Organizations across every industry are experiencing a wave of innovation driven by digital transformation and the significant volume and diversity of devices coming online. By 2024, there will be an estimated 30 billion active connected devices worldwide. For business leaders, the growth can open windows of opportunities, but it also introduces new cybersecurity challenges. Not all of these devices are built with security in mind which subsequently opens up organizations to new vulnerabilities and risks.
Most organizations do not know how many devices are connected to their corporate network. Many may guess at a rough number, but Forescout research shows most will underestimate the actual number. This is not wholly unexpected, as constant changes from device decay, software failure, staff turnover and corporate mergers can distort this information, but if there is no accurate view of connected devices, how can an organization truly understand their cyber posture?
Every organization needs an accurate asset inventory, but the vast majority of visibility solutions currently on the market only show a portion of the devices on a given network. Security teams often use a patchwork of different tools to attempt to see all categories of devices such as IT, IoT, IoMT and OT/ICS assets, and even then they only obtain an incomplete picture.
Those unseen devices offer entry points for hackers, bad actors and online criminals to infiltrate company systems, steal valuable information and disrupt business operations.
This is where the Forescout Continuum Platform can help. Continuum automatically, and continuously, aligns an organization’s digital reality with its security framework by performing three key modes of evaluation to understand the cyber assets connected. Let’s look at Continuum, its features, and how it changes the world of device management.
Automated discovery for asset inventory
The first rule of cybersecurity is you cannot secure what you cannot see. With automated discovery, organizations can fully understand their environment, or their digital terrain. That includes knowing:
- The number of connected assets
- The types of connected assets
- How these assets connect
- Where they are located
- What their purpose is
Forescout Continuum leverages more than 30 active and passive discovery techniques, including passive deep packet inspection of sensitive OT/ICS and IoMT assets to deliver a true asset inventory. The platform also leverages out-of-the-box wireless, switch and VPN integrations to find all assets.
The platform then compares discovered assets with more than 15 million fingerprints in Forescout’s Device Cloud to accurately classify all assets.
Automated assessment for risk management
Once assets have been discovered and classified, they are assessed for cybersecurity risk. Forescout Continuum includes a multi-factor risk scoring service that displays a contextualized list of threats prioritized based on probable impact. It can help determine if the assets on your network have been properly patched, if they include malware, or if they participate in suspicious activity.
The assessment phase identifies assets whose configuration or behavior is not compliant with the organization’s cybersecurity framework. It also allows you to adjust neglected devices, install patches and ensure proper configurations to minimize attack surface.
Automated governance for cybersecurity compliance
Once digital assets have been discovered and assessed, organizations can enable automated governance actions to mitigate current and future threats. Many organizations, especially those in the healthcare, finance and defense markets must meet security frameworks and regulations. Governance policies can provide options for automatically remediating potential cybersecurity risks, including leveraging remediation, network access control, segmentation and cross-product orchestration. This process provides continuous compliance, minimizing the chance of penalties from failed audits.
With Forescout Continuum, organizations can automate response workflows to follow security policies without additional intervention. This ensures quick remediation of security vulnerabilities without people having to get involved. Continuum also helps bring contextual insights for devices and identify more significant network trends, providing users with enhanced information to improve enforcement policies.
Improved governance through Forescout Continuum can provide:
- Proactive remediation – Misconfigurations fixed in real-time for continuous compliance without human intervention.
- Accelerated response – Policy enforcement and incident response actions at machine speed to contain threats, minimize propagation and mitigate risks.
- Automated workflows – Device compliance enforced natively and via orchestration with other security tools.
Forescout Continuum also sets the foundation for zero trust security. It automates the enforcement of least-privilege access policies based on user, device, connection, posture and compliance for all cyber assets. Organizations can now ensure that their asset management policies evolve with new assets and changing security threats.
The road to improved cyber asset security
Forescout Continuum builds on more than 20 years of innovation and leverages a flexible architecture that can scale to edge networks to identify all cyber assets in heterogeneous, multi-vendor environments.
As technology systems evolve, businesses will see an increased number of devices fall under their purview. The current process many organizations use to manage these devices has already proven to fall short of the challenge ahead of us.
Forescout Continuum solves these challenges. It allows businesses of all sizes in all industries to fully understand their asset inventory, assess potential security risks and automatically mitigate issues quickly and efficiently.