see more


Get to know us better! Gain valuable insights into how we think by visiting our blog, or take a look at the industry events we're frequenting on our events page. You can also geek out with us by attending one of our security management webinars, or dive head first into the products and solutions we provide in our Resource Library. There's lots to keep you busy! 



Combatting Hybrid Attacks
Oct 12, 2017
A new “hybrid” threat has surfaced in the cyber world and has recently helped hackers steal £30 million from a series of banks in post-Soviet…
The Evolution of FireMon’s Ignite Partner Program - A Q&A with Kurt Mills
Oct 11, 2017
We caught up with FireMon’s VP of Worldwide Channel Sales and Operations, Kurt Mills, on the Ignite Partner Program. It went a little something like…
GDPR: Security Management Best Practices You Need to Know
Sep 15, 2017
“Go live” for GDPR is May 25, 2018. If you haven’t started your GDPR journey yet, now is the time. The GDPR intends to protect…
High profile data breaches prove security investments are only half the battl…
Sep 11, 2017
Since the start of 2017, we’ve seen some epic data breaches leaving millions of affected consumers uncertain about the security of their personal information and…

Threat Hunting: What Is It?

There have been buckets of digital ink spilled addressing the topic of threat hunting. The challenge is getting a unified definition of this evolving security discipline. The analysts have chimed in, such as Anton Chuvakin of Gartner among others, and there is no shortage of vendors claiming everything from advanced workflows to artificial intelligence.

Let us take a step back and establish the principles of good threat hunting – putting aside the marketing spin for the latest hunting app.

Threat hunting is primarily a discipline performed by humans, and it begins with a state of mind. The assumption of compromise is essential to any threat hunting operation as it recognizes that network invasions are already underway. The goal of any hunting program is to find and eliminate the present danger, not to scan the vulnerability points for hypothetical [future] concern.

Good hunting operations recognize that the human brain is the best analytic information processor in all of creation. Hunting is a human activity, and we need a method for humans to do their best work. I spoke about this before in our 2017 Outlook.

There are several techniques and methods you can quickly implement to advance a threat hunting program. Let’s examine them in turn.

Assembling Data
Though this may seem obvious, it is the leading impediment to world-class hunting – not because of a lack of data, but the assembly of the data. Often, hunters are awash with data with little guidance on how to assemble it all in meaningful ways. Good hunting begins with assembling data so that it can be adequately interrogated.

Assembling data is like learning a language. It is a discrete and combinatorial exercise where open-ended results can be achieved. If you understand, “This is the cat that ate the mouse,” then there is nothing preventing you from understanding, “This is the mouse that ate the cheese.” By following a grammar – a code for assembly – the combinations are endless.

Once we have assembled the data, we can move to seeing its connections.

Clustering Data
This is a simple statistical technique of taking the assembled data and applying attributive details to each data element – data enrichment. This gives raw data the opportunity to cluster to other data elements with similar attributes. For example, an IP address as a standalone data element does not reveal much. However, once the data is enriched with greater attributes, it can have “n” number of combinatorial connections. It is through clustering that seemingly benign events become indicators of compromise (IOC).

Often, organizations use machine learning to handle the rapid enrichment needed for large datasets. We can allow computers to do the work of assembling and attributing our data, freeing up the time for hunters to, well…hunt.

External Connections
Hunting teams must cross-reference what is presently happening internally (as revealed by the assembled data) to what is known externally. Using external sources such as Palo Alto Autofocus, VirusTotal and Symantec DeepSight, hunters can take their unknown and discover what is known about their own IOCs.

As an example, a hunter may notice a sign of persistence with a given attack associated with a URL (now that everything has been clustered). The hunter can then look up the URL to determine what else is known about it, then pivot back to their own environment to locate the user, machine or service presently connected to the compromised site.

Open-ended Search
Methodologically speaking, hunters can find much more when investigating data with open-ended questions instead of base queries. Why is that?

Consider how anyone searches for information on the Internet for training their new puppy. What if a user began by opening a browser and wrote if/then statements filled with filters to find the pages of greatest relevance to dog-training? That would require a full understanding of the structure of each potential page, its content and countless other variables. In short, our search would be infeasible. If the user did find something, she could be missing critical information that didn’t match the query.

Now, consider what would happen if our intrepid user searched using Google. She simply types away a few phrases and Google uncannily delivers the pages with the greatest relevance. This is open-ended search. Our user does not need to know what the destination will be in advance, its content or structure. Google uses a tokenizing technique to cluster what’s most relevant (even when only the gist is similar) to give the user boundless results, ranked by likelihood.

Let’s apply this same method to security. Hunters need the opportunity to have an open-ended dialogue with data – assembled, clustered and externally informed data. Once we have this in place, we are on our way to hunting excellence.

Getting to Carnegie Hall
There’s a clever quip that goes, “How do you get to Carnegie Hall?” The answer: Practice, practice, practice. I have outlined the principles of threat hunting program, and I have stated unapologetically how the human brain is our best resource for achieving the results we crave. Now, it’s time to put it into practice.

Security professionals have tremendous domain expertise. You should see now that we are climbing the escalator of hunting techniques to unleash that expertise.

  • For the most part, you do not need more data – assemble it effectively
  • Cluster that data through tokens and attribution – metadata enrichment
  • Use external sources – an assumption of compromise requires humility
  • Open-ended search – the only way to find the unknown

Customers of FireMon’s Immediate Insight have grown their competency in all areas of threat hunting through automated data assembly, machine learning attribution and natural language extraction, integrating external sources and giving hunting teams the platform for open-ended search. Join us for our webinar Data Orchestration for Incident Response Thursday, March 30 at 2:00p CDT. Register >>

Josh Mayfield leads platform sales for Immediate Insight, FireMon's security analytics solution.



Sep 26, 2017 GDPR: Security Management Best Practices You Need to Know
In this webinar, FireMon’s resident GDPR expert, Tim Woods, will help lay the groundwork for a plan to comply by the 2018 deadline. We’ll also cover the vital role security management plays in protecting data from the start, including these specific capabilities you need to comply with Articles 25, 32, 35 and 58.
Sep 21, 2017 Quantify the Network Attack Surface to Improve Incident Response and Threat Detection

Many threat investigations begin with responders working to understand possible threat vectors on the network that could explain malicious activity. One powerful way to improve the efficiency of our responders is to help them understand the network attack surface as configured attack paths that represent potential exploit paths.

On Sept 21st we’ll share how FireMon’s Risk Analyzer and Immediate Insight products bring together threat investigation and attack path analysis to accelerate incident response and threat detection.
Aug 22, 2017 Correlating Vulnerability Scans with Network Path Analysis to Find and Remediate the Biggest Risks to Your Network and Avoid Wasting Time on the Little Ones

Vulnerability scanning has its place but I’ve often found that it produces a mountain of data with little guidance for prioritizing updates other than a relative high/medium/low risk rating of the exploit itself and of the device’s value.

Jul 27, 2017 Bridge the Gap Between Your Risk & Network Teams to Reduce Risk
Recent cyberattacks such as Wannacry and Petya magnify the need to make risk and vulnerability management a top priority for organizations.  Combine that with a network security posture that is too open from years of access changes and little policy cleanup, organizations are more at risk now than at any time in history. 


Sep 05, 2017
SAO v. SIEM Security Suites: And the winner is...
Aug 30, 2017
Jimmy Nukebot Explodes on the Scene, Transforming NeutrinoPOS
Info Security
Aug 17, 2017
The Top Security Challenges for 2017
SC Magazine
Aug 14, 2017
Creditseva, KS Enterprises Breaches Highlight Need for Improved Cloud Security
eSecurity Planet
Jul 31, 2017
What is IT governance? A formal way to align IT & business strategy
Jul 28, 2017
How organizations can work toward GDPR compliance
Information Management
Jul 09, 2017
4 Signs Check Point Software's Best Days Are Ahead
Motley Fool
Jun 07, 2017
Qakbot malware from 2009 returns, causes Active Directory lockouts
SC Magazine UK
Jun 06, 2017
Botched security: Celebrities, other patients, affected after plastic surgery files are breached and stolen
SC Magazine
Jun 06, 2017
Election cyberattack proves people are still the biggest flaw
Jun 01, 2017
250K Photos Leaked in Cosmetic Surgery Extortion Attack
Info Security
Jun 01, 2017
OneLogin Breach Reignites Concerns over Password Managers
Dark Reading
Jun 01, 2017
OneLogin Breach Reignites Concerns over Password Managers
Dark Reading
May 29, 2017
How to manage the Complexity Gap
IT Pro Portal
May 26, 2017
Hackers upgrading malware to 64-bit code to evade detection
SC Magazine UK
May 25, 2017
83 percent of security staff waste time fixing other IT problems
May 24, 2017
Unsanctioned Computer Support Costs Companies $88K per Year
Dark Reading
May 23, 2017
WannaCry Successor Is New ‘Doomsday’ SMB Worm That Uses 7 NSA Hacking Tools
Information Security Buzz
May 23, 2017
WannaCry? Not really. A report from the 11th Eskenzi PR IT Analyst and CISO Forum
Computer Weekly
May 18, 2017
Cisco Warns Of Un-Patchable WannaCrypt Vulnerabilities
Information Security Buzz
May 16, 2017
Here comes the cloud...and it's all right
SC Magazine
May 15, 2017
10 ways cyber security will evolve in the face of growing threats
Information Age
May 12, 2017
Managing Complexity Is No. 1 Security Challenge in FireMon’s Annual State of the Firewall Report
Computing Security
May 12, 2017
Sabre Breach
Information Security Buzz
May 12, 2017
FireMon Announces Industry’s First Intelligent Cloud Security Management Solution
IT Security Guru
May 12, 2017
FireMon Releases Third Annual State of the Firewall Report
Dark Reading
May 12, 2017
WikiLeaks drops 'Grasshopper' documents, part four of its CIA Vault 7 files
  See all news from 2017

Resource Library

Audit Compliance


Policy Change

Solution Briefs

Policy Change

White Papers

Visibility Monitoring Management

Analyst Reports

Policy Change

Case Studies

Security Manager
Overview of FireMon’s Flagship Firewall Management Solution
Policy Planner
Overview of FireMon’s Change Automation Solution
Policy Optimizer
Overview of FireMon’s Rule Recertification Automation Solution
Risk Analyzer
Overview of FireMon’s Attack Simulation and Risk Measurement Solution
Immediate Insight
Overview of FireMon’s Immediate Insight Solution
Intelligent Security Management
Delivering next-generation security management that boosts productivity and accelerates the agility of business
Intelligent Policy Automation
Intelligent Policy Automation: Orchestrating Change Management with Speed and Security.
Hybrid Cloud Management
Visibility into and control over Cloud Services, including AWS and OpenStack Platforms
Accelerated Incident Response
Immediate Insight in action - Orchestration, automation and analytics for data assembly and discovery
Change Simulation & Risk Scoring
Proactively reduce risk based upon network exposure and host accessibility
Check Point Solution Brief
FireMon solutions and Check Point
Cisco Solution Brief

FireMon’s Intelligent Security Management platform enables users with Cisco Systems switches, routers and firewalls (Pix, ASA, FirePower) to work smarter, applying intelligence to the entire security program

Fortinet Solution Brief
FireMon solutions for Fortinet
Juniper Solution Brief
FireMon solutions for Juniper
NSX Solution Brief
FireMon solutions for NSX
Palo Alto Solution Brief
FireMon Solutions for Palo Alto
Planning Considerations for Compliance with GDPR
The GDPR deadline is approaching quickly. If you haven’t started your GDPR journey yet, now is the time.
2017 State of the Firewall
Networking continues to evolve, yet the firewall remains critical to securing today’s enterprises. FireMon is proud to present its 3rd Annual State of the Firewall Report
Firewall Cleanup Recommendations
The implications of firewall policy complexity, why it remains a problem today and how to resolve it.
Risk Solved: Automated, Real-Time Risk Analysis & Remediation
Risk analysis with real-time change configuration is key to managing security risks in your IT infrastructure.
Real-Time Data Triage
Our Immediate Insight platform from FireMon can help organizations overcome the limitations and gaps inherent to the current analytic market.
Bridging the SIEM Alert Triage Gap
Immediate Insight enables security teams to improve event triage and incident response, extending the value of your existing full-featured SIEM.
Automation Isn't One-Size-Fits-All
Intelligent Policy Automation
Intelligent Security Management

Helping Enterprise Security Teams Improve Resource Efficiency & Reduce Overall Risk Exposure

The Top 5 Myths of Data Breaches
Five of the biggest myths that exist about data breaches, and explain how and why they occur.
Firewall Sprawl: Top Four Security Gaps Exposed

Firewall technology has come a long way since its initial, most rudimentary forms. Next-Generation Firewalls (NGFW) are the latest development, and organizations are accelerating adoption to the new technology. But NGFWs aren’t a fix-all solution.

2016 State of the Firewall
2nd Annual State of the Firewall Report based on survey of 600 IT security practitioners.
Avoid These 'Bottom Ten' Networking Worst Practices
Overcoming the Complexity Gap
When You Can't Patch It, Protect It from the Network
Firewall Sprawl
Aberdeen Group
Quantifying the Value of Intelligent Security Management
Aberdeen Group
Security Analytics Brings Data-Driven Security Into the 21st Century
Automate Zero Trust Policy and Enforcement
The Return on Security of FireMon’s Security Manager
Large Healthcare Provider
The customer sought a data analysis tool to correlate application data with network and security data to spot service-impacting anomalies. They did not have an accurate picture of interoperability between applications and the underlying infrastructure.
Major Airline
Following a merger with another airline, this customer was left managing a large number of firewalls and routers from different security vendors using a home-grown application.
National Insurance Provider
This national insurance provider had three problems to tackle regarding their firewall policies. First, the number of rules under management was overwhelming staff and processes. They needed to increase visibility and effectiveness of their firewall change request/workflow ticketing process. And they also need help maintaining compliance PCI DSS requirements.
Managed Service Provider
Each time this Global MSP engaged a new customer, they had to onboard the firewalls – sometimes hundreds per engagement – into their network. Part of the onboarding process required assessing the policies against internal best practices – a manual, line-by-line process that took an average of 16 hours/firewall and was extremely error-prone.