Top 13 Attack Surface Management (ASM) Tools Software in 2024

An Introduction to External Attack Surface Management Tools

As organizations expand their digital footprint into new realms of the internet, cloud, and beyond, the complexity and breadth of their attack surfaces grow exponentially. The expansion of internet-facing digital assets in inventories has given birth to a critical need for robust External Attack Surface Management (EASM) tools. Such External ASM tools are the cyber equivalent of high-powered telescopes scanning the vastness of space for potential threats in the modern digital age, where the perimeter of defense has extended far beyond the physical walls of an organization.

EASM platforms provide organizations with the ability to discover, analyze, and mitigate external threats before they can be exploited. We’ll explore how top EASM tools not only illuminate internet threat intelligence, external exposure and attack surface management but also provide actionable insights for organizations to seal their vulnerabilities. The goal is not just to understand the tools but to appreciate how they fit into the broader cyber security strategy, internet scanning capabilities, helping to weave a tighter security fabric that covers the sprawling expanse of modern digital enterprises.

What are Attack Surface Management Tools?

EASM is a proactive approach to security that continuously discovers, inventories, and analyzes all your external-facing assets. It’s like having a tireless security guard patrolling your digital borders, 24/7. EASM tools go beyond traditional vulnerability scanners, delving into the deep web, dark corners of the internet, and even social media to track down every exposed asset, from rogue servers to forgotten cloud instances. With a centralized visibility of all cyber assets and vulnerabilities assessment.

13 Best Attack Surface Management Tools in 2024

Cycognito

CyCognito is am Attack Surface Management Software platform that aims to eliminate the path of least resistance that attackers often exploit in organizational networks. CyCognito stands out as a leading player in the External Attack Surface Management (EASM) space. It boasts a unique approach to cyber threat detection and prioritization, making it a potential asset for organizations grappling with an ever-expanding digital footprint. But is it the right tool for your needs? Let’s delve into CyCognito’s strengths and weaknesses to help you decide.

Strengths:

  • Attacker-centric approach: CyCognito simulates real-world attacker tactics, uncovering hidden vulnerabilities that traditional scanners might miss. This proactive approach is invaluable for staying ahead of evolving threats.
  • Comprehensive discovery: CyCognito scours the internet, including the deep web and dark corners, leaving no stone unturned when it comes to finding your exposed assets. This ensures a truly complete picture of your attack surface.
  • Actionable insights: CyCognito doesn’t just overwhelm you with data. It prioritizes risks based on severity and exploitability, providing clear guidance on which vulnerabilities to tackle first. This prioritization is crucial for optimizing your limited security resources.
  • Continuous monitoring: CyCognito stays vigilant, constantly monitoring your attack surface for changes and new threats. This continuous evaluation keeps you updated on the ever-evolving threat landscape.
  • User-friendly interface: CyCognito’s platform is well-designed and intuitive, making it easy for security professionals of all levels to navigate and leverage its insights.

Weaknesses:

  • Pricing: CyCognito’s pricing can be on the higher end, making it potentially cost-prohibitive for smaller organizations or those with limited security budgets.
  • Limited integrations: While CyCognito offers some integrations, it would benefit from expanding its compatibility with other security tools for seamless workflow automation.
  • Focus on external assets: While CyCognito excels at external attack surface management, it doesn’t address internal vulnerabilities with the same depth. Organizations may need additional tools for comprehensive security coverage.

Who should consider CyCognito?

  • Organizations with complex external attack surfaces: CyCognito shines where the attack surface is vast and multifaceted, encompassing cloud assets, shadow IT, and scattered devices.
  • Security teams seeking actionable threat intelligence: The platform’s prioritization and attack simulation capabilities empower security professionals to efficiently focus on the most critical threats.
  • Organizations already invested in EASM: CyCognito can complement existing EASM solutions by filling in gaps and offering a unique attacker-centric perspective.

Who might want to look elsewhere?

  • Small businesses with limited security budgets: The pricing structure might not be the best fit for resource-constrained organizations.
  • Organizations primarily concerned with internal threats: CyCognito’s strength lies in external attack surface management, so it might not be the best choice for those solely focused on internal vulnerabilities.
  • Organizations needing extensive integrations: Limited integration options might be a hurdle for organizations heavily reliant on existing security toolchains.

ImmuiWeb Attack Surface Management Tool with ImmuniWeb® Discovery

ImmuniWeb’s Attack Surface Management tool is a robust solution designed to provide comprehensive discovery and monitoring of an organization’s external attack surface. Its strengths lie in its non-intrusive discovery process, comprehensive asset detection, dark web monitoring, and fixed pricing model, making it a potentially attractive option for a wide range of organizations.

Strengths:

  • Rapid discovery and mapping: ImmuniWeb boasts exceptional speed and accuracy in uncovering both known and unknown assets, even those hiding in the farthest corners of the internet. This comprehensive mapping ensures no vulnerable nook remains undiscovered.
  • Continuous monitoring and alerts: Unlike a fire alarm stuck on silent, ImmuniWeb constantly watches your attack surface, keeping you on edge with timely alerts about any changes or new threats. You’ll never be caught sleeping with a vulnerable asset exposed.
  • Vendor risk scoring: This unique feature is like a crystal ball, predicting the potential security risks posed by your third-party vendors. It empowers you to make informed decisions and build a resilient supply chain. ImmuniWeb’s vendor risk scoring dashboard
  • Actionable insights and prioritization: It’s not just about data overload; ImmuniWeb prioritizes vulnerabilities based on severity and exploitability, guiding you towards the most critical issues to tackle first. No more wasting time on trivial threats.
  • Dark Web monitoring: The dark web holds secrets, and ImmuniWeb unearths them. It constantly scans for stolen data, leaked credentials, and brand impersonation related to your assets, letting you quickly mitigate breaches before they escalate.

Weaknesses:

  • Pricing opacity: While ImmuniWeb touts its value, the pricing structure remains somewhat opaque. Smaller organizations might need to request a quote, potentially causing budget headaches.
  • Internal assets need additional tools: While ImmuniWeb excels in the external realm, internal vulnerabilities require separate solutions. Organizations seeking total security coverage will need a well-rounded security landscape.

Who should consider ImmuniWeb ASM?

  • Security-conscious organizations with complex, sprawling footprints: If your digital empire stretches across the globe, with servers scattered and assets galore, ImmuniWeb will be your cartographer, revealing blind spots and prioritizing vulnerabilities.
  • Third-party reliant businesses: ImmuniWeb’s vendor risk scoring is a game-changer for organizations heavily reliant on external partners. It empowers you to choose secure vendors and build a robust supply chain.
  • Organizations facing compliance pressures: Meeting regulations like GDPR and PCI DSS can be stressful. ImmuniWeb helps you stay compliant by proactively identifying and addressing vulnerabilities.

The verdict

ImmuniWeb’s ASM solution isn’t a one-size-fits-all solution. However, for organizations grappling with a complex external attack surface, ImmuniWeb’s rapid discovery, continuous monitoring, actionable insights, and unique features like vendor risk scoring and dark web monitoring offer a powerful advantage.

Detectify External Attack Surface Management Tool

EdgeScan Attack Surface Management for Visibility, Continuous Monitoring and Risk Prioritization

Halo Security Attack Surface Management Tool for better external security

NetSpi Attack Surface Management Tool for continuous pentesting

Why are ASM Tools Important in 2024?

ASM tools are instrumental in various aspects of managing and securing an organization’s external attack surface. Here’s how they address the specific areas you’ve mentioned:

  1. Identifying Visible Infrastructure Elements: ASM tools scan and map out all the assets that are part of an organization’s digital presence, including servers, domains, and network devices. This helps in creating a comprehensive inventory of all visible infrastructure elements, making it easier to manage and secure them.
  2. Identifying Shadow IT, Artifacts from Mergers, and Partner Activities: Organizations often have IT resources that are unknown or unmanaged, known as Shadow IT. This can also include remnants from past mergers or partner integrations. ASM tools help in discovering these hidden or forgotten assets, ensuring they are brought under security management.
  3. Identifying IoT Devices and Cloud Transformation: With the increasing adoption of IoT devices and cloud services, the attack surface has expanded significantly. ASM tools can identify and monitor these assets, providing insights into their security posture and ensuring they are included in the organization’s overall security strategy.
  4. Identifying Cybersquatting, Malware, and the Dark Web: ASM tools can monitor for instances of cybersquatting, where attackers register domains similar to the organization’s to conduct phishing or spread malware. They can also scan the dark web and other sources for signs of compromised data or discussions related to the organization, providing early warnings of potential threats.
  5. Identifying Vulnerabilities in Discovered Assets: Once assets are discovered, ASM tools assess them for vulnerabilities such as outdated software, misconfigurations, or weak encryption. This helps in understanding the security weaknesses that could be exploited by attackers.
  6. Assessing Vulnerabilities Against a Risk Scoring System: ASM tools often include or integrate with risk scoring systems that evaluate vulnerabilities based on their severity, exploitability, and impact on the organization. This helps in prioritizing remediation efforts, focusing on the vulnerabilities that pose the greatest risk.
  7. Assisting with Implementation of Security Hardening Mechanisms: With the insights provided by ASM tools, organizations can better implement security hardening mechanisms. For instance, they can use the information to segment their network more effectively, apply role-based access controls to limit exposure, and adopt a zero-trust security model to ensure continuous verification of all users and devices.
  8. Expanding Digital Footprints: As organizations grow and evolve, so does their digital presence. This includes everything from cloud services, web applications, connected devices, and more. Each new asset potentially opens up a new vulnerability. ASM tools help organizations keep track of these assets and their associated risks.
  9. Proactive Threat Identification: ASM tools allow organizations to proactively identify and address vulnerabilities before they can be exploited by attackers. By continuously scanning and analyzing the external attack surface, these tools can detect new risks arising from misconfigurations, unpatched software, open ports, and other security gaps.
  10. Visibility Across the Attack Surface: Organizations often lack a comprehensive view of their attack surface due to the complexity and dynamic nature of modern IT environments. ASM tools provide visibility into all external-facing assets, including those unknown or forgotten, ensuring that no part of the attack surface is overlooked.
  11. Efficient Resource Allocation: By prioritizing vulnerabilities based on their potential impact and exploitability, ASM tools help organizations allocate their security resources more efficiently. This means that the most critical vulnerabilities are addressed first, optimizing the use of limited security resources.
  12. Compliance and Regulatory Requirements: Many industries have strict regulatory requirements regarding data protection and cybersecurity. ASM tools can assist in maintaining compliance by ensuring that all external assets adhere to the necessary security standards and regulations.
  13. Enhanced Incident Response: In the event of a security incident, ASM tools can provide valuable context and intelligence, helping incident response teams quickly understand the scope of the breach and effectively contain and remediate the threat.
  14. Reducing Attack Vectors: By continuously monitoring and reducing the number of vulnerabilities and misconfigurations in the external attack surface, ASM tools minimize the avenues through which attackers can penetrate an organization’s defenses.
  15. Adapting to Evolving Threats: Cyber threats are constantly evolving, with attackers continually finding new ways to exploit vulnerabilities. ASM tools adapt to these changes by updating their threat intelligence and scanning capabilities, ensuring that organizations are protected against the latest threats.

Key Aspects of Selecting an External Attack Surface Management Vendor Tool

  • Security Information and Event Management (SIEM): Using advanced tools to collect and analyze security-related data.
  • Threat Intelligence: Keeping abreast of emerging threats and adapting defenses accordingly.
  • Regular Reporting: Keeping internal stakeholders informed about the state of the organization’s cyber defenses.
  • Integration with Incident Response: ASM should be closely integrated with an organization’s incident response plan. This ensures that when vulnerabilities are exploited, the response is swift and effective.
  • Stakeholder Education: Educating other stakeholders in the organization about the importance of ASM and their role in maintaining security is vital. This can help in fostering a culture of security awareness.
  • Compliance and Legal Considerations: It’s important to align ASM activities with legal and regulatory requirements, ensuring that compliance is maintained.
  • Use of Automation and AI: Leveraging automation and AI in ASM can help in managing large and complex attack surfaces more efficiently, especially in identifying and responding to threats in real-time.

And, what is Attack surface analysis and how does it work?

Attack surface analysis is a critical component of an organization’s cybersecurity strategy. By systematically evaluating an organization’s digital assets, identifying potential threats and vulnerabilities, and implementing appropriate mitigation measures, security teams can reduce the likelihood of successful cyber attacks and minimize the potential impact of breaches.

Attack surface analysis is a systematic process of identifying, evaluating, and understanding the various entry points, vulnerabilities, and weaknesses that an attacker could exploit to compromise an organization’s digital assets. The primary goal of attack surface analysis is to reduce the organization’s exposure to cyber threats and improve its overall security posture.

The Attack surface analysis process typically involves the following steps:

  1. Asset Identification: The first step in attack surface analysis is to identify all digital assets associated with the organization. This includes servers, databases, web applications, network devices, cloud infrastructure, mobile devices, IoT devices, and any other connected systems.
  2. Mapping: After identifying the assets, they are mapped to visualize the organization’s attack surface. This can help security teams understand the relationships and dependencies between assets, as well as identify potential weak points in the infrastructure.
  3. Threat Modeling: Security teams analyze the attack surface to identify potential threats and threat actors that could target the organization. This includes assessing the likelihood of various attack vectors, as well as the potential impact on the organization if an attack were to occur.
  4. Vulnerability Assessment: Next, security teams scan the identified assets for known vulnerabilities using vulnerability scanners and other security tools. This helps in uncovering weaknesses and security flaws that could be exploited by attackers.
  5. Risk Analysis: After identifying threats and vulnerabilities, security teams perform a risk analysis to prioritize assets and vulnerabilities based on their potential impact on the organization. This helps in determining which issues need immediate attention and allows for more effective allocation of resources.
  6. Mitigation Strategies: Based on the risk analysis, security teams develop and implement mitigation strategies to address the identified vulnerabilities and reduce the attack surface. This can involve patching vulnerable software, implementing security controls, hardening systems, and conducting employee training on security best practices.
  7. Continuous Monitoring: As the organization’s attack surface evolves over time, continuous monitoring is essential to maintain an up-to-date understanding of potential risks. Security teams should regularly review and update their analysis, ensuring that new assets are accounted for and emerging threats are addressed promptly.

Attack Surface Management Tools FAQs

These FAQs provide a basic understanding of ASM tools and their role in cybersecurity. They highlight the importance of these tools in modern digital security strategies

What are ASM Tools?

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