Topic 1: Advanced and Persistent Threats
One of the biggest risks that companies face is advanced persistent threats. Discuss the most effective way to implement policies that mitigate the chance of an insider either taking part in or facilitating an advanced persistent threat. What policies can help manage the insider threat for an organization’s supply-chain companies, or the organization’s off-shore contractors? Integrate the concept of separation of duties into your discussion.
1. Notional Supply Chain Risk Management Practices for Federal Information Systems [2012, NIST – note that the term “insider threat” is not used in the document, but multiple practices are outlined for controlling risks posed by personnel).
2. The Risk of Insider Fraud: Second Annual Study [2013, Ponemon – not specifically supply-chain related, but a detailed overview of the current understanding of the risk posed to enterprises by insider threats generally]
3. Cybersecurity: An Examination of the Communications Supply Chain [2013 – video / transcript of Congressional hearing examining multiple aspects of this topic
Topic 2: Mandiant Report
On Feb. 19, 2013 Mandiant released a report alleging that a specific Chinese military unit is behind one of the largest cyber espionage and attack campaigns aimed at American infrastructure and corporations. Public understanding of Advanced Persistent Threats (APT) is weak, attribution remains difficult, and cyberattacks are often dismissed as criminal or peripheral to national security. This carefully-researched report is significant because it convincingly and publicly assigns attribution for ongoing cyber espionage to groups supported by China. By publishing, Mandiant hopes that —
(a) this report will lead to increased understanding and coordinated action in countering APT network breaches; and
(b) its resulting exposure and discussion may thwart APT activities.
After reading the article at the link below and perusing the Mandiant report, discuss whether Mandiant’s two desired outcomes above are likely to occur.
NYT summary: http://ezproxy.umuc.edu/login?url=http://search.proquest.com/docview/1288537806?accountid=14580
NPR audio: http://www.npr.org/2013/02/19/172431535/report-chinese-government-hackers-behind-dozens-of-attacks-on-u-s-companies