What is Threat Modeling and what are its most significant advantages?
It is the method of determining the needs of an organization’s cybersecurity as well as vulnerabilities, threats, and needs and suggesting solutions to meet these requirements and fix these weaknesses.
In his classic work on strategic military planning, The Art of War, Sun Tzu wrote that “if you know your enemy and are aware of it then you do not have to be concerned about the results of hundreds of combats.” As much knowledge you gather about your adversaries and the way they work, the more prepared you’ll be to defend yourself from their attacks.
This adage is more relevant than in the realm of cybersecurity. There are a variety of countermeasures for companies as well as reactive to safeguard themselves from or recover from attacks by cybercriminals.
Particularly the process of threat modeling is designed to help identify and comprehend the potential threats that an IT ecosystem is exposed to. In this article, we’ll discuss the definition of threat modeling as well as the different methods to carry out threat modeling and the advantages of modeling for businesses and industries that are of any size.
Like the name implies, threat modeling is the process of creating models of the many security vulnerabilities and attackers that could affect an organization’s security posture. Models of threat typically contain components that include:
A brief description of the different resources and assets in your environment of IT (endpoints and networks, software servers, databases, etc.)
A list of possible dangers to the system and the severity of their impact
A list of possible steps and strategies to address every danger
Suggestions to validate the accuracy of the model and ensuring that the patches and fixes work.
Any assumptions or conditions that the threat model needs
Threat models may take a variety of forms and can include different visuals and documents, based on the best method to convey information. Examples:
What is the type that Threat Modelling can be used for?
Because each institution is free to establish its own standards and standards, there are as many different types in threat analysis as organizations that can be modelled. There are however various model of threat that has gained a lot of traction in the area of cybersecurity, each provides a framework to help businesses understand the dangers they are facing. Here is a brief overview of the most popular models of threat models.
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The model was first developed by Microsoft in the 90s In the 1990s, the STRIDE threat modeling is being used to this day. The STRIDE acronym is a representation of some of the six most frequently encountered cybersecurity threats:
Spoofing: Gaining entry restricted networks or information through impersonation of an official person or resource
Tampering: Maliciously altering or modifying data (e.g. or encrypting files using ransomware or altering an administrator’s configuration file to gain administrator access)
Repudiation: Denial of responsibility for an attack, without proving of the contrary
Information disclosure: Data breaches of confidential or sensitive files
Denial of Service: The act of shutting down an online resource (e.g. or a website or service) by overloading it with unnecessary requests
The privilege of accessing information or documents in an unauthorised way, based on a user’s level of privilege in the system
PASTA (Process of Threat Simulation and Analysis) is a threat-modeling framework that was developed during 2015 by consultancy firm VerSprite. The PASTA framework describes the seven phases of creating a solid security threat model.
The definition of the goals covers both internal goals as well as any compliance or governance concerns.
The technical scope is defined The attack surface of an organization could comprise of endpoint systems such as networks, servers mobile devices, applications containers, databases websites, and much more.
Decomposing applications Data flow diagrams can help users see how their applications interact using data, preparing them for further analysis.
Analyzing threats: By utilizing different source of intelligence, and the assets identified in step 2of this process, companies must identify the most significant dangers to those assets.
Security vulnerabilities: Applications should be scrutinized for security vulnerabilities as well as design flaws and other weaknesses.
Examining attacks. Attack trees are how a malicious actor can successfully penetrate the IT ecosystem by exploiting the weaknesses discovered in the 5th step.
Assessing risks and their impact Then, companies must develop countermeasures to mitigate or eliminate the challenges and issues mentioned above.
The TRIKE open-source threat modeling method to aid in security audits and risk management. The TRIKE website has the users with a spreadsheet to establish the relationship between various individuals as well as assets that are part of and within an IT environment. Based upon these definitions, users are able to implement appropriate security measures or security checks to guard against any potential threats.
What are the benefits in Threat Modeling?
Threat modeling is among the most crucial strategies companies can employ to safeguard their systems from attacks by cybercriminals. The advantages and benefits of threat modeling are:
Improved collaboration The first priority is that threat modeling assists in getting every department within the company on the same level. By setting out your IT resources as well as the challenges they face threat modeling makes sure that everyone from your IT team to key stakeholders and executives with the same frameworks and assumptions.
Reduce the risk of attack: Threat modeling can help identify weaknesses and backdoors within your IT environment in order to be remedied quickly and efficiently. Additionally threat modeling assists in reducing IT complicatedness through the identification of unneeded endpoints, programs, or other resources that could be removed.
Prioritizing cybersecurity requirements Threat modeling can help organisations understand which risks require the greatest time and attention in terms of budget or effort. For instance, if there are multiple weaknesses that exist within any IT system, what one should be addressed first?
Making sure compliance is strengthened: Threat modeling can help companies meet the laws on security and privacy of data and regulations that require companies to know how they could be putting sensitive information at risk. For instance GDPR, which is the law of the European Union (General Data Protection Regulation) obliges organizations to carry out an Data Protection Impact Assessment (DPIA) prior to launching new projects that handle personal information.
From removing possible threat vectors to improving the level of compliance with regulations threat modeling can provide advantages. Any organization looking to improve its cybersecurity must engage in threat modeling frequently.