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Account Status Indicators

by David Schwalenberg
August 20, 2014

Managing user accounts, group memberships, and passwords can be a difficult task.  Using SecurityCenter Continuous View (CV), security analysts can audit password policies, monitor the membership of groups, and other account related settings. This dashboard contains several components that provide queries for plugins associated with user account settings and group memberships. One component also triggers on password compliance checks. 

The dashboard and its components are available in the SecurityCenter Feed, a comprehensive collection of dashboards, reports, assurance report cards and assets. The dashboard can be easily located in the SecurityCenter Feed under the category Monitoring.

The dashboard requirements are:

  • SecurityCenter 4.8.1
  • Nessus 5.2.7
  • Audit files with password checks 

Organizations using SecurityCenter CV have the ability to deploy an unlimited number of Nessus scanners and integrate with Nessus Enterprise Cloud services (additional licensing).  The ability to use on-premises scanners and cloud-based scanners allows security professionals to scale as needed and provide a more in-depth view into an organization’s vulnerabilities. 


Account Status Indicators - Administrators Groups: This component provides quick access to several plugins that identify users within administrative groups.  There are 4 plugins identified with this indicator style matrix.  Each of the plugins provides information on the group membership of the Windows Administrator group, for the Local SAM database and the Domain Admins group.  Indicators are present for the detection of SMB blank passwords, and default passwords that are susceptible to the W32/Deloder worm.  Indicators will turn blue when a match is found for all triggered events, except the W32/Deloder indicator, which will turn red. 

Account Status Indicators - Local Users Information: This component provides information on user accounts such as disabled accounts, unused accounts, ability to change password, passwords that have never been changed, and if passwords have expired.  There are two series of plugins, one looks at the local SAM database, the second looks at Active Directory. Plugins 10895 to 10900 have the prefix Microsoft Windows - Users Information, these enumerate user account information from Active Directory.  Plugins 10911 to 10916 have the prefix Microsoft Windows - Local Users Information, and collect data from local SAM database.  The matrix cell turns blue when a match of the plugins is found. 

Account Status Indicators - Windows SMB Account Information: This component provides indicators for several Microsoft Windows SMB plugins that focus on user account information.  Some examples are: Guessable User Credentials, Enumerate Local Users, and Last Logged in User. 

Account Status Indicators - Local Group Enumeration: When conducting scans of Windows systems, the Windows plugin family conducts several local security checks. These checks include enumerating user and group memberships.  When preparing the scan policy, plugins 10399 (SMB Use Domain SID to Enumerate Users) and 10860 (SMB Use Host SID to Enumerate Local Users) require a start and end UID range.  By default, the UID range is 1000 to 1200.  By setting these plugins to use a greater range, Nessus will be able to better ascertain and enumerate the user accounts. 

Account Status Indicators - Compliance Checks for Password Settings: This component provides indicators for compliance checks focused on a password policies.  For checks that contain the word ‘password’ in the description name, the appropriate indicator will trigger.  The indicator is green for systems that have passed compliance, and red for systems that have failed the compliance check.  The orange indicator means that a manual review of the settings are required to determine if the settings are in compliance or not. 

Account Status Indicators - Group Memberships: There are several default groups such as the administrators, server operators, account operators, backup operators, print operators, and replicator; this matrix provides an easy method to monitor these memberships. 

Account Status Indicators - Users and SID Information: This component provides easy access to several plugins used to collect information about user accounts and security identifiers (SID).  These indicators monitor account enumeration using the SID, disabled accounts, users who have never logged in, and more.

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