Industry Trends

The Need for Fast and Accurate Threat Intelligence

By Jeannette Jarvis | October 17, 2018

For your customers, identifying and quickly securing against modern cyberthreats is paramount—especially as they adopt digital transformation strategies to better meet the needs of their consumers. Unfortunately, cybercriminals are also moving at an increasingly rapid pace by continually innovating and evolving to exploit new attack vectors.

However, given the current cybersecurity skills shortage impacting businesses across industries, the need for rapid threat identification and security implementation is often tempered by human-caused security errors and misconfigurations. In order to maintain an effective security posture that can adapt and respond to the evolving threat landscape at pace—without hindering digital transformation efforts—network professionals need faster and more accurate threat intelligence gathering. With this in mind, Fortinet’s threat intelligence services provides your customers with the type of information and analysis they need to secure their digital businesses against modern cyberthreats and facilitate success.

The Growing Need for Fast and Accurate Threat Intelligence

It should come as no surprise that the more threat insights your customers have, the more efficiently they can secure themselves against those threats. As our recent Global Threat Landscape Report illustrates, virtually no organization is immune to the evolving capabilities of modern cybercriminals, with 96% of firms experiencing at least one severe exploit.

In order to ensure an effective and responsive security posture, cybersecurity personnel need to understand the modern threats facing their organizations, while at the same time, automatically and accurately updating their security efforts to combat them. Given that today’s threat landscape consists of a multitude of complex attacks targeting organizations virtually anywhere across their distributed networks, the potential for serious impact affecting your customers grows daily. In today’s cyberthreat climate, it’s no longer a luxury to have threat analysis and reporting that moves at machine speeds—it’s a necessity.

As proof of the compounding threat environment your customers need to defend themselves against, the FortiGuard labs team has documented cybercriminals adopting a diverse array of complex attack capabilities spanning over 100,000 known exploits. This high number of exploits available to cybercriminals indicates three key trends your customers need to be aware of:

  1. With so many exploits out there, IT professionals relying on manual threat analysis, correlation, detection, and mitigation will be unable to account for the burgeoning number of potential vulnerabilities and patch devices fast enough to keep up.
  2. In addition to the vast library of exploits available to cybercriminals, they also continue to develop new technologies and attack strategies that allow them to combat, evade, or circumvent cybersecurity efforts. Those businesses and organizations unable to keep pace, either through manpower or budgetary constraints, are left vulnerable to an attack.
  3. Cybercriminals are also becoming increasingly selective about the exploits they leverage in an effort to bolster their chances of success and get more bang for their buck, often tailoring attacks to exploit specific vulnerabilities detected at a targeted victim.

For Fortinet partners, the threat intelligence services available to your customers enables them to secure themselves and their organizations against the evolving capabilities of cybercriminals, while further establishing your ability to play a valuable role in providing them with the most accurate and actionable threat reporting available.

Threats Facing Your Customers Today

In fact, our threat research for Q2 indicates that, unlike in previous quarters, no single breach, event, or major disruption dominated the threat landscape. Instead, we noticed a growing variety of unique disruptions, infections, malware variants, and heists. Most notably, we observed:

  • Cybercriminals are developing more agile malware variants: Cybercriminals are leveraging agile development processes in order to make their malware more difficult to both detect and address. As the new GandCrab v4.0 malware variant indicated, cybercriminals are quickly adopting a host of new improvements to make their malware more evasive and effective.
  • Botnet usage indicates cybercriminals are becoming more creative: We’ve noticed that in order to maximize the impact of their botnets, cybercriminals are loading their botnets with a range of malicious actions rather than the single threat payloads of the past. For example, the nation-state-backed VPNfilter attacks targeting SCADA/ICS environments is now capable of exfiltrating data from a compromised network while also being able to render devices inoperable using a range of pre-loaded exploits.
  • Exploit severity is increasing: The high number of unique exploit variants is also making it harder for your customers to maintain a consistent and adaptable security posture. More alarming, however, is that out of the 7,230 unique exploits we saw in Q2, 96 percent were severe—a growing issue we’ve aimed to address through extending the dynamic threat detection of our sandbox solution across a variety of devices and form factors, including cloud-based sandboxing services.

The Value of Fortinet Threat Services

As part of Fortinet’s ongoing commitment to provide businesses and organizations with the capabilities they need to combat modern cyberthreats, our threat intelligence services provide customers with the tools, resources, and actionable intelligence they need to keep up with the modern threat landscape. Leveraging data from more than three million sensors across the globe, our threat research experts at FortiGuard Labs constantly share the insights they gather with Fortinet partners and their customers, as well as through constant live updates to the Fortinet security portfolio.

Additionally, Fortinet provides partners with the opportunity to invest in our security rating feature and best practices guide, which help you address the modern security demands of customers struggling to persevere in today’s complex threat landscape. This resource, based on security industry best practices and standards, provides a growing set of effective and timely capabilities to our security fabric by continually assessing a customer’s Security Fabric for vulnerabilities, validating that configurations have been set up correctly, and most importantly, providing actionable intelligence against modern cyberthreats.

Final Thoughts

Today, cybercriminals continue to expand their exploit capabilities across the kill chain. In order to keep up with this drastic and rapidly-changing environment, your customers need the capability to understand the continually evolving threats facing their businesses and organizations, while simultaneously helping them deploy and update the cybersecurity solutions that mitigate those threats at digital speeds. Fortinet’s expansive threat intelligence services provide partners with the threat intelligence tools and resources they need to ensure their customers can establish and maintain an effective security posture.

Check out our entry level designation of the Fortinet Network Security Expert (NSE) program. It is intended to provide a basic understanding of the threat landscape facing networks today. Anyone interested to learn about the threat landscape and cybersecurity should take this course for more learning. Also learn more about the Fortinet Network Security Academy available to educators and students or the FortiVets program.

Download our latest Fortinet Global Threat Landscape Report to find out more detail about recent threat landscape trends. Sign up for our weekly FortiGuard Threat Brief.

Know your vulnerabilities – get the facts about your network security. A Fortinet Cyber Threat Assessment can help you better understand: Security and Threat Prevention, User Productivity, and Network Utilization and Performance.