* Load the operating system in a secure environment that does not have any worms or bots running rampant on the network. This includes home networks that are directly connected to the Internet without a firewall or router. By the time you get the OS loaded, without maintenance, the system will already be infected. This is especially true for businesses rebuilding hosts in a DMZ that may allow unrestricted Internet activity to touch various hosts. * After you load the OS, continuously run Microsoft update or WSUS to verify all security and maintenance has been applied. * Next, load your endpoint protection solution and perform a vulnerability assessment to verify the OS is hardened with the desired characteristics for your environment or home. * Next, begin loading all utilities and applications for the system. If the application has an auto update engine, make sure you use it. Applications are becoming the number one vulnerability for penetrating the host. * After you are complete, run another vulnerability assessment to confirm the system cannot be exploited due to outdated security maintenance or older applications.While these steps may seem too much for a home user, it's important to understand they are an absolute requirement for any business. Regardless of your AV vendor, without vulnerability assessment and endpoint protection, your systems are vulnerable to exploitation.
Morey J. Haber, Chief Security Officer, BeyondTrust
Morey J. Haber is the Chief Security Officer at BeyondTrust. He has more than 25 years of IT industry experience and has authored three books: Privileged Attack Vectors, Asset Attack Vectors, and Identity Attack Vectors. He is a founding member of the industry group Transparency in Cyber, and in 2020 was elected to the Identity Defined Security Alliance (IDSA) Executive Advisory Board. Morey currently oversees BeyondTrust security and governance for corporate and cloud based solutions and regularly consults for global periodicals and media. He originally joined BeyondTrust in 2012 as a part of the eEye Digital Security acquisition where he served as a Product Owner and Solutions Engineer since 2004. Prior to eEye, he was Beta Development Manager for Computer Associates, Inc. He began his career as Reliability and Maintainability Engineer for a government contractor building flight and training simulators. He earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Electrical Engineering from the State University of New York at Stony Brook.