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Extended Security Posture Management: What Is It and How It Can Optimize Your Security Stack

Every new employee, app integration, and software can become attack entry avenues for hackers.

Plus, constant employee churn, shifting platforms, and updating protocols can make it challenging to keep track of your rapidly expanding attack surfaces.

While cybersecurity tactics such as launching breach and attack simulations and red teaming can allow for security developments, the results are often disparate, leading to confusion.

The solution? Devise a cybersecurity plan that includes a system that combines all known defense techniques into a single holistic approach: Extended security posture management.

This guide can help you learn more about the nuts and bolts of extended security posture management and how it can strengthen your deployed security systems and stack.

Extended security posture management (XSPM): A quick overview

Extended Security Posture Management (XSPM) refers to a multilayered process that incorporates Breach and Attack Simulation (BAS), Attack Surface Management (ASM), Purple Teaming, and Continuous Automated Red Teaming (CART).

It leverages all these security tactics, combining them into one system, to continuously evaluate and score your company’s entire cyber resiliency.

XSPM can give you an up-to-date, comprehensive view of your active security posture, including detailed remediation process recommendations.

XSPM solutions generally run based on an extensive understanding of the MITRE ATT&CK®

Framework. When deployed into your company’s network, the XSPM platform can manage, challenge, and validate your whole security network.

The XSPM platform can launch a full range of multiple simulated tests simultaneously. Then, it compiles reports on potential threats and ranks them, guiding your security team in patching gaps and issues before they become bigger problems.

Essentially, XSPM provides a granular evaluation of your security network and stack, allowing you to understand your security on a deeper level.

How XSPM strengthens your deployed cybersecurity measures

XSPM deployed through reliable platforms can provide a range of automated functions to help keep your system safe, including the following.

Detect and prioritize vulnerabilities

XSPM software performs in-depth validation tactics to uncover vulnerabilities in your security system. It detects and promptly flags open ports, existing malware, data breaches, and compromised passwords.

The platform launches a massive quantity of simultaneous, simulated attacks against your system, allowing it to find many vulnerabilities quickly.

Then, the XSPM software organizes or sorts the detected vulnerabilities based on the level of threats they pose, allowing your security team to address the issues properly.

The more severe threats are usually shown at the top of the queue to ensure your security team prioritizes addressing them and patches the vulnerabilities promptly.

Conduct in depth and continuous validation

XSPM spans the whole attack kill chain. Its holistic system provides an effective way to cover all your security bases by employing BAS, attack simulations, ASM, and red teaming (among others).

Through XSPM, you can run these various validation processes against your system to increase your business’s security baseline and protection from all angles.

Also, XSPM platforms can incorporate the full range of tactics within the MITRE ATT&CK® Framework—the largest database of security breaches and hacking tactics online. It allows XSPM solutions to cover thousands of simulated attacks simultaneously for comprehensive, continuous security validation.

Implement risk scoring

XSPM software can actively score your existing cyber defenses by pulling data from various simulations.

This way, you’ll have a quantitative value that lets you effectively monitor your security improvements through the year. It eliminates the guesswork on whether your security controls are working or improving your protection.

The risk scoring can also help you justify your security spending. It allows you to identify the areas in your defenses that need improvement (and more budget) while determining which security measures work well and giving you the expected returns on your investment.

Additionally, the score can help you assess whether your team is effectively developing and implementing a more comprehensive security system for your business.

Automate purple teaming

Purple teaming is a security tactic and simulation exercise where blue and red teams work together to share attack and defense techniques.

Purple teaming helps ensure continuous feedback and knowledge transfer between blue and red teams to optimize cyber capabilities.

Deploying purple teaming not only helps you uncover system and security vulnerabilities but also lets your teams develop innovative solutions and patch problems as soon as they encounter the issues.

The catch is, manually performing purple teaming can lead to slower progress. It can make your vulnerability detection and security validation inefficient, time-consuming, and even resource-draining.

XSPM solutions are automating the process, incorporating automatic purple teaming as part of extended security posture management.

The platform moves through the MITRE ATT&CK® Framework to look for potential security gaps and creates, launches, and provides feedback about custom attacks.

The automation is significantly faster than other purple teaming forms, allowing for more efficient threat detection and security validation.

Integrate with other systems

One of the biggest, but often overlooked advantages of adopting XSPM solutions into your defenses is that they can integrate with a wide array of security strategies.

For instance, some security posture management programs can integrate with Endpoint Detection and Response (EDR) or Extended Detection and Response (XDR) and Security Information and Event Management (SIEM) solutions.

The integrations allow for correlating attack events and detection, including alerting security experts promptly and seamlessly.

XSPM integrations can improve your existing vulnerability management processes.

Plus, the reporting features through the integration can help ensure that the potential threats found via attack simulations are reported quickly. You’ll also get the recommendations for remediation promptly.

Fortify your cybersecurity with XSPM

Adopting XSPM solutions into your company’s defense systems is one of the most comprehensive methods to protect your business, data, and other assets from existing and emerging cyber threats.

XSPM can give you granular information on potential threats and vulnerabilities within your system accurately and seamlessly by launching automated and simulated attacks and covering the entire attack surface.

Deploying XSPM also allows for continuous reporting and prioritization, helping your security team fix the most pressing issues before they blow up and cause serious damage.

Find the best-fitting, innovative XSPM platform that answers your threat detection and security validation needs to strengthen your existing tools and controls while fortifying your defenses.