are often the first line of defense against attacks. By teaching them about common threats and how to spot them, you can help reduce the chances of an attack succeeding.
The top 10 most common external attacks
here are many types of external attacks that can be launched against a company or organization. Here are the top 10 most common external attacks:
1. Denial-of-service (DoS) attack: A DoS attack is an attempt to make a computer or network resource unavailable to users. It can be accomplished by flooding the target with traffic, overwhelming it with requests, or crashing it with malicious code.
2. Phishing: Phishing is a type of social engineering attack in which an attacker attempts to trick victims into revealing sensitive information, such as passwords or credit card numbers. Attackers often do this by sending emails that appear to come from a legitimate source, such as a bank or financial institution.
3. Malware: Malware is short for malicious software, and refers to any software that is designed to harm a computer or its user. Common types of malware include viruses, worms, and Trojan horses.
4. SQL injection: SQL injection is a type of attack that allows an attacker to execute malicious code on a database server. This can be done by inserting malicious code into an SQL query that is then executed by the server.
5. Cross-site scripting (XSS): Cross-site scripting (XSS) is a type of attack that injects malicious code into a web page. This code is then executed by unsuspecting users who visit the page.
6. Password guessing: Password guessing is a type of attack in which an attacker tries to guess the password of an account. This can be done by using common passwords, or by using dictionary attacks or brute-force attacks.
7. Man-in-the-middle attack (MitM): A man-in-the-middle attack (MitM) is a type of attack in which an attacker intercepts communication between two parties and impersonates one of them. This can be done in order to eavesdrop on the conversation, or to modify the communications in some way.
8. Distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) attack: A DDoS attack is similar to a DoS attack, but it involves multiple computers attacking the same target simultaneously. This can make it much more difficult to defend against than a single DoS attack.
9. Session hijacking: Session hijacking is a type of attack in which an attacker takes over an active session between two computers. This can be done by stealing session cookies or using other methods to impersonate one of the parties involved in the session.
10. DNS spoofing: DNS spoofing is a type of attack in which an attacker modifies DNS records in order to redirect traffic from one website to another. This can be used to redirect users to fake websites in order to steal their login credentials or other sensitive information.”
How to prevent external attacks
here are a number of ways you can prevent external attacks:
1. Use a firewall: A firewall is a barrier between your computer and the internet. It can help to block unwanted traffic and protect your computer from malicious attacks.
2. Keep your software up to date: Make sure you have the latest security patches and updates for your operating system and other software programs.
3. Use strong passwords: Choose strong passwords that are difficult to guess. Avoid using easily guessed words like your name or birthdate.
4. Be cautious of email attachments: Don’t open email attachments from people you don’t know. These can contain viruses or malware that can infect your computer.
5. Don’t click on links in email messages: Be wary of links in email messages, even if they come from people you know. These links could take you to malicious websites that could infect your computer with viruses or malware.
How to respond to an external attack
n the event of an external attack, it is important to take quick and decisive action in order to minimize damage and protect your organization. Here are a few tips on how to respond to an external attack:
1. Notify your security team or incident response team immediately.
2. Isolate the affected systems from the rest of your network to prevent the spread of the attack.
3. Begin collecting evidence of the attack, such as logs, network traffic captures, and system images. This evidence will be critical for identifying the source of the attack and for taking appropriate corrective action.
4. Notify relevant stakeholders, such as upper management, legal counsel, and law enforcement, of the attack.
5. Work with your security team or incident response team to develop and implement a plan to contain and remediate the attack. This plan should include steps such as identifying and patching vulnerabilities that were exploited by the attacker, restoring affected systems from backups, and implementing new security controls to prevent future attacks.
The future of external attack prevention