Defense in Depth And Website Security

The concept of Defense in Depth is not new. It’s been leveraged in the InfoSec domain for a long time, and has it’s roots deeply embedded in military strategy and tactics. That however doesn’t mean that even those in the InfoSec domain explain or implement it correctly. To fully appreciate the idea of Defense in Depth you have to subscribe to a very simple idea:

There is no single solution capable of providing 100% protection against any environment. 

I recently wrote an article on the Sucuri blog sharing some thoughts on how I feel we should think about the concept, and how we should go about deploying it within our technology stacks and organizations. I expanded my thoughts this past weekend at the BadCamp Hack The Planet summit in Berkeley where I shared some of the challenges we face in the website security domain pertaining to the subject.

The idea of Defense in Depth is simple: employ as many complementary defensive controls as makes sense for you and your organization. The optimal word being “complementary”. It’s based on the idea that every tool has a weakness, so find tools that help address them and that work in unison with one another. This does not mean you deploy every tool available, instead you must strategically map out the threats that you are most concerned with, that pose the biggest impact to your organization, and prioritize your defensive posture.

Today’s threats are evolving at a faster clip than any one solution or team can account for. It’s not a matter of finding the 100% solution, but about deploying the things we need to help reduce the growing risk. This has never been truer than in the website security domain. If employed correctly we should be better prepared to quickly identify issues, mitigate the threats and respond to incidents if so required. Attackers only need to win once. As defenders, we have to win every time. 


Leave a Comment