What is Threat Hunting and Why Does it Matter for Enterprise Cybersecurity?

Author: 
 Updated: 
July 23, 2020
 / 4 minutes

Cyber threats and attacks continuously evolve. Hackers develop new and more sophisticated strategies to breach security systems, and companies large and small have a lot to lose from these attacks. They can cost a lot of money and productivity and erode a business’s reputation over time. With this landscape of threats, it’s no longer enough to find and respond to known malware threats. Business owners need to take proactive action and implement systems that use active and aggressive threat hunting tactics.

Evolving Threats to Companies of All Sizes

Cybersecurity immediately became a problem when businesses started to go online. As technologies advanced and evolved, becoming more complex, so have the security threats from hackers. Massive cyberattacks now occur every day, and they impact small, medium, and large businesses and non-profit and government organizations.

One of the most significant issues in cybersecurity today is ransomware. Hackers find a way in and encrypt and lockdown files or entire networks. They then demand a ransom to return access. Hackers can halt production and request large sums of money and hold both company and consumer data over their victims’ heads.

As more companies report these threats, a shocking picture has emerged. From 2018 to 2019, the attacks increased by 41 percent. The average ransom payment jumped to nearly $200,000 by the end of last year.

Coinciding with this frightening increase in ransomware attacks is the COVID-19 pandemic. The Department of Homeland Security recently reported that threats and attacks continue to rise. Hackers now take advantage of people working from home, and they use COVID-themed content to lure in unsuspecting users. Their tactics include:

  • Phishing using COVID-19 as a lure
  • Distributing malware using bait related to coronavirus-related
  • Registering domain names using pandemic-related wording
  • Sending out attacks against new teleworking infrastructure

Understanding Enterprise Cybersecurity

Threats and incoming attacks target vulnerable points and cost businesses money, and ultimately customers and their reputation. Companies of all sizes need to take decisive action to protect themselves from these risks. One major issue is that companies have multiple endpoints that hackers can target. Computers, laptops, and mobile devices, not to mention the servers, represent vulnerable points through which an attack can come. Controlling so many endpoints requires coordination and can quickly go wrong if not properly managed.

Unfortunately, cyberattacks don’t just come from the outside. You also have to monitor your employees to ensure they don’t exhibit any malicious behaviors.

While most companies have some form of cybersecurity, many use inadequate software or don’t update their systems regularly. While you may think your defenses suffice, hackers know how to take advantage of out-of-date security systems and protocols. For example, antivirus software no longer provides comprehensive security. It protects one device and only manages known risks. It can’t predict what might come next.

Threat Hunting and Incident Response

A better, more thorough approach to enterprise security is investing in an endpoint system that includes threat hunting and incident response. Enterprise threat hunting and incident response systems include proactive protection rather than just reactive responses that you get with antivirus software.

Threat hunting is aggressive in that it assumes attackers are already in your network. Hackers are often present long before you realize it, putting together a sinister attack. Threat hunting systems find covert indicators of compromise, the subtle signs you’ve been breached, and mitigate them before the worst happens.

Some benefits of using an endpoint security platform with threat hunting and incident response include:

  • Full Visibility for All Devices– These systems cover all devices in your network, everything employees use that have the potential to leave the company vulnerable to attack.
  • Cloud-based and Scalable– An endpoint security platform in the cloud easily scales to serve small businesses, major corporations, and everything in between.
  • Immediate– The incident response to detection of threat is urgent, so you don’t have to worry about damage occurring while you learn about the problem.
  • Easy to Monitor and Use– With this form of cybersecurity, IT professionals can monitor an entire network and all endpoints from a single device. Furthermore, it takes mountains of data and turns them into information your IT department can monitor in real-time.

Hunt the Threats Now, Not Later

The immediacy and the intelligence of a threat hunting system for cybersecurity provide the most sophisticated response to malicious attacks. Companies can no longer rely on antivirus software or cobbled systems pieced together. Your IT team needs a better tool to keep your business safe.

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