Defense in Depth — Protect Your Organization at the DNS Layer with DNS Firewall

Security professionals agree that a strong security posture is one that is implemented in a layered approach. This layered approach is also referred to as “defense-in-depth.” A defense-in-depth strategy consists of applying security mechanisms across your organization to ensure sufficient coverage against the wide variety of cyber threats.

A comprehensive defense-in-depth strategy requires security mechanisms to be applied through the implementation of hardware, software and security policies. Hardware protection includes, but is not limited to, the implementation of next generation firewalls (NGFW), intrusion prevention systems/intrusion detection systems (IPS/IDS) and secure Web gateways (SWG). Software-based protection is done through anti-virus software deployments, automated patch management or tools for Internet monitoring. Finally, no defense-in-depth strategy would be complete without the implementation of strong security policies that prescribe processes for incident reporting, service and system audits, and security awareness training.

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Verisign Champions Cybersecurity Awareness in October

Cybersecurity is no longer a concern for just IT and security professionals. Recent breaches at organizations like Sony, Target, JP Morgan Chase, and numerous U.S. government entities have brought the issue of cyber-attacks very close to home. If you bank online, use your debit card at a local store or engage in any activity that relies on an Internet-connected system, you are at risk.

As part of National Cyber Security Awareness Month (NCSAM), Verisign is joining with organizations and companies around the country to promote online safety and champion a safer, more secure and trusted Internet. Every week in October, we’ll share research and online safety tips from our resident cybersecurity experts via our blog and LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter posts.

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Verisign iDefense Analysis of XcodeGhost

At Verisign we take our Internet stewardship mission very seriously, so when details emerged over the past week concerning the XcodeGhost infection, researchers at Verisign iDefense wanted to help advance community research efforts related to the XcodeGhost issue, and leveraging our unique capabilities, offer a level of public service to help readers determine their current and historical level of exposure to the infection.

Background

First identified in recent days on the Chinese microblog site Sina Weibo, XcodeGhost is an infection of Xcode, the framework developers use to create apps for Apple’s iOS and OS X operating systems. Most developers download secure Xcode from Apple. However, some acquire unofficial versions from sites with faster download speeds.
Apps created with XcodeGhost contain instructions, unknown to both the app developers and the end users, that collect potentially sensitive information from the user’s device and send it to command-and-control (C2) servers managed by the XcodeGhost operator. This way, the XcodeGhost operators circumvented the security of Apple’s official Xcode distribution, and the security of Apple’s App Store.
Image 1: iDefense IntelGraph chart and intelligence alert, “XcodeGhost”
The infection had widespread impact. As of September 25th, Palo Alto Networks and Fox-IT had identified more than 87 infected apps by name, and FireEye claimed to have identified more than 4,000 infected apps. This activity impacts millions of users both in China and elsewhere in the world. To understand key aspects of the infection, iDefense researchers leveraged authoritative DNS traffic patterns to the C2 domains.

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Introducing Verisign Public DNS: A Free Recursive DNS Service That Respects Your Privacy

There are two types of information that can be found online about you: the information you intentionally post and the information that is automatically collected.

The information that you intentionally post is what you want everyone to know about you. Your professional life is documented on LinkedIn. Your social activities with friends and family are chronicled on Facebook. You alert the world of your immediate thoughts on Twitter. You even choose to provide your address and credit card information when buying things online. All of this personal information about you is deliberately posted and collected with your consent.

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Is Your E-Commerce Site Ready for the Holidays?

Even though summer is just heating up, internet retailers already have visions of dollar signs dancing in their heads as they prepare for the onslaught of holiday web traffic that will soon ring in the 2015 holiday season. However, much of their focus is on marketing, and not the critical security measures they need to have in place to help keep their customers safe and satisfied as they shop online during the holidays. 

As we have seen from the numerous security breaches and cyberattacks reported during last year’s holiday season, understanding the threat landscape and putting appropriate mitigation plans in place is critical to a business’s revenue and reputation.  Just one hour of network downtime due to an outage or malicious attack can have far reaching consequences for a retailer, especially during the holidays. 

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Verisign OpenHybrid™ for Corero and Amazon Web Services Now Available

Verisign outlined its vision for a revolutionary new approach to Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) protection by announcing the availability of the Verisign OpenHybrid™ architecture, which helps organizations protect their critical assets and applications across distributed environments from DDoS attacks, using a single solution. By integrating intelligence from a customer’s existing security defenses, Verisign OpenHybrid™ provides timely detection and restoration of services in the event of an attack, while providing increased visibility of DDoS threats across multiple environments such as private datacenters and public clouds.

In an earlier blog post on the topic, I noted the increasing scale and complexity of DDoS attacks, and the strong need for organizations to enable awareness and mitigation of attacks across on-premise devices, in addition to both public and private cloud environments using standards based open protocols.

Today we are pleased to announce two important updates in our path toward enabling open DDoS protection: the availability of Verisign OpenHybrid™ for Corero SmartWall TDS and Verisign OpenHybrid™ for customers hosted in the Amazon Web Services Elastic Compute Cloud.

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Almost Half of Companies Lack DDoS Response Plans

It’s tempting to see the threat of distributed denial of service (DDoS) as noise in the background of cybersecurity discussions, but don’t be fooled. Any risk to your critical web infrastructure can have a severe impact to your business, and given that the frequency, scale and sophistication of these types of attacks are increasing, the threat is very real.

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