Attack Surface
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Why The External Attack Surface Matters: An Analysis into APAC related threat activities

Sourjesh Mukherjee
June 25, 2024

Imagine your business as a house. To keep it safe from burglars, you'd lock the doors and windows, right? In the digital world, it's the same concept. Here, your "doors and windows" are your external attack surface - all the ways hackers can potentially break into your systems and steal information.

This blog post dives into why the external attack surface matters, especially for businesses in the Asia-Pacific (APAC) region. We'll explore the challenges, how attackers exploit weaknesses, and what you can do to protect yourself.

Why Should You Care About Your External Attack Surface?

Here's the deal: in today's world, cyberattacks are on the rise. Hackers are constantly looking for ways to infiltrate businesses, and a large external attack surface makes them an easier target.

Think of it like having a house with ten unlocked windows. It's much more inviting to a burglar than a house with just one secure entrance.

By focusing on your external attack surface, you can significantly reduce the number of entry points for attackers. This makes it harder for them to gain access to your valuable data and systems.

Challenges in the APAC Region

The APAC region faces some unique challenges when it comes to cybersecurity. Here are a few reasons why:

  • Rapid Growth: The APAC region is experiencing rapid economic and technological growth. This means businesses are constantly adding new devices and applications to their networks, which can increase the attack surface.
  • Emerging Threats: Cybercriminals are constantly developing new ways to attack businesses. APAC may be particularly vulnerable to these new threats as security practices may still be evolving in some areas.
  • Varying Regulations: Regulations around data privacy and security can differ across APAC countries. This can make it difficult for businesses to implement a consistent security strategy.

How Attackers Exploit Your External Attack Surface

Here are some common ways attackers exploit weaknesses in an external attack surface:

  • Unpatched Systems: Outdated software often contains vulnerabilities that attackers can exploit.
  • Exposed Test Systems: Leaving test environments accessible from the internet creates a backdoor for attackers.
  • Leaked Credentials: Hackers can steal usernames and passwords and use them to gain access to your systems.
  • Open Ports: Unnecessary ports left open on firewalls create potential entry points.
  • Shadow IT: Unauthorized applications and devices used by employees can expose vulnerabilities.

Taking Action: Protecting Your Business

Here are some key steps you can take to protect your business from attacks that exploit your external attack surface:

  • External Attack Surface Management (EASM): Invest in EASM tools that can help you identify and manage all your internet-facing assets.
  • Patch Management: Regularly update your software and operating systems with the latest security patches.
  • Strong Passwords & Multi-Factor Authentication: Enforce strong password policies and implement multi-factor authentication (MFA) for added security.
  • Segment Your Network: Divide your network into smaller zones to limit the damage if attackers gain access.
  • Employee Training: Train your employees on cybersecurity best practices, such as how to spot phishing attacks.
  • Threat Intelligence: Stay informed about the latest cyber threats targeting your industry and region.


By understanding your external attack surface and taking steps to manage it, you can significantly improve your cybersecurity posture. This is especially important for businesses in the APAC region, which face unique challenges. Remember, a secure digital world starts with securing your digital doors and windows.

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