As a whole, asset management is not an information security function. However, there are definitely components to it that assist in strengthening the overall security posture. It is one of the most difficult verticals to cover. Without proper asset management, an environment cannot be protected to its full potential. It is impossible to protect assets that are unknown. In larger networks, it is next to impossible to completely be aware of each and every device that is connected or every piece of software the users may have installed. However, with the correct security controls in place, it becomes much easier.
The majority of this chapter will cover how best to find assets, tie all of the information together, and document it for ease of use and troubleshooting. Above all else, the two most important things to remember about asset management are to ensure there is one source of truth, and that it is a process, not a project.
Additionally, each asset or group of assets must be assigned an owner and/or a custodian. An asset owner serves as a point of contact for the assigned asset, whereas a custodian has responsibility for the stored information. The assets are then categorized into different levels of importance based on the value of the information contained in them and the cost to the company if an asset is compromised.
The need for information classification has risen as the amount of data on digital ...