Category Archives: Events

VMconf 22: Why Didn’t It Work As Planned and What’s Next?

Hello everyone! In this episode, I want to talk about VMconf 22. It was an experiment from the beginning. Is it possible to host a Vulnerability Management event with little effort and budget? Looks like no. So I would like to talk about why the original idea failed and the future of VMconf.

The initial idea was to create a website, announce the launch of the CFP in social networks and everything else will happen automatically. People will apply and all that remains is to choose the best talks and manage the stream of the event. Well, no, not really.

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QSC21, VMDR Training and Exam

Hello everyone! On the one hand, because of the pandemic, we have become more distant from each other. We work mostly remotely from home. Traveling to a conference in another country has become much more difficult than it used to be. Now it is not only expensive. It has become much more difficult to obtain visas, there are restrictions related to vaccines, tests, quarantines, etc. And sometimes the borders are simply closed and it is impossible to get there.

On the other hand, we have become paradoxically closer to each other. Conferences have become much more online-oriented. And the main event of Qualys, QSC 21 Las Vegas, is now available to everyone with no delays or restrictions. This year, I not only watched the show, but also took VMDR training, passed the exam and received a certificate. I want to talk about this in this episode.

Conference

I will only state the main idea. Of course the way I understood it. Chris Krebs, former director of the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA), btw not related to a security blogger Brian Krebs, started the conference by talking about attacks. There will only be more of them, and it will be more difficult to mitigate these attacks. Of course, if companies could be protected with prohibitive measures, that would be fine. But the problem is that in order for a company to be competitive, it must build the “permissive environment”. Especially in our COVID times.

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VMconf 22 Vulnerability Management conference: Call For Papers started

Hello everyone! This episode will be about the VMconf 22 Vulnerability Management conference. CFP started on November 1, which will last a month and a half. So please submit your talk or share this video with someone who might be interested.

Let’s talk about the conference itself. All started with a post in my Telegram channel. I have looked at the listings of cybersecurity conferences and have not seen a global event dedicated entirely to Vulnerability Management.

Specialized conferences are mainly about SOC, DLP, AntiFraud, cryptography. Conferences with broad topics are aimed mainly at C-level executives or hardcore offensive specialists. Conferences are usually very regional. Of course, there are events organized by VM vendors, but their marketing goals are clear and there are usually no CFPs (Calls For Papers) at these events. In our COVID times, it has become much more difficult to attend offline events due to various restrictions.

So, it would be great to have our own independent international online Vulnerability Management event. From the community (in a very broad, global sense) and for the community. For interesting content and development of horizontal connections between people, not for marketing. And we will do it.

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Career Navigator talk for IT Hub College

Last week I gave a “Career Navigator” talk for the students of the IT Hub College in Moscow. By the way, this college has a very interesting practical information security program. If it is relevant for you, check it out.

I’ve never talked so much about myself in public. It was like giving advises to yourself from the past. An interesting experience. It took about an hour and a half. And now I will try to mention the main points.

University

I talked about studying at the university. The fact that we go to university to gain knowledge and skills. But this is not the only reason. The university diploma makes it easier to find a job and participate in emigration programs if you ever want to. For example, this is a requirement for a for the European Blue Card. Networking at the university is also important.

My experience of studying at Bauman Moscow State Technical University was definitely positive. Although I believe that there could be more practical courses on Operating Systems, networking and programming. On the other hand, there could be much less mathematics. I have the best memories from the Theoretical Foundations of Information Security course and the course based on CISSP exam.

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AM Live Vulnerability Management Conference Part 2: What was I talking about there

Hello all! It is the second part about AM Live Vulnerability Management conference. In the first part I made the timecodes for the 2 hours video in Russian. Here I have combined all my lines into one text.

What is Vulnerability Management?

Vulnerability Management process is the opposite of the admin’s saying “If it works – don’t touch it!”. The main idea of this process is to somehow fix the vulnerabilities. How do you achieve this is not so important. Maybe you will have a nice Plan-Do-Check-Act process and strict policies. Maybe not. The main thing is that you fix vulnerabilities! And the main problem is to negotiate this regular patching with system administrators and service owners.

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AM Live Vulnerability Management Conference Part 1: Full video in Russian + Timecodes in English

Hello all! 2 weeks ago I participated in the best online event fully dedicated to Vulnerability Management in Russia. It was super fun and exciting. Thanks to all the colleagues and especially to Lev Paley for the great moderation! I have talked out completely. Everything I wanted and the way I wanted. It seems that not a single hot topic was missed.

AM LIve: Vulnerability Management conference

You can see the two hours video below. It is in Russian. And it’s pretty complicated to translate it all. I won’t event try. ? If you don’t understand Russian you can try auto-generated and auto-translated subtitles on YouTube, but the quality is far from ideal.

To give you the idea what we were talking about I added the timecodes in English.

Timecodes

Section 1. Vulnerability Management Process and Solutions

  • 5:18 Vulnerability Management Process Definition
  • 10:53 Vulnerability Management is the opposite of the admin’s saying “If it works – don’t touch it!” The main thing in the process is to somehow fix the vulnerabilities. (Leonov)
  • 12:30 Sometimes a basic vulnerability scanner and Jira is already a Vulnerability Management solution (Leonov)
  • 13:30 Difference between Vulnerability Management Solutions and Vulnerability Scanners
  • 17:09 Vulnerability Management and Vulnerability Scanners: in our restaurant we call rusks “croutons”, because a rusk cannot cost $8, but crouton can” (Leonov)
  • 23:00 Licensing schemes, delivery options and costs
  • 28:48 Module-based licensing and the situations when modules can be excluded from the subscription (Paley)
  • 30:24 Commercial Vulnerability Management solutions are expensive, especially when licensed per host (Leonov)
  • 31:00 Maxpatrol unlimited licenses (Bengin)
  • 34:08 Perimeter scanning: very critical, low reliability of banner-based detections, it’s better to assess hosts accessible from the Internet with internal authenticated scans. Criticality of the network as an element of scoring. (Leonov)
  • 36:50 The impact of Regulators on the Vulnerability Management Market, a free ScanOVAL tool
  • 39:10 What to do with vulnerabilities in local software products that are not supported by foreign VM vendors?
  • 44:00 When it’s enough to use a free scanner? Could there be a full-functional and free vulnerability scanner? In theory, yes, but it is not clear how the vendor will finance the maintenance of the knowledge base. In practice, we see how such stories collapse. You need to understand the limitations of free products (such as OpenVAS). Including the completeness of the scan results and the ease of building the VM process. (Leonov)
  • 47:19 Poll: what is used in your organization?
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CISO Forum 2019: Vulnerability Management, Red Teaming and a career in Information Security abroad

Today, at the very end of 2019, I want to write about the event I attended in April. Sorry for the delay ?. This doesn’t mean that CISO Forum 2019 was not Interesting or I had nothing to share. Not at all! In fact, it was the most inspiring event of the year, and I wanted to make a truly monumental report about it. And I began to write it, but, as it usually happens, more urgent tasks and topics appeared, so the work eventually stopped until now.

The first discussion was about Offensive Security and Red Teams in particular

At CISO Forum 2019 I participated in two panel discussions. The first one was about Offensive Security and Red Teams in particular.

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