The Elephant in the Room: Why Security Programs Fail


Why are today's enterprises failing at security fundamentals?

As Praetorian security engineers perform red team exercises simulating an advanced persistent threat against our clients, we find that (much) more often than not, we are able to compromise their “crown jewels.” The uncomfortable truth of the current state is that many organizations will struggle and ultimately fail to keep a sophisticated attacker from breaching critical assets. This truth persists despite technical innovations, smart people, and billions of dollars invested.

In this whitepaper, we examine how and why many security programs spend too much time and money on things that do not appreciably reduce their organization’s risk. We also identify characteristics of effective security programs, and how you should re-frame your program to focus on the right priorities.

Included in this report:

  • Causes of Activity without Outcome
  • Misapplication of Frameworks
  • The Distraction of Compliance
  • Tenets of Effective Security Programs
  • Economics of Security Effectiveness

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