As we’ve navigated some of the issues around implementing a Zero Trust strategy, we’ve done two things: explained the difference between Zero Trust and microsegmentation and worked through the need for visibility in order to achieve Zero Trust.
So now we know:
- What Zero Trust is
- What our network is doing (we’ve got visibility)
Now it’s time for everyone’s favorite term in the era of Big Data: analysis.
Assess the risks you have
This is the first step – assessing risks in light of the current environment (assets and topologies), weaknesses (vulnerabilities) and attacker tendencies (threat intelligence). Within the FireMon suite, users rely on four techniques to assess risk:
- Traffic Flow Analysis
- Access Path Analysis
- Attack Simulation
- Patch Simulation
These four techniques have incredible results for Zero Trust networks. Traffic Flow Analysis (TFA) will show the effects of security controls and rules with all their implications. Access Path Analysis will show you exactly which citizens of the federation are communicating and in what way. Attack Simulation shows you the precise ways an exposure can be exploited. And Patch Simulation directs your efforts with quantitative risk scoring and risk ranking for the highest benefit.
The important concept to remember here is that everything is real-world. These aren’t abstract pathways and scenarios you’ll be looking at. These scenarios link vulnerabilities, network assets, topologies and policy.
With visibility and open APIs, you see into your network. What’s there?
With analysis, you look at the effects of network policies and rules.
How does all this come together?
We’re talking about hyper-segmented Zero Trust networks. Now we have visibility and analytical tools for determining vulnerabilities and pathways.
But how is everything going to come together? There’s no way we can do this manually, right? It would take generations. We don’t have that kind of time.
Actually what we’re going to do is begin with intent. You’ve probably heard of intent-based networking. We’ll we’re taking it a step further with intent-based security, which, you might have guessed, will be our next topic. Stay tuned.
In the meantime: we put together a 3,737-word eBook on Zero Trust, tying in industry research from Forrester. It goes into greater detail about Traffic Flow Analysis, Access Path Analysis, Attack Simulation and Patch Simulation. If Zero Trust is on your radar in 2018, it’s worth a read.