Monday 30th January 2023

BLOG: Vulnerability Prioritization

Vulnerability prioritization is identifying, assessing, and prioritizing vulnerabilities in your organization’s systems, applications, and infrastructure. This process is essential for maintaining the security of your organization and protecting against cyber threats.

The first step in vulnerability prioritization is identifying vulnerabilities. This can be done through a variety of methods, including vulnerability scanning, penetration testing, and manual testing. Once vulnerabilities have been identified, they must be assessed to determine their risk level. This assessment takes into account factors such as the potential impact of the vulnerability, the likelihood of it being exploited, and the ease of exploitation.

Once vulnerabilities have been assessed, they must be prioritized based on their risk level. This allows organizations to focus their resources on the most critical vulnerabilities first. Prioritizing vulnerabilities is important because it enables organizations to address the most significant risks to their systems and data before they can be exploited by attackers.

When prioritizing vulnerabilities, organizations should consider the following factors:

  • The potential impact of the vulnerability: This includes the potential damage that could be caused by a successful exploit, such as data loss or a disruption of service.
  • The likelihood of the vulnerability being exploited: This takes into account factors such as the ease of exploitation and the number of potential attack vectors.
  • The ease of exploitation: This includes the level of skill and resources required to exploit the vulnerability.
  • The availability of a patch or workaround: This takes into account whether a patch or workaround is available to address the vulnerability.

Once vulnerabilities have been prioritized, organizations can develop and implement a plan to address them. This includes applying patches, implementing workarounds, and configuring security controls to prevent exploitation. It is important to note that the process of vulnerability prioritization should be ongoing, as new vulnerabilities are discovered and new threats emerge. Zero-day vulnerabilities are also software security flaws that can be extremely detrimental. A zero-day vulnerability is a software security flaw that is known to the software vendor but doesn’t have a patch in place to fix the flaw. Before the vulnerability is corrected, attackers may use the flaw to cause a programming/network disruption. Zero-day is when a vulnerability is notified, this results in a fix or solution being formed in order to prevent exploitation. The key area of focus regarding zero-day vulnerability is to remember is that days after day zero, there will likely have been no patch or protection created, which increases the chance of a successful attack on the unsuspecting system. Zero-day exploits are registered by MITRE as a Common Vulnerability Exposure (CVE).

We utilize our top-notch technologies to gather, categorize, preserve and examine vast amounts of cyber risk data sourced from various technical and non-technical sources. Our cutting-edge analytical methods, which utilize machine learning, along with our knowledgeable analysts, allow us to discern what dangers are being exploited by threat actors and when this changes. Our vulnerability management not only assists in prioritizing but also demonstrates the existence of crucial vulnerabilities within your supply chain.

Orpheus research has found that approximately only 0.5% of CVEs are ever exploited, The Orpheus dashboard allows users to prioritize and address the vulnerabilities that pose the most risk to them, effectively reducing costs and risk by focusing on the most critical issues. Vulnerability prioritization is an essential process for maintaining the security of your organization. It allows organizations to identify, assess, and prioritize vulnerabilities, so they can focus their resources on the most critical risks to their systems and data. By regularly prioritizing vulnerabilities, organizations can reduce their risk and protect against cyber threats.

Download our latest Ministry of Defence Whitepaper here to discover how we leverage threat intelligence and machine learning to help organisations to stay protected by patching less.

Find out more about our Risk-Based Vulnerability Management here

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