Interior Page Icon

Device Hardening

Making It Harder for Components to Be Compromised

The Big Idea

Locking down or improving the defenses of component systems and services makes the attacker’s job harder.

Cyber Resiliency Goals & Objectives

Device Hardening supports the Anticipate goal and the Prevent objective.

Design Principles

The design principles for Device Hardening will improve the defenses of component systems and services, and thus make the adversary work harder.

What Can Be Done Now

Apply standards of good practice for privilege restriction, patching, and configuration management to all components of the enterprise architecture.

The Right People & Policies

Cyber Attack Lifecycle

Using the cyber resiliency techniques, coordinated defense and privilege restriction, as described above, defenders can impede the adversary’s attack on the enterprise and limit the damage the malware causes. The use of coordinated defense and privilege restriction impede the adversary’s ability to initiate and exploit malware, employ mechanisms to manage the initial victims, execute the attack plan, and maintain their presence in the enterprise. In addition, privilege restriction limits the adversary’s ability to execute the attack plan and maintain their presence.

Synergies & Barriers

Synergies among practices include Privilege Restriction’s use of Coordinated Defense (consistency analysis) to ensure consistent privilege management and privilege based usage restrictions.

Barriers to adoption include the following:

Just Ahead

The growing convergence of enterprise systems and the Internet of Things technologies will increase the importance of locking down all devices that connect to enterprise networks as well as maintaining an awareness of, and treating appropriately, those devices that can’t be locked down. Use virtualization technology to periodically refresh system components (non-persistence) to flush out adversary foothold in the organization and to dynamically change applications and operations systems (diversity) or reposition key assets (dynamic positioning) thus causing adversary attacks to be misdirected and wasted.

See Key Concepts and Terms for definitions

Previous Activity Back to Menu Next Activity