FireBreak is not a Patch Management System.

The FireBreak Intrusion Suppression System provides protection before the patch -- Zero Day protection.

Patch and Pray

left drop quote

"It's the dirtiest little secret in the software industry: Patching no longer works. And there's nothing you can do about it. Except maybe patch less. Or possibly patch more. right drop quote

-Scott Berinato ("Patch and Pray" CSO Online, August 2003)


How do Patch Management Systems fight worms?

Patch management systems are among the hottest products in the security industry. These systems attempt to provide the ability to deliver critical patches in less time to complex and distributed systems. Patch management is critical to reducing exposure to worms, bots, malware, cracking, and the loss of data, identity, or dollars that results.

More effective patch management is a vital component in the anti-worm defense in depth toolkit.

How effective is Patch Management against the spread of worms?

Vulnerabilities that allow worms to spread continue to be discovered in dozens of critical and widespread systems including Windows, web servers, databases, and others. If patching were perfect, these holes still exist before you know about them, before your vendor knows about them -- but not always before a cracker knows.

Improved patch management can help reduce exposure, but it can't help one iota against "zero day" attacks. A Zero Day worm exploits a vulnerability which was either previously unknown to the vendor of the vulnerable system, or for which a patch hasn't yet been produced.

Recently worm construction toolkits have appeared on the internet which allow worms to be crafted so quickly they are sometimes released the same day as the vulnerability is announced -- exposing the internet to a Zero Day worm outbreak.