Strategies to Develop a Zero-Trust Cyber Security Strategy


Enterprises with traditional cyber security tech stack and measures have multiple gaps in their security posture that a cybercriminal can leverage to infiltrate the business network and gain access to sensitive business data. Cybersecurity industry veterans are designing and enforcing a zero-trust cybersecurity strategy throughout their enterprise to develop resilient defenses against sophisticated threats with malicious intent.

Organizations around the world, irrespective of their business type, size, or industry, are embracing a digital-first approach to scale their businesses exponentially. Even if the digital transformation efforts have led to flourishing businesses, on the other side, it has exposed the IT infrastructure to various cyber threats and risks. Modernizing the IT infrastructure has given businesses the speed, agility, and flexibility to stay competitive in the current digital environment. However, it has added responsibilities to the SecOps teams to keep their organization secure from sophisticated threats. CISOs can consider enforcing zero-trust cybersecurity strategies to overcome the gaps in their security posture.

Here are a few strategies that the SecOps teams can consider while implementing zero-trust network security:

Also Read: Adopting a Zero-Trust Model for Secure Data Access and Management

Determine the attack surface area to protect

It is crucial for the CISOs and CSOs to define the attack surface area that they need to protect in order to keep the entire business network secure from various threats. The SecOps teams should have a complete roadmap of the entire attack surface areas that can be entry points for attackers to infiltrate the network. CISOs can implement a security perimeter around the entire business network to keep sensitive data and vulnerable assets as far away from the perimeter as possible. One significant challenge with the approach is that the IT infrastructure today is growing to be more extensive and complex. Moreover, increasing attack surface areas makes it more difficult for the SecOps teams to identify all the potential entry points. While adopting a zero-trust cybersecurity strategy, organizations should instead concentrate on defining assets or attack surface areas that need to be secured during an attack.

Deploy a zero-trust network architecture

There is no such thing as a standard zero-trust network that organizations can learn or adapt from.

CISOs need to customize their zero-trust cybersecurity strategy based on their workflows and interdependencies.

SecOps teams can implement micro-perimeter leveraging the security controls that the organization determines to govern the entire IT infrastructure. For instance, enterprises can implement a next-generation firewall to segment the entire network based on the total attack surface areas and develop a micro-perimeter around that segment to monitor the incoming traffic and enforce stringent access control policies on all layers. Such a model is called an Open Systems Interconnection (OSI) model that acts as a reference model for how applications interact in the entire business network. A traditional firewall is only capable of Securing physical, data link, network, and transport layers, while the next-generation firewall secures the session, presentation, and applications in the upper tech stack.

Also Read: Three Elements of a Successful Cybersecurity Strategy

Enforce zero-trust policies

After the SecOps teams successfully implement a zero-trust architecture; they need to design and deploy zero-trust security policies to secure attack surface area. CISOs can evaluate the access requirements based on which resources need access to which assets based on their job, what applications will be utilized, and what is the location of the asset to make necessary security changes accordingly. CISOs, while developing zero-trust security policies for each asset and their attack surface areas and deploying micro-perimeter, need to be as granular as possible to secure the IT infrastructure by allowing only known traffic to enter the network perimeter.

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