A customer case study – SOX IT Compliance
We performed a Sarbanes-Oxley IT top down security assessment for a NASDAQ-traded advanced technology company. The objectives for the study were to evaluate the internal and external threats that impact the company’s information assets. Using the Business threat modeling (BTM) methodology, a practical threat analysis PTA threat model was constructed and a number of threat scenarios were analyzed. Data was collected using structured interviews and network surveillance (with a Fidelis XPS appliance). Assets were valuated by the CFO and the IT security operations and technologies were valuated by the CIO. The output of the study was a cost-effective, prioritized program of security controls.This program was presented and approved by the management board of the company- leading to an immediate cost savings of over $120,000/year in the information security budget.
The detailed threat model was provided to the client and is currently used to perform what-if analysis and track the data security implementation.
The bulk of the security budget is currently spent on sustaining network perimeter security and system availability. Not surprisingly, these countermeasures are not particularly effective in mitigating insider threats such as lost or stolen hardware and information leakage, which now dominate the company’s risk profile.
In corporate IT Security operations: The two major data security systems that were purchased in 2007, Imperva and Fidelis XPS Extrusion Prevention System have not yet been fully implemented and do not provide the expected benefit. To be specific, Imperva needs to be able to produce real-time alerts on violations based on logical combinations of OS user, DB application and DB user. Fidelis needs to be deployed in the subsidiaries. Monitoring from both systems needs to become a daily operational tool for the security officer.
In the Asia Pacific region: Loss of notebooks to the tune of 2-3 / quarter is a major vulnerability although content abuse of the corporate network is assessed as negligible due to cultural factors.
In general: Publicly facing FTP servers must be monitored carefully for violations of the company acceptable usage policy. In the course of the risk assessment, we discovered strategic plans and proprietary source codes that were stored on publicly accessible FTP servers.