NIST SP 1800-31 describes an example solution that demonstrates how tools can be used to implement the patching capabilities described in NIST SP 800-40 Revision 4, Guide to Enterprise Patch Management Planning: Preventive Maintenance for Technology.
Despite widespread recognition that patching is effective, and attackers regularly exploit unpatched software, many organizations do not adequately patch. There are myriad reasons why, not the least of which are that it can be resource-intensive and that the act of patching can reduce system and service availability. Also, many organizations struggle to prioritize patches, test patches before deployment, and adhere to policies for how quickly patches are applied in different situations. To address these challenges, the NCCoE collaborated with cybersecurity technology providers to develop an example solution that addresses these challenges. This NIST Cybersecurity Practice Guide explains how tools can be used to implement the patching and inventory capabilities organizations need to handle both routine and emergency patching situations, as well as implement temporary mitigations, isolation methods, or other alternatives to patching. It also explains recommended security practices for patch management systems themselves.
Despite widespread recognition that patching is effective, and attackers regularly exploit unpatched software, many organizations do not adequately patch.
Organizations participating in this project submitted their capabilities in response to an open call in the Federal Register for all sources of relevant security capabilities from academia and industry (vendors and integrators). The following respondents with relevant capabilities or product components (identified as “Technology Partners/Collaborators” herein) signed a Cooperative Research and Development Agreement to collaborate with NIST in a consortium to build this example solution.
A Community of Interest (COI) is a group of professionals and advisors that share business insights, technical expertise, challenges, and perspectives to guide NCCoE projects. COIs often include experts, innovators, and everyday users of cybersecurity and privacy technologies. Members typically meet monthly by teleconference. Share your expertise and consider becoming a member of this project's COI.