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Microsoft SQL Server Audit Results

by Cody Dumont
April 29, 2016

Governance, Risk Management, and Compliance (GRC) is a substantial part of any information assurance program. GRC requires information systems to be audited, regardless of the standard to which the audit is performed. This report provides audit results for Microsoft SQL Server database systems.

One of the initial steps in a successful GRC program is to set configuration guidelines, and establish a supportable set of security policies. SecurityCenter Continuous View (CV) can measure compliance using audit files that cover a wide range of major regulations and other auditable standards.  Tenable provides over 500 audit files in the SecurityCenter feed and are available for download from the Tenable Support Portal, in categories such as operating systems, applications, databases, and network devices. Tenable products can be used to audit systems based on SCAP content. Additionally, many Tenable audit policies have been certified by the Center for Internet Security (CIS). More information about audit files can be found in the Tenable Discussion Forums, Tenable Support Portal, Nessus Compliance Checks, and Nessus Compliance Reference.

SecurityCenter (CV) using Nessus has several built-in functions to perform Microsoft SQL Server database compliance checks. Microsoft SQL Server database compliance checks can be conducted by executing commands from the command line, Application Program Interface (API), and several other methods. There are also built-in checks that detect password length, permission management, and Suspicious File Content. Other more complex checks can use regular expressions and other pattern matching methods.

Audit files are easily created or modified to support an organization’s existing security policies. When an audit scan is performed, for each individual compliance check, Nessus attempts to determine if the host is compliant, non-compliant, or if the results are inconclusive and need to be verified manually. Unlike a vulnerability check that only reports if the vulnerability is actually present, a compliance check always reports a result. The data collected can be used as a baseline for an audit report to show that a host passed or failed a specific test, or if configuration checks could not be properly tested.

The report is 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 Compliance & Configuration Assessments. The report requirements are: 

  • SecurityCenter 5.1.0
  • Nessus 6.5.4
  • Compliance Data
  • This dashboard requires “Full Text Search” to be enabled for each analyzed repository.

SecurityCenter CV is the market leader in providing a unique combination of vulnerability detection, compliance auditing, and reporting. SecurityCenter CV supports auditing more technologies than any other vendor, including operating systems, network devices, hypervisors, databases, tablets, phones, web servers, and critical infrastructure. Nessus is continuously updated with information about advanced threats and zero-day vulnerabilities, and new types of regulatory compliance configuration audits. This makes SecurityCenter CV the market-defining continuous network monitoring platform, and Nessus the market-defining vulnerability scanner for auditors and security analysts.


Executive Summary - This chapter provides a high level view of the audit checks currently listed in the cumulative database, and a trending chart over the past 90 days.

Audit Summary - To assist in prioritizing remediation tasks, this chapter provides a list of compliance check failures along with affected systems.  The chapter starts with a severity-based pie chart followed by three sections covering audit checks which have failed, require a manual review, and have passed.  Each section contains tables and bar charts displaying the relative data.