26 September 2023

ASD guidance to secure Essential Eight

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The Australian Signals Directorate (ASD) has launched updated guidance to help protect Essential Eight in its use of assessment across the public sector and industry.

Essential Eight is a series of mitigation strategies helping organisations make it harder for adversaries to compromise their systems.

Releasing the updated Essential Eight Assessment Guidance Package for the ASD, the Australian Cyber Security Centre (ACSC) said the guidance supported entities to gather and test system configurations and record maturity levels.

The Centre said the update included an Essential Eight Assessment Process Guide and an Essential Eight Assessment Report Template.

It said the Process Guide provided assessors with detailed assessment methods for each security control within the Essential Eight, along with multiple approaches for testing each control.

“The guide also provides detailed information for assessors to assess the use of compensating controls in the context of the intent of the Essential Eight Maturity Model,” ACSC said.

“[The] Template highlights the content requirements expected to be covered within an Essential Eight Assessment Report,” it said.

“It helps standardise and improve the consistency of assessment reports and the interpretation of results.”

ACSC said the resources would enable a high quality, consistent approach for entities to assess the effectiveness of their implementation of the Essential Eight security controls.

It said that by utilising the guidance, tools and templates, entities would be well positioned to target their security remediation activities based on the identification of control weaknesses and misconfigurations.

“This will lead to a stronger cyber security posture,” the Centre said.

The updated Essential Eight Assessment Guidance Package can be accessed at this PS News link.

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