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Constant change in the technology landscape has been mirrored by the steady evolution of information security. The current information system environment is increasingly complex, comprising storage, servers, LANs/WANs, workstations, Unified Communications, Intranet, and Internet connections.
Dell SonicWALL's CSSA (Certified SonicWALL Security Administrator) exam is an open book, online certification exam that certifies a student’s understanding of the SonicOS Unified Threat Management (UTM) operating system. The exam tests a student’s network security knowledge, and their ability to use the GUI menu structure for configuration of standard network security scenarios.
For a project manager (PM) who has served as a military officer on a battalion or higher staff, the parallels between the military decision-making process (MDMP), the orders production process, and project management doctrine prescribed by the Project Management Institute (PMI) are difficult to ignore. Both the MDMP and the processes outlined in A Guide to the Project Management Body of Knowledge—Fifth Edition (PMBOK® Guide) are iterative in nature, allow for the introduction of changes to the original plan, assign tasks and responsibilities, and involve the concept of managing the scope of the operation or project.
Global Knowledge instructor Doug Notini discusses the benefits of our FIREWALL 2.0 - Deploying Cisco ASA Firewall Solutions course.
While the last few years have brought about many great advances in IT and network technology security and risk management have a critical point. There is a host of new concerns the IT security manager must be concerned with, including social networking, mobile, cloud, and information sharing. This has unleashed a new wave of change and potential risk. Risk management is required to deal with these emerging technologies and should provide the rationale for all information security activities within the organization. You can think of risk management as the process of ensuring that the impact of threats and exploited vulnerabilities is within acceptable limits at an acceptable cost. Risk management requires the use of countermeasures. Countermeasures can include any process that serves to reduce threats or vulnerabilities.
This paper proposes a unifying model for project plans. A distinction will be made between the outputs of project planning and the project plan itself. The significance of this distinction is to allow projects of all types to be described at a high level, in a common language, regardless of the type of analysis used to develop the plan.
Course director Jim Thomas explains how our custom labs, which utilize external hosts, ISR routers, and DMZ, provide a real-world environment for students.
As mentioned earlier, one of the most useful pieces of guidance that ITIL provides relates to the categorization of suppliers. ITIL describes four categories of suppliers:
Enterprises, whether they are commercial, non-profit, or government entities, are operational organizations that operate through the execution of hundreds of processes. The quality of these processes affects every aspect of the enterprise and these processes are rarely static. Business Process Analysis (BPA) is the discipline of examining processes so that they may be changed to align with enterprise objectives.
Rather than looking back over the past year, organizations and individuals need to start assessing cybersecurity threats that lie ahead in the New Year. While there is always the chance for a new threat or risk to be unearthed this year, often the risks of the New Year are predicable from the trends of attacks from the previous year. However, other factors need to be considered as well, including new technologies, new software and applications, mobility, etc. Here are my predictions of the areas to watch for new security threats. When it comes to cybersecurity, we have a lot to look out for, take precautions against and be paranoid about.
Risk is something we deal with on a daily basis. Living in New Jersey and having the occasional storm, I’ve recently performed my own risk assessment determining the value of certain assets and activities and made a decision on what I was willing to spend to reduce risk to what I perceived as an acceptable level. My management of risk was a rather simple case. Sure, in my revised business continuity plan for my home, I’ll make sure that I have more D cell batteries, have my garage door adjusted so it opens manually again, more food I can heat on a stove and that doesn’t rely on refrigeration, and finally I’ll consider a whole house gas generator that uses natural gas, which has always been available to power critical systems like the sump pump in my basement. What if, however, I was a really large business? One with lots of components and interdependencies that require a tight integration in order to succeed? How and where can a large volume of information necessary to management, business continuity, and disaster recovery be correlated and communicated to those individuals who, because of their roles and responsibilities, need to make the critical decisions regarding the management of risk?
In a recent post, I gave an overall description of a service portfolio and the key components of a portfolio. Here, I will describe how a cloud services provider might implement an ITIL service portfolio. A cloud services provider will regularly have a set of services under development, a set of service in live operation, and a set of services that are retired.
ITIL describes a service portfolio as a collection of the overall set of services managed by a service provider. A service portfolio describes a service provider’s boundaries and promises across all of the customers and market spaces it serves. I like to think of a service portfolio as describing the past, present, and future collection of services offered by a service provider. The figure below shows a high-level view of a service portfolio.
We already covered the first three of the twelve advantages of Agile software development. These three advantages focus on team development and refining the process. Advantage #4: Motivated Development Team The positive relationship with a reasonable and satisfied customer is only one of the reasons why many developers prefer to work on Agile projects. The other main contributor is that they tend to value working in self directed teams (which the Agile methods require for success).
For several years, most news articles about a computer, network, or Internet-based compromise have mentioned the phrase "zero day exploit" or "zero day attack," but rarely do these articles define what this is. A zero day exploit is any attack that was previously unknown to the target or security experts in general. Many believe that the term refers to attacks that were just released into the wild or developed by hackers in the current calendar day. This is generally not the case. The "zero day" component of the term refers to the lack of prior knowledge about the attack, highlighting the idea that the victim has zero day's notice of an attack. The main feature of a zero day attack is that since it is an unknown attack, there are no specific defenses or filters for it. Thus, a wide number of targets are vulnerable to the exploit.
There is a reason why the Agile methods are becoming mainstream. They can work! Although every Agile practice is not necessarily appropriate for every organization, each practice has delivered real value to many organizations, and some Agile practices can be used by anyone! This four part series explores twelve ways in which the Agile methods are valuable. I’ll bet that you will find more than a few that could be valuable for you!
Hackers are everywhere, and they have a sophisticated array of tools for cracking your passwords. The primary purpose of this white paper is to help you understand that easy-to-remember passwords are no longer considered a secure form of authentication. You should consider any static password that you can remember as vulnerable. Even static passwords that are random are still vulnerable to some extent - It just takes much longer for a password cracking attack to be successful, and the likelihood of that success is inversely proportional to the length of the password. Here are some tips to help you create effective passwords, and how to keep your passwords safe.
Knowledge Management examines how we acquire, organize, manage, share, and utilize knowledge and information. The Internet gives us an overwhelming amount of information on a daily basis — and the volume of information available is growing rapidly! One of the biggest challenges for individuals and organizations involved in project management is to make the best use of this knowledge and information so they can operate more efficiently, improve decision making, and sustain a competitive advantage.
Lessons learned is a theory, or conclusion, based on evidence at a given time and describes what went wrong (as well as what went right) throughout the lifecycle of a project. Although it’s completed during the project closeout process, it should occur during the entire project lifecycle to ensure all information is captured and documented. Consequences of not having a project review of lessons learned are the increased likelihood of repeating actions that might have caused:
In spite of an organization's best efforts to prevent downtime and avoid compromises, failures will still happen from time to time. “There are only two types of companies: those that have been hacked, and those that will be. Even that is merging into one category: those that have been hacked and will be again,” (FBI Director Robert Mueller). So what is your organization doing about it? How do you plan for failures and security breaches?
Everyone has been involved in a learning program or project that has not delivered its intended impact. Across organizations, remarkably similar but preventable missteps are made in needs identification, learning strategies, program development and implementation. Instructor Tom Gram, Senior Director of Professional Services at Global Knowledge, will present six classic mistakes learning professionals make that reduce chances for success along with evidence-based practices to help prevent them.
IT departments have multiple opportunities and challenges as a result of the Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) invasion. The most common opportunity is to reinforce enterprise network security from both the inside and the outside. Supporting BYOD also offers more monitoring and tracking of activities that provide a more detailed view of network traffic flow. Alternatively, it will be a challenge for some IT departments to give up control over which devices may access their enterprise network. Another challenge will be to have the users doing configurations for network access, which adds human error to a crucial part of the process. The opportunities and challenges BYOD represents are real. Enterprises must make their network infrastructure BYOD ready to meet the onslaught.
During a recent ITIL foundation class, a student asked an interesting question. She wanted to know: “What is the difference between a project and a service?” To be honest, I haven’t spent much time thinking about this distinction. However, I think that those of us who practice ITIL consulting and training should have good answers to questions such as this. Here’s how I answered this question.
The term "life cycle" implies two things: that a process is perpetual and that the sequence of events is obligatory or uni-directional. There is no beginning or end to a life cycle and the sequence of events cannot change. A seed cannot go directly to being a mature plant nor revert back to the blossom stage.
In my last post I discussed aspects of problem management in the context of a real-life situation regarding the first vehicle I owned. In that scenario, and throughout this series of posts, I’ve demonstrated a real-life situation from a standpoint of the incident and problem management processes that ITIL describes.
Your business has been hacked, leaving you with a persistent bot; now what? In this hour-long webinar, security expert David Willson will discuss ways you can eliminate the threat in an act of self-defense or defense of property. As new laws are explored, old ones amended, and solutions sought, you'll take a look at thinking outside the box to give the good guys the advantage-or at least a fighting chance.
In this hour-long webinar, security expert and Global Knowledge instructor Phillip D. Shade will provide insight into the emerging network security science of network forensics analysis, a.k.a. security event analysis and reconstruction. Using case studies, you will examine the role of data retention in network forensics analysis, and you will learn about applying forensics analysis techniques to handle application-based attacks, VoIP call interception, and worms, bots, and viruses.
An attacker needs to destroy evidence of his presence and activities for several reasons like being able to maintain access and evade detection (and the resulting punishment). Erasing evidence of a compromise is a requirement for any attacker who wants to remain obscure and evade trace back. This usually starts with erasing the contaminated logins and any possible error messages that may have been generated from the attack process.
Once an attacker gains access to the target system, the attacker can choose to use both the system and its resources and further use the system as a launch pad to scan and exploit other systems, or he can keep a low profile and continue exploiting the system. Both these actions can damage the organization. For instance, the attacker can implement a sniffer to capture all network traffic, including telnet and ftp sessions with other systems.
Gaining access is the most important phase of an attack in terms of potential damage, although attackers don’t always have to gain access to the system to cause damage. For instance, denial-of-service attacks can either exhaust resources or stop services from running on the target system. Stopping a service can be carried out by killing processes, using a logic/time bomb, or even reconfiguring and crashing the system. Resources can be exhausted locally by filling up outgoing communication links.
Attackers use a method called scanning before they attack a network. Scanning can be considered a logical extension (and overlap) of active reconnaissance since the attacker uses details gathered during reconnaissance to identify specific vulnerabilities. Often attackers use automated tools such as network/host scanners and war dialers to locate systems and attempt to discover vulnerabilities.
Planning for a cyber disaster makes recovering from one much easier. Still, as important as disaster planning is, it's often overlooked or put off until it is too late. In this webinar, Global Knowledge instructor Debbie Dahlin discusses planning for the unexpected -- whether the unexpected means a simple power outage, a network security breach, or a major natural disaster. She'll discuss risk analysis and risk management techniques and explain the importance and process of creating a business continuity plan. Using a fictional company as an example, Debbie will walk you through the disaster planning process a security professional should use, and she will provide simple tricks to reduce your company's downtime before, during, and after a disaster.
In this webinar, the second of two based on our Cybersecurity Foundations course, you'll build on what you learned in the first of the series, Protecting Your Network with Authentication and Cryptography.
In this webinar, the first of two based on our Cybersecurity Foundations course, you will examine the following topics: verifying users and what they can access, ways a user can be validated to computer and network resources, how cryptography is used to protect data, symmetric and asymmetric encryption and hashes.
No matter which IT field you're working in, there are several skills that are useful for every IT professional to know. Here, seven experienced IT professionals working in the networking, programming, project management, and security fields, share what they believe a...
As any network administrator will tell you, the ASA Security appliance (as well as its forerunner, the PIX) are capable of generating massive amounts of log messages, especially when the firewall/security appliance is set to log messages at debug level to the syslog...
A feature common to IPSec Virtual Private Network implementations throughout the Cisco product line is Perfect Forward Secrecy (PFS). This optional additional component is now a default supplied configuration setting with the Adaptive Security Device Manager (ASDM) I...
Occasionally as I'm teaching a Cisco training class, I get an idea for a blog post and it happened again this week. The Securing Networks with ASA Fundamentals curriculum is mostly based on the Adaptive Security Device Manager (ASDM). While the class describes the us...
Private networks are under constant threat of attack, even when steps have been taken to "secure" them. The large volume of malicious codes, and their ability to evolve and adapt, requires security professionals and common computer/internet users alike to be mindful of their actions and constantly play defense. This white paper focuses on 10 common ways that malicious code can penetrate a network. Knowledge of these methods and the ability to recognize them are the first steps in preventing them from succeeding in harming your network.
The subject of this week’s post was actually prompted by a question from a former colleague. Soon after the PIX Firewall added support for IPSec Virtual Private Networks, a command was added to the command-line, sysopt connection permit-ipsec. This command was subse...
The flexibility, reduced cost, and mobility of cloud computing have made the concept a hot topic. Before implementing this method of computing, however, it is important to consider the security of the "cloud." In this white paper, you will learn some of the risks and benefits of cloud computing to be sure it is the right solution for you.
I recently was presented with the challenge of logging ALL of the pertinent connection, disconnection, and termination messages associated with the Cisco SSL AnyConnect client without overwhelming the syslog capture display with extraneous messages. This blog will br...
Project procurement activities are often managed by specialists. By this I mean that the procurement department takes over responsibility for purchasing and contract management from the project manager. As a result of this separation of responsibilities, the steps and stages of procurement are often poorly understood by PMs. In this and the next few blog submissions, I will attempt to shed light on procurement activities and relate these activities to the PMI PMBOK.
There are some common misconceptions on the part of some of my students as to how VPN sessions are established from either a remote location or remote user to the ASA firewall. In particular, a “gray area” seems to be when the attributes from the tunnel group are app...
ASA and PIX software version 7.0 introduced the configuration command nat-control which didn’t exist in previous versions of code. Although training course material for both the SNAF (Securing Networks with ASA Fundamentals) and SNAA (Securing Networks with ASA Advan...
No matter what book or manual you use to study for the CCNA examination, you will see various protocols and processes referencing an RFC. And, although frequently referenced, the RFCs are seldom actually included in the documentation. So, the logical question becomes...
The triple constraints model has been one of the main staples for teaching project management for as long as I can remember. The model is generally represented by a triangle with Scope on the horizontal leg, Time on the left leg, Cost or Resources on the right leg an...