Broadgate’s ASSURITY: Calculate your security exposure

Posted on : 30-07-2015 | By : admin | In : Cyber Security, Innovation

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Broadgate are pleased to announce the launch of our security assessment product, ASSURITY.

Over the years we’ve helped our clients address the increasing security challenges and protect their digital assets. Our experience during this time was that there is a need for a more business focused approach, so we developed our own assessment methodology, which we have now officially launched as a product.

So how can ASSURITY help?

Like it or not, dealing with the threat of data breaches is part of modern business. Not only that, it is a board level agenda item now with corporate executives being held accountable. Currently, European law makers are engaged in the lengthy process of approving the new European General Data Protection Regulation. There are still variations to be agreed upon, but when it comes to potential fines to be imposed for data breaches the upper end stands at €100 million or 5% of company revenue.

It also states that;

 “if feasible” companies should report a data breach within 24 hours of detection….and “where a data breach has occurred, the organization has to notify all those affected unless it can prove that data is unreadable by anyone not authorized to access it”

Against this backdrop, it becomes even more important that executives really understand their current risk exposure and can quantify the impact and likelihood of an event.

The ASSURITY product addresses three key challenges facing us today;

1) Understanding your business critical assets

2) Calculating your risk exposure

3) Prioritising areas requiring focus and investment

The product is differentiated against other offerings through not only the comprehensive inputs and modelling, but also by providing quantitative analysis in the form of a Cyber Value at Risk.

 

ASSURITY is a three step process, as outlined below;

Assurity assessment methodology

The ASSURITY product leads organisations through a 3 step process;

Step 01

We profile the organisation from many different data points. This is a critical part of the process as it allows for a more meaningful assessment of the actual risk. C’Level executives can use the product to inform their change programme and investment decisions. It is an iterative approach during which the relative weightings for each criteria are reviewed and discussed with the client to understand carefully the business risk appetite.

Step 02

The assessment is conducted by ingesting a number of different sources from documented artefacts, processes, data and technology into the Assurity product. From this we can assess the current maturity level, a quantified risk level, the potential impact to an organisation of a data breach or security event and also the likelihood of it occurring.

Step 03

The results of the assessment are presented in a form which clearly shows the focus areas for investment, change or where in the organisation is protected at the appropriate level. We map the results to the GCHQ 10 Steps for security and translate into language which allows C’Level executives to make informed decisions.

What are the benefits of ASSURITY?

1) Information security assurance – Demonstrating to your clients, suppliers, regulators, shareholders and insurers

2) Optimising security budgets – Avoiding unnecessary investments typically results in a 30% reduction in redundant operational security expenditure, support and maintenance

3) Qualified cyber value at risk – Financial value of corporate assets at risk is defined for input into broader business risk modelling

4) Improved compliance – Security health check defines current information security level

 

In the ASSURITY report, we  focus on four main areas;

 

Cyber At Risk Score

The Cyber At Risk Score takes a number of internal and external feeds to create a value from which organisations can have a more informed discussion regarding the likelihood of a security breach. We use this across the product to help quantify the impacts against the profile of the organisation.

Gap Analysts against Target Maturity

During the profiling stage we determine the appropriate maturity benchmark for the organisation.  This can be based on the internal risk appetite, industry average or other determining factors, and is used to identify shortfalls, strengths and focus attention and investments.

Maturity Assessment Heatmap

Here we plot the scores from 10 assessment areas against the Likelihood and Impact of an event. Importantly, we also assign a quantified value at risk which we have determined through the profiling exercise and the current maturity level. This allows C’Level executives to target and prioritise the investment areas.

Strategic Roadmap

The output from the ASSURITY product also forms the basis for the required change programme. We split the initiatives into Quick Wins which have the most immediate impact or target the most vulnerable areas. We also provide the long term remediation plan and ongoing continuous improvement projects to meet the required target baseline.

 

The ASSURITY product differentiates from other methodologies by being the most complete and accurate assessment that organisations can undertake to really understand their security risk exposure.

If you would like to find out more about the product and to arrange a demo, please contact jo.rose@broadgateconsultants.com or call +44(0)203 326 8000 to speak to one of our security consultants.

 

ASSURITY: Cyber Value at Risk calculations

Posted on : 30-07-2015 | By : richard.gale | In : Cyber Security, Innovation

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If the assumption that cyber attacks are inevitable is true then what can you do? An approach is to pour unlimited amounts of money into the blackhole of IT security. Another, more sensible, approach to take would be risk based, predicting the likelihood, the form and the cost of an attack against the cost of avoidance or mitigation.

Our ASSURITY Information Risk Assessment calculates the Cyber Value at Risk (CVaR) based on a number of criteria including industry, size, profile, interface, level of regulation and a number of other factors. What it provides is hard facts and costs that company directors demand to ensure they are obtaining value from their information security investments and that it is directed to right places.

Building a credible method of estimating and quantifying risk is essential to the process of risk management. The very public breaches at Sony, Target & Ashley Madison mask the multitude that do not make the press. In the UK there is little incentive to highlight a breach but new legislation will change that for organisations in the next year. So given that cyber attacks are “inevitable” then how can the economic impact be calculated for a particular organisation?

The World Economic Forum recently released its report “Partnering for Cyber Resilience; Towards the Quantification of Cyber Threats,” which calls for the application of VaR modelling techniques to cyber security. The report describes the characteristics a good cyber-oriented economic risk model should have, but it doesn’t specify any particular model. Here, we consider the concept of “value at risk,” what it means, how it can be applied to the cyber, and describe how a CVaR model is implemented in our ASSURITY product.

At Broadgate we have carried out a significant number of security assessments so can draw on the data but we can supplement it with simulated information based on a set of assumptions and factors related to an organisation. We utilise that knowledge from the financial markets to build out Cyber VaR.

  • Assets – these are the network infrastructure of an organisation
  • Values – these are the loss potential of service disruption, intellectual property, compliance failures etc located in the assets
  • Market changes – increase and decrease in the incidence of attack and its effectiveness

Using the data and historic information the CVaR can be calculated with growing certainty and so the risks/costs of an attack can be computed with confidence.  The challenges are modelling the network, value and market changes!

So why does CVaR matter? Cyber Security like most control mechanisms comes down to risk management. Risk management needs real information and figures in order to be useful to a business. If it does not then it is just guesswork so could end up with focus on the wrong areas resulting in over spending and gaps in defences.

Different organisations, sectors and organisational profiles have differing risk profiles and exposures. Companies also have different risk appetites (which change at different stages of their development). So understanding YOUR Cyber Value at Risk is a significant tool to helping understand the risks to your organisation, the potential losses and how to focus your cyber investment. Broadgate’s ASSURITY product can help articulate the risks, costs and best path to resolution.

The ASSURITY product differentiates from other methodologies by being the most complete and accurate assessment that organisations can undertake to really understand their security risk exposure.

If you would like to find out more about the product and to arrange a demo, please contact jo.rose@broadgateconsultants.com or call +44(0)203 326 8000 to speak to one of our security consultants.

 

Broadgate Predicts 2013 – Preview

Posted on : 29-01-2013 | By : john.vincent | In : Innovation

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Last month we published our 2013 Technology Predictions and asked our readers to give us their view through a short survey. We have had a great response…so much so that we are keeping in open for 2 more weeks.

However, we thought we would share a few of the findings so far, prior to us producing the final report.

Current Ranking

As we stand, the predictions that generated the most agreement are;

  1. Infrastructure Services Continue to Commoditise
  2. Samsung/Android gain more ground over Apple
  3. Data Centre/Hosting providers continue to grow

Some interesting commentary against these;

Many companies have come to terms with the security/regulatory issues concerning commoditisation and cloud services, although still chose to build in-house for now. It will take some significant time to see IaaS address the legacy infrastructure burden.

On the Apple debate, respondents agreed enough to place in 2nd place but differed a lot in terms of how this will develop…there is a feeling that Apple are struggling to continue to innovate ahead of the market and consumers are wiser now, together with a cost pressure that, if it is relieved, will cause users to stay with them.

Regarding Data Centres, the importance of cloud and managed services continues to drive expansion. Within heavily regulated industries such as Financial Services there continues to be a desire to Build vs Buy, but respondents questioned for how long. Having your own DC is not a competitive advantage.

At the other end of the scale, the prediction that respondents disagreed most with was;

  • Instant Returns on Investment required (followed closely by)
  • More Rationalisation of IT Organisations

Again, a pick of some of the additional comments;

Whilst there still exists demand for long term and large corporate technology initiatives, the stance is starting to change somewhat towards more agile, focused investments. Unfortunately, legacy issues and organisational culture continue to block progress.

Whilst the market conditions and technology evolution is facilitating a reduction in workforce, respondents cited other equal forces in areas such as risk and control, plus offshore operations delivering less value than expected, working to counteract this.

Please continue to send us your thoughts before we close!

Interestingly the largest number of No Comments (40%) came against the prediction that “Crowd-funding services continue to gain market share”…maybe an article for February.