What is a zero-day attack and how can I protect my business?

Posted by Rudy Mitra on Apr 29, 2019 10:12:47 AM
Rudy Mitra
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What is a zero-day attack and how can I protect my business?

Zero-day vulnerability is a vulnerability that was left without a fix by the developer and was newly disclosed to the public or the outside world. Exploit on this new vulnerability is termed as a zero-day attack.

Hackers can exploit the weakness before the vulnerability is known to security or software companies or on the day that the announcement has been made, especially if the vulnerability is yet to be patched (or fixed). And being opportunistic, it’s in their best interests to keep the vulnerability unreported for as long as possible so that they can take full advantage.


Luckily there are lots of good guys on our side

Our security analysts practise responsible disclosure and report any zero-day vulnerabilities they discover. We currently have permission to publish a list of vulnerabilities which have been discovered by our cyber security team over time. Due to security risks associated not all zero-days are published and accredited.

Then there is the Zero Day Initiative, who “represent the world’s largest vendor-agnostic bug bounty program.” Their goal is to create a community of experts that report vulnerabilities and are rewarded financially for doing so. This allows the ‘good guys’ to take on the ‘bad guys’ or hackers.

Their upcoming and published advisories shows dozens of listings for the month of March alone, with Google, Microsoft, Apple and Adobe all featuring.


If I’ve got antivirus software in place, I’m safe, right?

Not necessarily. Some out-of-the-box antivirus scanners may pick up the zero-day attack due to their heuristics, but often, without the required signatures needed to see the attack, there is a high chance of exploitation occurring.

If you’re looking to truly protect your business, Next Generation Antivirus Security Solutions (NGAV) might be what you need. Malware is becoming increasingly sophisticated and it’s important for businesses to be fully covered when it comes to their endpoint protection.

Along with protection from zero-days, NGAV features: commodity malware prevention, algorithmic detection and blocking of malicious tools and TTPs, contextual evaluation of entire attacks, application whitelisting, machine learning, and virus scanning, signature detection & heuristic detection.

Using NGAV allows for time and money savings and can be a great teaching tool for staff. For example, David Lucas,Customer Solutions Manager, George Weston Foods says:


The new platform is continually kept up to date with categorisation and profiling of new threats and classification of existing traffic. Being able to focus on what is actually happening rather than reacting to close a new threat has saved a lot of time. Being able to see where our compliance was not 100%, we were able to act early and educate our people on the dangers and implications of not following our policies. This has helped us pro-actively understand patterns and educate our staff about the risks of the internet, before we have a serious incident.


So how do I protect my business?

Our engineers can analyse your environment to determine what level of protection your endpoints need and implement the correct next-gen security solution to safeguard your business. Contact us today to get started.


If you liked this article, you may also like:

Three Essential Actions for Every CIO of Digital Organizations

Quantum Computing: Is it a cybersecurity threat?

Learnings from One of the Biggest Data Scandals Ever


Rudy Mitra

Digital Marketing Coordinator


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