Achieving the Value of Threat Intelligence

According to Andrew Komarov, CIO of InfoArmor, Inc. Today’s cyber landscape is more sophisticated than ever before. To navigate it safely and ensure your business and customers are properly protected, you need to understand what type of threats are out there and what risks they pose to you. This is where threat intelligence comes into play. Despite the millions of attacks that happen each day, not all threats are created equal. But it is this overwhelming number of attacks that bad actors count on to cause confusion and paranoia. Putting this into perspective, for its 2016 Data Breach Investigations Report, Verizon used a dataset of 64,199 security incidents and 2,260 data breaches.

Determining which threats are relevant and aligning resources to focus on those attack vectors is where the real value in threat intelligence takes shape. To get the most out of threat intelligence, organizations must be able to customize and shape the information they collect and analyze, and compare that against their unique environment. Relying on generic data feeds will add confusion to your protection efforts and therefore obfuscate what is most important. Many organizations are challenged by sifting through the enormous amount of available data to find what is pertinent to them, which creates a huge burden for already constrained IT security resources.

Data breaches have gained widespread attention as businesses of all sizes become increasingly reliant on digital data, cloud computing, and workforce mobility. With sensitive business data stored on local machines, on enterprise databases and on cloud servers, breaching a company’s data has become as simple as gaining access to restricted networks.

Here is a list of some of the more memorable breaches over the last 10 years:

• TK/TJ Maxx: 94 million records compromised in 2007
• Sony PlayStation Network: 77 million records compromised in 2010
• Sony Online Entertainment: 24.6 million records compromised in 2011
• Evernote: 50 million records compromised in 2013
• Living Social: 50 million records compromised in 2013
• Target: 70 million records compromised in 2013
• eBay: 145 million records compromised in 2014
• Home Depot: 56 million records compromised in 2014
• JP Morgan Chase: 76 million records compromised in 2014
• Anthem: 80 million records compromised in 2015
• OPM: 21 million records compromised in 2015
• IRS: 700,000 records compromised in 2016
• Email Service Providers: 270 million records compromised in 2016
• Banner Healthcare: 3.7 million records compromised in 2016

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