Firms Move To Avert Cyberattacks In Financial System

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A global leader of innovative security solutions that defeat cyberattacks, Sophos, has entered a strategic partnership with the exposure management company, Tenable,, to provide Sophos Managed Risk, a worldwide vulnerability and attack surface management service, as effort to avert cyberattacks in the financial space.

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) reported that 80 per cent of the 978 convictions it secured as at September 2021 were based on cyber fraud. A report by Nigeria Inter Bank Settlement System (NIBSS) indicates that within nine months of 2020, fraudsters made 46,126 attempts to breach data-based systems. Sadly, 41,979 of these were successful – representing 91 per cent of the time.

The modern attack surface has expanded beyond traditional on-premises IT boundaries, with organisations operating frequently unknown numbers of external and internet-facing assets that are unpatched or under protected, leaving them vulnerable to cyberattackers.


The senior vice president for endpoint and security operations product management at Sophos, Rob Harrison, in a press statement made available to LEADERSHIP, said the new service features by Sophos include closing exposed Remote Desktop Protocol (RDP) access, enabling multi-factor authorization and patching vulnerable servers, all of which were top entry points in breaches handled by Sophos Incident Response in 2023.

The Sophos Managed Risk service can assess an organisation's external attack surface, prioritise the riskiest exposures, such as open RDP, and provide tailored remediation guidance to help eliminate blind spots and stay ahead of potentially devastating attacks, Harrison asserted.


“Sophos and Tenable are two industry security leaders coming together to address urgent, pervasive security challenges that organisations continuously struggle to control. We can now help organisations identify and prioritise the remediation of vulnerabilities in external assets, devices and software that are often overlooked. It is critical that organisations manage these exposure risks, because unattended, they only lead to more costly and time-consuming issues and are often the root causes of significant breaches.


“We know from Sophos' worldwide survey data that 32 per cent of ransomware attacks start with an unpatched vulnerability and that these attacks are the most expensive to remediate. The ideal security layers to prevent these issues include an active approach to improving security postures by minimising the chances of a breach with Sophos Managed Risk, Sophos Endpoint, and 24×7 Sophos MDR coverage,” the senior vice president disclosed.


Vice president of global strategic partners and MSSP, Tenable, Greg Goetz, added that, “While the latest zero day may dominate the headlines, the biggest threat to organisations, by a large margin, is still known vulnerabilities – or vulnerabilities for which patches are readily available. A winning approach includes risk-based prioritisation with context-driven analytics to proactively address exposures before they become a problem. Sophos Managed Risk, powered by the Tenable One Exposure Management Platform, delivers outsourced preventive risk management, enabling organisations to anticipate attacks and reduce cyber risk.”


The new service features a dedicated Sophos team that leverages Tenable's exposure management technology and collaborates with the security operations experts from Sophos Managed Detection and Response (MDR) to provide attack surface visibility, continuous risk monitoring, vulnerability prioritisation, investigation, and proactive notification designed to prevent cyberattacks.


Specific key benefits of Sophos Managed Risk include, external attack surface management (EASM), that is the advanced identification and classification of internet-facing assets, such as web and email servers, web applications, and public-facing API endpoints; continuous monitoring and proactive notification of high-risk exposures and vulnerability prioritisation and identification of new risks.



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