On April 29th at 10 am PT, Appdetex will join noted security experts Dave Piscitello of InterIsle and Greg Aaron of Illumintel in a live webinar discussing "Brand Protection: A crucial layer in a multi-layered defense" live. Presented in conjunction with The Cybersecurity Tech Accord, the webinar focuses on how  brand protection organizations and security teams are collaborating in forward-thinking organizations to address digital risks

We sat down with Fred Felman of Appdetex to ask him some questions about the upcoming webinar and hear, in his own words, why the topic of “Multi-Layered” defense is so timely. 

Appdetex: What made you want to do this webinar?  

Fred: With changes in the availability of DNS (domain naming system) data, an expanded reliance on digital channels in all aspects of our lives and the deftness with which malicious actors use these same digital channels to "weaponize" brands, it's hard for consumers to stay safe and even harder for those who seek to protect them. So, the idea for this webinar was to have a dialogue on how companies are marshaling their resources to fight abuse, and speak about the challenges and changes in the DNS and how the current COVID crisis is further complicating action. 

Appdetex: The webinar focuses on how brand protection organizations are teaming up with security teams to mitigate brand based attacks - can you describe how this new approach to brand protection is benefitting brands?

Fred: If we define ‘benefits’ as mitigating risk and harm, that’s probably the gain for an organization that treats their brand protection as a security problem. Creating collaboration strategies, sharing information and data, defining metrics that measure success, and, tactically, using shared data to mitigate risk are all methods that are helping security and brand protection organizations take definitive action to reduce consumer harm and corporate losses. 

Some tangible examples of collaboration include: sharing of brand protection data and metadata with security teams for tactical blocking of malicious sites, users and email; coordinating the response to organized malicious actors' brand attacks; and, using security intelligence as a "seed" for brand investigations to uncover the full extent of a malicious organizations' operations. 

Appdetex: Can you describe in a sentence or two why multi-layered defense is such a vital part of brand protection these days?

Fred: "Multi-layered" defense is a strategy that security organizations have long relied upon. With the sophistication and success of weaponized brand attacks, brand protection organizations are realizing that they must defend themselves across all digital channels and marshal all forms of defense to protect their customers and company. 

Appdetex: Traditionally, Whois was an integral part of brand protection, but recent changes in privacy as a result of GDPR, the service is largely no longer available. What is the future of WhoIs? Do you think there is a future, or is this approach to brand protection the new normal?

Fred: It's safe to say that the triumph of privacy has come at the expense of consumer protection. And now, in usage, there is no legal basis for privacy protection - commercial use - good actors and bad actors alike can avail themselves of anonymity in the domain name system. At the same time, the wheels of ICANN's policy engine are moving slowly and are influenced by competing interests. So, that's a long way of saying, short of local legislation, this is the new normal. 

Appdetex: From your point of view as a brand protection expert, what should brands be on the lookout for in the future as far as emerging threats go? Do you see an increase in one area of potential attacks over others?  

Fred: Brands should be on the watch for organized actors. Bad actors who have economic motivation, are masters of digital marketing channels, and have the wherewithal to act in a coordinated way should be their biggest worry. We see complex and well-crafted attacks that exploit companies in ingenious ways like social and ad campaigns that drive traffic to branded sites and lead users to transact, download apps, or give-up personal identifiable data (PID). Often illicitly gathered PID is used in further attacks to extort monies or victimize friends or coworkers. These organized, malicious actors should be the focus of brand protection and security organizations.

Appdetex: What should forward-thinking brands be focusing on now to prepare for the future?

Fred: It's those coordinated attacks that require collaboration from brand protection and security organizations. Organized attacks that have economic motivation are able to do the most harm to companies, their reputation, and their revenue by exploiting brands' customers and employees. They should be the focal point of the joint work of this collaborative function we call brand security. Creating a strategy, foreseeing how to coordinate, collaborate, and share data will go a long way in mitigating the harm and risk associated with these attacks. 

While we touched on a few key questions here, there is much more to learn about the future of brand protection and the need for effective multi-layer collaboration. To learn more about the upcoming webinar or to register, click below.

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