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Sep 07, 2023

Threat Hunting: The Vanguard of Modern Cyber Defense

As enterprises harness the power of technology for innovation and growth, they also grapple with the ever-present and exponentially growing risk of cyber threats. Digital transformations have rapidly introduced many new modern assets, but have yet to displace most legacy systems. Modern and legacy systems have become widely integrated and interconnected at scale, with a list of exposures that expands near monthly. In such complex environments with a high risk and potential for material business impact, threat hunting emerges as a linchpin, ensuring that organizations remain resilient in the face of evolving cyber challenges.

What is Threat Hunting?

At its core, threat hunting is a proactive cybersecurity approach where experts actively and iteratively search through networks and assets to detect threats evading existing defense, detection and response capabilities. Unlike traditional security measures that react to alerts, threat hunting is about seeking out the adversary before they signal their presence.

The Methodology Behind Threat Hunting

Threat hunting is not a random process. It’s methodical and driven by both intelligence and hypothesis. Hunters often begin with a hypothesis about a potential threat, which could be based on current threat intelligence, industry news, or even gut instinct. They then use advanced tools and techniques to test this hypothesis, diving deep into the network’s data, logs, and patterns.

The Significance of Threat Hunting

Given the sophisticated nature of modern cyber adversaries, relying solely on automated alerts is no longer sufficient, particularly when such alerts are not being continuously optimized in response to the constantly evolving business and threat landscapes. Bad actors often employ tactics designed to evade traditional and generally static detection systems. By actively seeking out these threats, threat hunters can identify and neutralize them before they escalate into full-blown incidents.

Of equal importance, regular threat hunts frequently result in the direct identification of monitoring and defense gaps with the potential for business disruption. This added context and evidence of the potential for exploitation often simplifies prioritization and accelerates remediation efforts, particularly when such responsibilities lie with other teams.

Recent data from the State of Cyberwarfare report paints a concerning picture: many organizations face heightened cyber threats that directly impede their growth and innovation strategies. Some even reconsider or halt digital initiatives due to these looming threats.
Threat hunting that spans all connected assets with the potential to disrupt what matters most to the business helps ensure that operations remain effectively aligned to the business and in support of its evolving priorities.

Advantages of Incorporating Threat Hunting

Incorporating threat hunting into an organization’s cybersecurity framework offers 3 key advantages:

  • Early Detection: Proactive measures, such as threat hunting, often lead to faster detection and mitigation of threats, reducing the overall impact of potential breaches.
  • Enhanced Security Posture: Continuous threat hunting provides insights that refine and strengthen an organization’s overall security strategy.
  • Operational Efficiency: With a focus on real threats, organizations can allocate resources more effectively, minimizing the noise of false positives.

As digital transformations push forward, the role of threat hunting has become increasingly pivotal. It’s the vanguard, ensuring that as businesses innovate, they do so securely, with a keen eye on potential cyber adversaries and their ability to disrupt what matters most.

For organizations aiming to bolster their defenses and navigate the digital landscape with confidence, Armis Managed Threat Services (MTS) is here to help. With its emphasis on expert-led, tailored threat hunts spanning all connected assets (not only IT), MTS provides a comprehensive solution tailored to the unique challenges of the modern digital landscape.

As the digital frontier expands and cyber challenges evolve, the importance of threat hunting remains paramount. It’s the beacon that guides organizations, ensuring a secure and prosperous journey in the digital realm.

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