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Implement Risk-Based Vulnerability Management

Get off the patching merry-go-round and start mitigating risk!

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Without an effective vulnerability management program, organizations face:

  • Vulnerabilities going undetected and becoming exploited by attackers.
  • The list of vulnerabilities seems endless, and you don’t know where to start.
  • Your vulnerability tool reports the urgency of certain vulnerabilities to be high, but you know otherwise that they might not be as critical as what the tool is reporting.
  • You are being told that everything must be patched, however, you know that that is not possible for feasible. Patching can also break things.

Using Info-Tech’s methodology for vulnerability management, you will:

  • Develop a structured, consistent way to remediate vulnerabilities.
  • Understand the risk that certain vulnerability types pose to your organization, within the proper context of your business.
  • Gain insight around remediation methods that do not include patching, especially when patching is not possible or cannot be done in a timely fashion.
  • Develop a process that can withstand audit and makes good business sense.

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Onsite Workshops offer an easy way to accelerate your project. If you are unable to do the project yourself, and a Guided Implementation isn’t enough, we offer low-cost onsite delivery of our Project Workshops. We take you through every phase of your project and ensure that you have a road map in place to complete your project successfully.

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Module 1: Identify Vulnerability Sources

The Purpose

  • Establish a common understanding of vulnerability management, and define the roles, scope, and information sources of vulnerability detection.

Key Benefits Achieved

  • Attain visibility on all of the vulnerability information sources, and a common understanding of vulnerability management and its scope.

Activities: Outputs:
1.1 Define the scope & boundary of your organization’s security program.
  • Defined scope and boundaries of the IT security program
1.2 Assign responsibility for vulnerability identification and remediation.
  • Roles and responsibilities defined for member groups
1.3 Develop a monitoring and review process of third-party vulnerability sources.
  • Process for review of third-party vulnerability sources
1.4 Review incident management and vulnerability management
  • Alignment of vulnerability management program with existing incident management processes

Module 2: Triage and Prioritize

The Purpose

  • We will examine the elements that you will use to triage and analyze vulnerabilities, prioritizing using a risk-based approach and prepare for remediation options.

Key Benefits Achieved

  • A consistent, documented process for the evaluation of vulnerabilities in your environment.

Activities: Outputs:
2.1 Evaluate your identified vulnerabilities.
  • Adjusted workflow to reflect your current processes
2.2 Determine high-level business criticality.
  • List of business operations and their criticality and impact to the business
2.3 Determine your high-level data classifications.
  • Adjusted workflow to reflect your current processes
2.4 Document your defense-in-depth controls.
  • List of defense-in-depth controls
2.5 Build a classification scheme to consistently assess impact.
  • Vulnerability Management Risk Assessment tool formatted to your organization
2.6 Build a classification scheme to consistently assess likelihood.
  • Vulnerability Management Risk Assessment tool formatted to your organization

Module 3: Remediate Vulnerabilities

The Purpose

  • Identifying potential remediation options.
  • Developing criteria for each option in regard to when to use and when to avoid.
  • Establishing exception procedure for testing and remediation.
  • Documenting the implementation of remediation and verification.

Key Benefits Achieved

  • Identifying and selecting the remediation option to be used
  • Determining what to do when a patch or update is not available
  • Scheduling and executing the remediation activity
  • Planning continuous improvement

Activities: Outputs:
3.1 Develop risk and remediation action.
  • List of remediation options sorted into “when to use” and “when to avoid” lists

Module 4: Measure and Formalize

The Purpose

  • You will determine what ought to be measured to track the success of your vulnerability management program.
  • If you lack a scanning tool this phase will help you determine tool selection.
  • Lastly, penetration testing is a good next step to consider once you have your vulnerability management program well underway.

Key Benefits Achieved

  • Outline of metrics that you can then configure your vulnerability scanning tool to report on.
  • Development of an inaugural policy covering vulnerability management.
  • The provisions needed for you to create and deploy an RFP for a vulnerability management tool.
  • An understanding of penetration testing, and guidance on how to get started if there is interest to do so.

Activities: Outputs:
4.1 Measure your program with metrics, KPIs, and CSFs.
  • List of relevant metrics to track, and the KPIs, CSFs, and business goals for.
4.2 Update the vulnerability management policy.
  • Completed Vulnerability Management Policy
4.3 Create an RFP for vulnerability scanning tools.
  • Completed Request for Proposal (RFP) document that can be distributed to vendor proponents
4.4 Create an RFP for penetration tests.
  • Completed Request for Proposal (RFP) document that can be distributed to vendor proponents
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