Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Top 20 Critical Security Controls

Twenty Critical Security Controls for Effective Cyber Defense

The Twenty Critical Security Controls have already begun to transform security in government agencies and other large enterprises by focusing their spending on the key controls that block known attacks and find the ones that get through.

With the change in FISMA reporting implemented on June 1, the 20 Critical Controls become the centerpiece of effective security programs across government These controls allow those responsible for compliance and those responsible for security to agree, for the first time, on what needs to be done to make systems safer. No development in security is having a more profound and far reaching impact.

These Top 20 Controls were agreed upon by a powerful consortium brought together by John Gilligan (previously CIO of the US Department of Energy and the US Air Force) under the auspices of the Center for Strategic and International Studies. Members of the Consortium include NSA, US Cert, DoD JTF-GNO, the Department of Energy Nuclear Laboratories, Department of State, DoD Cyber Crime Center plus the top commercial forensics experts and pen testers that serve the banking and critical infrastructure communities.

The automation of these Top 20 Controls will radically lower the cost of security while improving its effectiveness. The US State Department, under CISO John Streufert, has already demonstrated more than 94% reduction in “measured” security risk through the rigorous automation and measurement of the Top 20 Controls.

  1. Inventory of Authorized and Unauthorized DevicesCritical Control
  2. Inventory of Authorized and Unauthorized SoftwareCritical Control
  3. Secure Configurations for Hardware and Software on Laptops, Workstations, and ServersCritical Control
  4. Continuous Vulnerability Assessment and RemediationCritical Control
  5. Malware DefensesCritical Control
  6. Application Software SecurityCritical Control
  7. Wireless Device ControlCritical Control
  8. Data Recovery CapabilityCritical Control
  9. Security Skills Assessment and Appropriate Training to Fill GapsCritical Control
  10. Secure Configurations for Network Devices such as Firewalls, Routers, and SwitchesCritical Control
  11. Limitation and Control of Network Ports, Protocols, and ServicesCritical Control
  12. Controlled Use of Administrative PrivilegesCritical Control
  13. Boundary DefenseCritical Control
  14. Maintenance, Monitoring, and Analysis of Security Audit LogsCritical Control
  15. Controlled Access Based on the Need to KnowCritical Control
  16. Account Monitoring and ControlCritical Control
  17. Data Loss PreventionCritical Control
  18. Incident Response CapabilityCritical Control
  19. Secure Network EngineeringCritical Control
  20. Penetration Tests and Red Team Exercises


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