Zero-Day Attack Prevention: Fix The Vulnerabilities In Your System Before It Gets Too Late!
Understanding Zero-Day Attacks
A Zero-day attack is a cyber-attack whose main objective is to target a “zero-day” software vulnerability that is unknown to the user or the developer. These vulnerabilities are termed as “zero-day” (also maintained by ‘CVE’ list) because developers have zero days to fix it or to come up with a patch. Cyber adversaries exploit such vulnerabilities easily because no security measures, firewalls, or defenses exist at the moment of discovery to counter the new threats and protect the system. A few famous zero-day attack examples are Stuxnet, Windows zero-day attacks, Sony zero-day attacks, and Operation Aurora. One of the most recent zero-day attacks in 2019 was CVE-2019-1132. These attacks call for the urgent need for improved zero-day attack prevention methods and solutions.
Effective Zero-Day Attack Prevention Techniques
Zero-day exploits are initially unknown, and so there are usually no security measures or patches available to counter them. Organizations can take some protective control measures against these unknown vulnerabilities, such as:
Discovering an attack is crucial. So how are zero day attacks discovered? Software vendors provide vulnerability scanning solutions in which simulated attacks are carried out on the software code. These solutions conduct code reviews and search for new vulnerabilities that may have arisen after software updates or are still unknown.
Security Patch Update
Another measure to prevent zero-day exploits is to keep security patches up to date. A software vendor needs to test and update patches as soon as a new vulnerability is discovered. New vulnerabilities also appear with the latest updates, although old ones are patched and hence must be tested before deployed into the production environment. Regularly updating your software can keep you protected from many known and unknown cyber-risks.
WAF And RASP
The WAF (Web Application Firewall) is one of the most competent methods for achieving zero-day protection as its deployment on the network edges helps in reviewing incoming traffic and filtering out malicious data packets that might exploit system security vulnerabilities.
RASP (Runtime Application Self Protection) is one of the latest advancements in the field of zero-day attack prevention. In it, an application works under the supervision of agents that examine the payload requests taking into consideration the application code at runtime. This method results in the accurate determination of whether a particular request is normal or malicious so that the software can counter the threat accordingly.
Final Words On Zero-Day Attack Prevention
A zero-day attack is one of the most relentless threats to organizational information security. A cyberattack such as Windows zero-day attacks can compromise several million computers at once. By implementing the control measures explained above, and employing zero-day attack prevention techniques such as penetration testing, regular software updates, and using WAF and RASP, one can mitigate the risks from zero-day exploits to a great extent.
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