0  /  100
17 Nov 2022
  • Website Development

Streamlining Vulnerability Management for Enhanced Security

Start Reading
By Tyrone Showers
Co-Founder Taliferro


This white paper provides security teams with the information they need to build or enhance an effective, agile vulnerability management program that maximizes their resources.

Executive Overview

My goal is to help you understand the nature of security vulnerability remediation and how it can be done more effectively. It will outline the challenges involved in remediating vulnerabilities across an organization, then provide an overview of the most common approaches. Finally, it will describe a scalable system for remediation that can help you reduce costs while increasing efficiency and improving risk management effectiveness.

What's The Problem?

How do I deal with all these vulnerabilities?

The solution

A scalable approach for remediation. Simple right?

Let's dive into how to help organizations address their vulnerability management needs in a way that scales across large organizations or multiple locations and provides maximum cost savings while maintaining quality assurance standards.

What is needed to help security teams with the information they need to build or enhance an effective, agile vulnerability management program that maximizes their resources.

The problem is that you have a lot of security vulnerabilities to fix, and the process is time-consuming and expensive. It would help if you had a better way to manage this work.

Your solution could be a vulnerability management program that helps you prioritize risk, remediate vulnerabilities quickly, and identify high-priority new threats. These programs also improve visibility into your network assets, so you can preemptively address potential problems before they become more significant issues.

What is Vulnerability Remediation?

Why is it important?

What are the key takeaways?

How does it help me?

Lot's of question so let's dive in!

The main risks to remediation?

Not doing nothing! This is the most obvious risk, but the severity of this risk can vary depending on what you are trying to fix and how much time has passed since the vulnerability was identified. If you have a vulnerability actively being exploited by cybercriminals and they're gaining access to your network, then you're really in trouble if you don't do anything.

a remediation program that works

Many companies rely heavily on their security vendors or consultants to manage their remediation activities or even implement specific solutions such as patching software systems or updating firmware on IoT devices. Still, often those vendors need to provide all the tools required for effective remediation execution and company-wide coordination across teams (such as IT Operations, Information Security). Furthermore, many organizations lack adequate visibility into their overall security posture, making it challenging to prioritize vulnerabilities based on their impact level or likelihood of exploitation (known as "risk"). Therefore these organizations focus primarily on fixing high-priority vulnerabilities (e.g., those impacting critical systems) while leaving medium/low priority ones unattended until they become more essential over time due to new threats emerging in the wild."

Today's vast majority of organizations still manage their vulnerabilities using a traditional process based on lists, spreadsheets, and email. This conventional approach is often overly manual, which increases the time it takes for analysts to remediate vulnerabilities. Additionally, keeping track of how many vulnerabilities are waiting in line for completion can be challenging.

In addition to being inefficient and error-prone, this approach fails to address an increasingly important aspect of security: agility. The increasing frequency and severity level of threats mean that organizations need their security teams focused on responding quickly to new incidents rather than performing manual tasks such as analyzing vulnerability data or making sure they have enough capacity available before starting work on new remediations. In other words: if the processes you're using need to be more flexible for your needs today (or tomorrow), then they won't be able to adapt to changing circumstances as well as you need them to.

Why remediation is challenging for large companies?

Remediation can be a complex and time-consuming process. Large organizations may face the following challenges during remediation:

  • Budget constraints. It is expensive to hire external contractors and consultants, who often charge hourly rates that include project management and technical expertise. Furthermore, you need to factor in the cost of software licenses if you decide to use commercial solutions instead of open-source ones or self-developed tools.
  • Technical complexity. Remediating vulnerabilities requires extensive knowledge about IT security and specific knowledge about your infrastructure and applications so that you can identify vulnerable components with minimal effort wasted on false positives (i.e., false alarms). Many large companies have teams dedicated solely to this task. However, they still do not have enough personnel available at all times due to high turnover rates (elderly employees retiring) or hiring freezes during economic downturns where companies cut back on spending across departments, including IT budgets. This means fewer resources available for hiring new employees even though more people are needed due to attrition rates increasing over time due to people leaving voluntarily or involuntarily. This is mostly due to misalignment between expectations vs. reality when working conditions change unexpectedly, which causes job dissatisfaction and resignation).

You can prioritize remediation by taking advantage of a common remediation strategy. This approach involves evaluating the severity and prioritization of vulnerabilities and then remediating them in accordance with their priority ranking.

Prioritization is important as it ensures that high-priority vulnerabilities are fixed before low-priority ones, which reduces the risk to your organization's systems. Vulnerabilities that don't impact your network should be left until later in the process, after you've addressed more important issues such as missing patches or configuration errors. If you start with these lower-risk vulnerabilities instead of high-risk ones, then they'll likely be fixed before they cause problems because they're not affecting anything else on your system anyway (and thus will have less impact on productivity).

Although it can seem daunting to create a remediation program from scratch, the process is actually quite straightforward. Before you begin, however, you must first consider what exactly will make your remediation program successful.

It's important to note that not all security vulnerabilities are equal in severity or importance. For example, one vulnerability might allow an attacker to steal credit card data while another might allow them access to the entire network and all of its data. Therefore, when creating your remediation program you should understand which vulnerabilities are critical and which ones can be resolved later on down the road.

Once you have identified these vulnerabilities and prioritized them accordingly (i.e., "critical" being the highest priority), it is time to build out your remediation plan itself!

The first step here would be deciding how long each vulnerability will take before being fixed; this could range anywhere from hours/days up through months/years depending on its severity level as well as other factors such as budget constraints or resource availability within organization's infrastructure team(s).

The traditional approach to vulnerability management is no longer feasible. Traditional approaches to risk and compliance management are not agile enough to keep pace with the rapid change of modern IT infrastructure, which has led to organizations adopting a reactive "patch and pray" approach.

The approaches used by security teams are highly manual, cumbersome and do not scale as the number of vulnerabilities increases. For example, Vulnerability remediation requires you to manually identify vulnerable assets in your environment, then manually determine the appropriate remediation steps for each asset—a process that can take weeks or months depending on how many assets have been impacted by a vulnerability. And even after all this time spent identifying the vulnerabilities and creating remediation plans for each one, there's still no way for you or your team members who work on different areas of IT infrastructure in your organization (such as servers) easily access those plans—or share their own information with other teams when they're working with similar issues elsewhere in their own organizations' infrastructures (again: servers).

The security industry is in a state of flux. The rapid pace of new attacks and the ever-growing complexity of existing threats are causing many to question how they can keep up. On top of that, organizations are experiencing pressure from regulators as well as their own customers to improve their overall security posture.

As with any complex process, there are many ways for it to go wrong. The most common failure is to treat vulnerability remediation as an isolated event. Vulnerability remediation tends to be treated as a set of tasks that needs to be completed quickly but can often result in missed opportunities or risks being left unaddressed. One example would be the assessment of software versions across all devices within an organization; while this is typically done with some form of automation, it can be tempting for teams to focus on completing the process without taking time to consider what they're doing or why they're doing it.

Another common failure when it comes to remediating vulnerabilities involves focusing too much on technology instead of processes and people


DevOps is not a panacea. It's true that DevOps can help organizations improve their ability to manage vulnerabilities and apply patches, but it's important to understand that DevOps alone will not solve all of your remediation issues.

It's also worth noting that DevOps shouldn't be used as an excuse for poor security practices or lack of governance in general. You still have a responsibility to ensure your infrastructure is secure and compliant with regulations such as GDPR and PCI DSS, so while automation can be helpful in this regard, it should never come at the expense of proper oversight.

How to move from a cycle of "find and remediate" to a continuous process of discovery and risk mitigation.

Automation can be used to control risk in your organization. In other words, once you have discovered potential vulnerabilities in your software applications, how can automated tools help ensure that they are actually fixed?

Automation can improve efficiency within your security program by reducing manual processes while increasing accuracy and consistency across teams and projects.

Automation also improves communication with stakeholders by providing visibility into what has been discovered as well as what has been done about it—reducing redundancy between teams while increasing accountability for remediation efforts

The need to automate and orchestrate this process is evident. Remediating vulnerabilities is a high-touch, complex task that requires specialized skills, time, and resources. By automating activities in a repeatable way, organizations can reduce their remediation costs and increase efficiency.

Automatation or orchestration can be applied to all aspects of the process: from discovery and qualification through remediation execution to reporting on progress. These capabilities help accelerate the assessment process by eliminating manual steps such as:

  • mapping assets against vulnerability scans
  • allowing human intervention only when necessary
  • reducing errors during implementation
  • improving team collaboration
  • creating visualizations for understanding results at scale
  • providing dashboards for quick, actionable information throughout your organization

Vulnerability management is a critical part of security operations. However, it's often overlooked by both organizations and vendors due to its complexity, which can lead to inefficient programs. This white paper will help you streamline your vulnerability management program and address business requirements while effectively communicating risk:

You can scale up your vulnerability management program by integrating DevOps into your existing architecture. We can help you automate remediation and streamline the process of patching vulnerabilities. As a result, you'll be able to address business requirements and effectively communicate risk in a more efficient manner.

The future of vulnerability management is here, so don't wait another moment before getting started!


The security landscape is constantly changing. As threats evolve, so must the tools used to combat them. Fortunately, there are ways to streamline your vulnerability management program and keep up with the pace of change in today's world. By using automation and orchestration for high touch tasks, you can bring consistency and efficiency to what was once a significant burden on your organization's resources. For more information on how to implement these strategies within your own organization, please contact us today!

Tyrone Showers