Exposure Management: How to Get Ahead of Cyber Risk
The Role of Exposure Management in Building Cybersecurity Programs
Exposure management gives a broad view across your modern attack surface so your organization can better understand your cyber risk and make better business decisions. By understanding what your attack surface looks like and where you have the greatest risk, your IT and security teams will be better poised to address cyber risk from both a technical and business standpoint.
In this knowledgebase, we take a closer look at what exposure management is, how it’s based on the foundation of risk-based vulnerability management and explore its benefits in helping protect your organization from cyberattacks.
Learn more about:
Reducing Risk in the Modern Attack Surface
Exposure management gives you the visibility you need to reduce cyber risk.Learn More
Get Visibility, Prevent Attacks, Communicate Risk
How predictive threat context and objective metrics help prevent cyberattacks.Learn More
Exposure Management FAQ
Have questions about exposure management? Check out this FAQ.Learn More
How to Build an Exposure Management Program
With five steps, you’ll be on your way to building an exposure management program.Learn More
Join the Exposure Management Community
Join other professionals interested in learning more about exposure management.Learn More
The Benefits of Exposure Management
Explore some of the many benefits of an exposure management strategy.Learn More
Choosing an Exposure Management Solution
Here are some things you should look for in an exposure management solution.Learn More
Anticipate Attacks. Proactively Reduce Risk.
Tenable One is the only exposure management platform you’ll need for a single, unified view of your modern attack surface. With Tenable One, you’ll be empowered to anticipate the consequences of cyberattacks and proactively address and manage cyber risk for all of your assets, everywhere.
2022 Gartner Exposure Management Report
It can be challenging to keep up with your constantly evolving threat landscape. As new threats emerge and your attack surface expands, your security teams may feel like they’re constantly stuck in reactive mode, focused on responding to incidents instead of actively seeking potential attacks out and shoring up your cyber defenses.
Yet, it’s imperative to be able to reduce risk across your enterprise as effectively and efficiently as possible. To do so, you need comprehensive visibility into your attack surface so you can prioritize your exposure management efforts.
In this report, Gartner outlines the benefits of continuous threat exposure management (CTEM) programs, including recommendations on what your organization can do to improve your security posture.
Download the 2022 Gartner Exposure Management Report to learn more about:
- What a CTEM program entails
- Five stages of continuous exposure management
- CTEM implementation recommendations
Exposure Management Insights
Tenable Cyber Exposure Study: Defending Against Ransomware
Threat actors are banking on the likelihood your organization hasn’t taken necessary steps to remediate common and known software vulnerabilities. And, they anticipate being able to use those security weaknesses to infiltrate your systems, often with malicious intent to infect your assets with ransomware.
Since the pandemic, we’re seeing an uptick in ransomware trends, and many ransomware infections originate in a place security teams often overlook—your Active Directory (AD). Active Directory often has a lot of weaknesses that, if exploited, can enable attackers to easily escalate privileges. If your organization also has poor cyber hygiene, there’s a pretty good chance these attackers will be able to successfully gain a foothold within your attack surface and spread ransomware from there.
So, what can you do? Explore this Cyber Exposure study from Tenable to learn more about:
- Common attack vectors and exploits
- How to use Predictive Prioritization to remediate weaknesses that matter most to your organization
- How Tenable One can help you identify Active Directory exposures
From Risk-Based Vulnerability Management to Exposure Management
TAs your attack surface grows, attackers are aggressively seeking out any potential security weaknesses you may have overlooked. Because of that, it’s imperative that you have a mature vulnerability management program that can keep up—a program that goes beyond traditional vulnerability management and evolves into a more effective exposure management strategy.
If you haven’t done so already, there are a few key steps you can take to move your organization from risk-based vulnerability management into an exposure management program that helps improve your organization’s cyber hygiene, even across a complex and rapidly changing attack surface.
Take a closer look at this infographic to learn more about the benefits of employing an exposure management platform that enables your organization to have comprehensive visibility into all of your assets and security weaknesses, enables effective prediction and prioritization capabilities, and helps you better communicate your organization’s cyber risk.
3 Real-World Challenges Facing Cybersecurity Organizations: How an Exposure Management Platform Can Help
Your modern attack surface is complex, which is why it may have never been more critical now to evolve your risk-based vulnerability management program into a strategy focused on the more comprehensive picture—exposure management.
The reality is your security teams may struggle with staying on top of all the vulnerability and other security information they get about your attack surface. That makes it incredibly difficult to prioritize the security issues that matter most to your organization, and even harder to shift away from a reactive security approach to a more proactive one.
In this white paper, learn more about how an exposure management platform can help your teams get comprehensive visibility into your attack surface so they can better allocate their time and resources to taking the most effective actions that reduce your organization’s cyber risk.
Read more to explore:
- Real world challenges cybersecurity teams face today
- What you need to build an exposure management program
- Benefits of exposure management
- What to look for in an exposure management solution
Tenable Community: Your Go-To Resource for Exposure Management
Many organizations are just now moving away from sole-focus on risk-based vulnerability management and taking the steps to evolve into a more effective exposure management strategy. If you have questions about exposure management, join Tenable Community to connect with others who have similar interests in learning more about exposure management or how to mature existing programs.
Here are some sample conversations happening now:
Enabling Attack Path Analysis in Tenable One with Nessus
Attack path analysis is a major facet of transitioning from vulnerability management to exposure management and predictive risk-based exposure analysis. Tenable enables this by leveraging foundational knowledge of customers’ environments in Nessus.Read More
Tenable Cyber Watch: What Do Our Experts Predict for 2023?
Banish the post-holiday blues with news you can use: this episode of Tenable Cyber Watch takes a look at four cybersecurity trends to prepare for in 2023. Learn why ransomware extortion, OT security, SaaS worries and protecting the cloud are top of mind for our experts.Read More
Top 20 CVEs Exploited by People's Republic of China State-Sponsored Actors
CISA, the NSA and FBI issue a joint advisory detailing the top 20 vulnerabilities exploited by state-sponsored threat actors linked to the People’s Republic of China. These vulnerabilities have been used to target U.S. and allied networks, including software and hardware companies.Read More
Frequently Asked Questions about Risk-Based Vulnerability Management
Are you new to exposure management? Do you have questions about exposure management but not sure where to start? This FAQ is a great place to begin.
What is exposure management?
What does exposure management do?
How can exposure management mature my cybersecurity program?
Why do I need exposure management?
What are the key roles in an exposure management program?
How can I get started with exposure management?
- Know the security of all of your assets and identify gaps.
- Look at your entire attack surface from an attacker’s perspective.
- Prioritize remediation plans based on actual risk to your organization.
- Measure your remediation processes and employ continuous improvement.
- Effectively communicate and take action.
What are some benefits of exposure management?
- It gives you comprehensive visibility into your attack surface.
- You move from reactive security to being able to anticipate cyberattack consequences.
- You can contextualize security data to help prioritize remediation actions.
- It enables more effective communication throughout your organization, all the way up to the C-suite and board.
What are some things I can do to get ahead of my cyber risk?
How does exposure management help guide better business decisions?
How can I proactively reduce cyber exposure?
What should I look for in an exposure management platform?
- Makes it simple to see all of your assets, everywhere, all in one platform.
- Helps you make sense of security data, anticipate threats and prioritize remediation.
- Helps you effectively communicate cyber risk so you can make better security and business decisions.
What can I learn from exposure management?
- How secure are we?
- What should we prioritize?
- How are we reducing exposure over time?
- How do we compare to our peers?
Can exposure management disrupt attack paths?
Why is asset inventory important for exposure management?
How to Build an Exposure Management Program
While taking a risk-based approach can help your organizations mature a traditional vulnerability management program, the real question today is—is that enough? The answer is not likely. Instead, an exposure management program can help you take your cybersecurity program from one that’s reactive and bogged down in incident response to one that’s proactive and gives your team comprehensive insight into your entire attack surface so you can keep up with the constantly changing threat landscape and what that means for your organization’s unique and specific needs.
By adopting these five recommendations, your organization can better understand all of your cyber exposures so you can take effective actions to reduce them:
Assess your current technologies.
Ask: Do our technologies work together and give us comprehensive insight into all of our exposures? Or, are they still siloed?
Understand visibility into your attack surface.
Ask: What can we see? What do we need to see?
Ask: What should we do first? How can our remediation strategies be more predictive? Are we using threat intelligence? Can we analyze all attack paths for our most critical assets?
Measure remediation processes.
Ask: How well are we fixing exposures we find now? What can we do to make this more effective? What do our efforts look like compared to industry peers?
Communicate and take action.
Ask: How secure are we? Can we communicate our security posture effectively to executives, key stakeholders, and others? How do we utilize data to make more effective business decisions?
Which Exposure Management Platform is Right for Your Organization?
Finding a trusted and effective cybersecurity solution has long been frustrating and time-consuming. And, oftentimes, even after you painstakingly evaluate and implement a solution, getting everyone to use it and realize full benefits can be even more challenging. That’s because these solutions have traditionally been hard to use or they provide so much data your teams don’t know what to do with it.
Selecting an exposure management solution and getting your team on board to use it doesn’t have to be such a headache. Here are three key features to look for that may help simplify team buy-in and adoption:
The solution makes it simple to see all of your assets, everywhere, in one platform.
Yes, both on-prem and in the cloud. And, the solution should be more than just a way to inventory your assets. An effective exposure management solution should also identify asset-related vulnerabilities, misconfigurations and other security issues and enable continuous monitoring so you always know what you have and where you may have security risks. Seek a solution that gives you a unified view of your modern attack surface so you can eliminate blind spots and know what you need to do to effectively manage your cyber risk.
The solution helps you make sense of data , anticipate threats and prioritize remediation.
Look for an exposure management system that will help you use threat intelligence and other important data to anticipate consequences of a cyberattack—as it directly applies to your organization. Seek a solution that will identify relationships across your attack surface between assets, exposures, privileges and threats, and then help you prioritize cyber risk remediation. Your solution should also be able to continuously identify attack paths that pose the greatest risk of exploitation, even as your attack surface rapidly changes and expands. These features will make it easier for your teams to proactively reduce risk with the least amount of effort to prevent attacks.
The solution should help you effectively communicate cyber risk so you can make better security and business decisions.
Look for an exposure management solution that provides a centralized and business-aligned view of your cyber risk, along with clear KPIs to help measure progress over time. The solution should also offer insight that goes beyond a broad overview and enables you to drill down into specifics from a department or operational unit level. Also, look for a solution that offers benchmarking capabilities so you can understand how well your program performs in relation to industry peers.
Exposure Management Benefits
Exposure management is all about moving away from reactive security to developing a more proactive strategy that helps decrease your organization’s cyber exposure. By adopting an exposure management platform, your organizations will be better prepared to anticipate likely attacks while proactive reducing risk.
Here are some benefits of adopting an exposure management strategy:
Get comprehensive visibility
With a unified view of your attack surface, you can quickly identify all of your assets, everywhere, discover related security issues, and reduce time and effort you need to reduce cyber risk.
Anticipate cyberattack consequences
An exposure management platform can help you better understand relationships between your assets, exposures, privileges and threats across your entire attack surface—on-prem and in the cloud.
By continually identifying and focusing on your exploitable vulnerabilities, and attack and breach pathways, you can improve your risk prioritization abilities for better remediation insight, so you can more effectively reduce risk and prevent attacks.
More effective communication
An exposure management program can help give you a business-aligned view of your cyber exposures so you can more effectively communicate with your key stakeholders in a way that aligns with your organization’s goals and objectives.
See Tenable One in Action
Tenable One combines risk-based vulnerability management, web application security, cloud security and identity security into a single exposure management platform. It gives you a unified view of your entire attack surface so you can proactively address and manage cyber risk for all of your assets, everywhere.
Exposure Management Blog Bytes
Full IT Visibility Requires Business Risk Context
If you want to prevent attackers from being able to move laterally within your network and escalate privileges, then you should include Active Directory security into your risk-based approach to cybersecurity. If an attacker successfully gets access into your Active Directory, they’re likely to seek out high-level privileges so they can get access to more information and move deeper into your systems, creating backdoor access that is often unnoticed. Tenable.ad, however, shines a light on these hidden pathways, giving your organization opportunities to stop attacks before they happen including insight into new admin account creation, permission changes, new trust relationships, and more.
Exposure Management: Reducing Risk in the Modern Attack Surface
Many security teams are stuck being reactive and often that’s because their programs are siloed and they have so many tools generating so much data they don’t know what to do with it or what to focus on first. This blog explores how exposure management can give you the visibility you need to more effectively anticipate threats, prioritize remediation and reduce risk.
Tenable One Exposure Management Platform: Unlocking the Power of Data
With Tenable One, your organization can improve your preventive cybersecurity strategies to reduce risk more effectively. How? The platform provides a holistic view into your entire attack surface. In this blog, learn more about how Tenable One can be the foundational technology your organization needs to build a mature exposure management program.
Exposure Management On Demand
How Exposure Management Helps You Gain Visibility, Prevent Attacks, and Communicate Risk
Did you know you can use cyber risk intelligence to drive better business outcomes for your organization? That begins with full visibility into all of your assets and related security weaknesses. But you also need predictive threat context and objective metrics to effectively prevent cyberattacks and communicate your cyber risk.
In this webinar, learn more about:
- How security teams can drive cross-functional engagement and security effectiveness
- Why you need prioritization capabilities to conquer the “too-much-data” challenge
- How to get complete visibility of your entire attacks surface and why that matters
Exposure Management for the Modern Attack Surface
An exposure management platform like Tenable One can help your organization convert asset, vulnerability and threat data into insight you can actually use to make better security and business decisions. Exposure management can help you understand and act upon cyber exposures for your entire attack surface.
In this webinar, learn more about:
- How risk-based vulnerability management and exposure management are different
- Going beyond CVEs for exposure management
- Anticipating threats and prioritizing effects to prevent attacks and improve decision making
Identify and Communicate What's Most at Risk in Your Environment and Vital to Fix First
While the concept of exposure management may be new for your organization, the best practices behind it should not. Exposure management takes risk-based vulnerability management to the next level by ensuring you have insight you need into all of your assets and their related vulnerabilities and context to know what to do about them.
In this webinar, learn more about:
- How to evolve from risk-based vulnerability management to exposure management
- How siloed vulnerability and security data clouds your attack surface visibility
- What context is needed to effectively prioritize security issues and communicate across teams
Proactively Identify and Address Your Cyber Risk
Many cybersecurity teams struggle with preventing cyberattacks. That’s because they’re often drowning under vulnerability data and don’t have much-needed insight into their attack surface. That means they often don’t know what needs their attention first and how to fix related security issues that may have the greatest potential impact on their organization.
The most effective modern security teams will need to evolve from a reactive, risk-based vulnerability management approach to a proactive exposure management strategy. And, that begins with breaking down the silos that have prevented security teams from getting the comprehensive attack surface insight they need to get ahead of cyberattacks.
Know Your Attack Surface
Effective, proactive cybersecurity depends on attack surface insight. An exposure management can give you a unified view of all of your assets, everywhere, so you can identify related vulnerabilities, misconfigurations, and other security issues—on-prem and in the cloud. This information is an important part of understanding where you have exposures so you can prioritize and plan what to do about them.
Understand Your Exposure
It’s important to understand your exposure so you can make actionable decisions on what you need to do to address them. Exposure management can help measure your current security posture and evaluate how well your teams are doing at finding critical flaws and how quickly they can remediate issues that reduce the greatest amount of risk for your organization. By quantifying your exposure, you should be able to answer questions such as, “How secure are we?” and “Where are we with our prevention and mitigation efforts?”.
Visualize Attack Paths
Think like an attacker. By visualizing paths attackers may take, you can proactively focus efforts on eliminating these potential paths, build stronger security defenses and shut down attacks before threat actors move deeper into your systems and network.
Exposure management gives you a business-aligned view of your organization’s cyber risk. For example, you can develop KPIs that measure how well your program performs internally over time, as well as benchmark program maturity against industry peers. This is important because it can help you align your security program and your organization’s business goals, and improve communication with your executives and key stakeholders.