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Inventory Authorized and Unauthorized Software

by Josef Weiss
May 27, 2016

A good vulnerability management program requires that an organization also know the software installed on its systems. This dashboard and its components provide information to analysts about software that is discovered on the network. According to the Center for Internet Security (CIS), Critical Security Control (CSC) Control 2 (CSC 2) is the Inventory of Authorized and Unauthorized Software.

CSC 2: Actively manage (inventory, track, and correct) all software on the network so that only authorized software is installed and can execute, and that unauthorized and unmanaged software is found and prevented from installation or execution.

Maintaining a detailed list of software used on computers in the network can be a very difficult task. However, using Tenable SecurityCenter Continuous View (CV), security professionals can collect information about software installed on a network using three distinct methods. The first method is active scanning with credentials. This allows the analyst to analyze each computer to collect the information about installed software. The second method is to passively monitor the network, and text software by analyzing live traffic on the network. The third method is by using system event logs from workstations and servers. This allows software inventory to be tracked using different events that monitor change control.

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 5.0.0
  • Nessus 6.6.2
  • PVS 5.0.0
  • LCE 4.8

SecurityCenter CV enables the organization to react to advanced threats, zero-day vulnerabilities, and new forms of regulatory compliance. The Tenable Log Correlation Engine (LCE) provides log inspection to continuously discover and track users, applications, cloud infrastructure, trust relationships, and vulnerabilities. The Tenable Passive Vulnerability Scanner (PVS) performs deep packet inspection enabling discovery and assessment of operating systems, network devices, hypervisors, databases, tablets, phones, web servers, cloud applications, and critical infrastructure. SecurityCenter CV provides a unique combination of detection, reporting, and pattern recognition utilizing industry recognized algorithms and models.

The dashboard contains the following components:

  • ASD Top 4 Mitigation Strategies - List of Software - This component provides a detailed list of software currently discovered on the network.
  • Common Application Vendors - Vulnerability Summary - This component displays various application vendors by row, and enumerates any found vulnerabilities across the columns.
  • Executive Summary - Outstanding Patches by Operating System - The “Outstanding Patches by Operating System” component is a table with counts of vulnerabilities based on the OS local security check plugins.
  • ASD Top 4 Mitigation Strategies - Software Modification Events - This component provides an indicator for file changes or modification events collected from systems with LCE Clients installed, or from systems where syslogs are collected.
  • Potentially Unwanted Software - Host Summary - This component provides a host summary table reports the counts of system, which match the plugin 59641 (Malicious Process Detection: Potentially Unwanted Software). The md5sum of one or more running process on the remote Windows host matches software known to violate some corporate policies. Verify that the remote processes are authorized in your environment.