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Dec 28 2008   3:14PM GMT

Securing the Security Devices

Arian Eigen Heald Arian Eigen Heald Profile: Arian Eigen Heald

OK, so you’ve bought the glow-in-the-dark, meets all the compliance requirements and looks really shiny “security solution” from a vendor (one or many).

Or maybe your management has bought it and presented it to you as a fait accompli. (Hope I’m spelling that fancy French right!) And of course either you have to manage it (without training, “that’s too expensive, just watch the consultants put it in”), or it’s been “outsourced.”

Or as an auditor, you’ve been told to use it for all auditing functions, and not worry about doing any follow up or periodic testing because this product is such a “time-saver.”

So, how do you know (my favorite question) it’s working and doing a good job? Not what the fancy report it produces says, not what the consultant says, not what the manual says, not what the boss says. What you can actually see.

I’ve been following a discussion on the Security Focus “pen-test” mailing list about how security software has just as many issues as regular software. I don’t like thinking that the software protecting me and writing to a SQL database is using an unencrypted ODBC connection that can be captured by ARP poisoning.

So, although I am rarely asked to audit or test a firewall, IDS or host IDS, having run and learned on all of them, I have some suggestions for you to try out.

NEXT: How to Audit Your IDS/Firewall/ECM for free.

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